If you are still using outdated software for your business, you are missing out on a lot of benefits that modern platforms and technologies can offer.
Benefits of Replatforming From a Legacy System
Replatforming is a process of migrating your legacy system to a new platform without changing its core architecture. It allows you to take advantage of the cloud environment and improve your performance, security, integration, and user experience.
In this blog post, I will share with you some of the reasons why you should replatform your old business software as soon as possible. Here are the top five benefits of replatforming.
1. Flexible Customization
Old software platforms are often rigid and inflexible, limiting your ability to customize them according to your business needs and preferences. They also make it hard to add new features and functionalities that can enhance your value proposition and customer satisfaction.
Replatforming allows you to move to a more flexible and adaptable platform that can support your unique requirements and goals. You can tailor your software to fit your brand identity, workflow, and customer journey. You can also leverage cloud-native features such as auto-scalability, serverless computing, and microservices architecture⁵.
2. Elastic Scalability
One of the biggest challenges of old software platforms is their inability to handle sudden spikes or drops in demand. They often suffer from performance issues, downtime, or data loss when faced with high traffic or load. This can result in lost revenue, damaged reputation, and frustrated customers.
Replatforming enables you to scale your software up or down as needed without compromising its quality or reliability. You can use the cloud’s elastic resources and pay-as-you-go model to optimize your costs and efficiency. You can also ensure that your software can handle any amount of workload or users without breaking a sweat.
3. Seamless Integration
Old software platforms are often isolated and incompatible with other systems and applications. They make it difficult to share data and information across different departments, teams, or partners. They also create silos and bottlenecks that hinder collaboration and innovation.
Replatforming allows you to integrate your software with other systems and applications easily and securely. You can use the cloud’s APIs, SDKs, and connectors to connect your software with various data sources, tools, and services. You can also enable data synchronization, automation, and orchestration across different platforms and devices.
4. Enhanced Security
Old software platforms are often vulnerable to cyberattacks and security breaches. They lack the latest security updates, patches, and fixes that can protect them from hackers and malicious actors. They also expose your sensitive data and information to risks of theft, loss, or corruption.
Replatforming allows you to improve your software’s security and compliance with the cloud’s advanced security measures and best practices. You can use the cloud’s encryption, authentication, authorization, firewall, backup, and recovery features to safeguard your software from threats and disasters. You can also comply with various regulations and standards such as GDPR, HIPAA, PCI DSS, etc.
5. Better User Experience
Old software platforms are often slow, clunky, and outdated. They provide a poor user experience that can frustrate your customers and employees. They also fail to meet the expectations and demands of today’s digital-savvy users who want fast, easy, and convenient solutions.
Replatforming allows you to deliver a better user experience that can delight your customers and employees. You can use the cloud’s speed, availability, and accessibility features to provide faster, smoother, and more consistent service across multiple touchpoints.
What are Legacy Systems?
- Operating systems that are no longer supportedtheir developers, such as Android 1 to 6 (Marshmallow), Windows XP, and Windows 7. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software that is outdated and inefficient, such as Tradecard, Baan ERP, and SAP R/2.
- Programming languages that are obsolete and difficult to maintain, such as OptimJ, FoxPro, PL/B, and COBOL. Health software that has been discontinued or replacednewer solutions, such as Google Health, MyWay, and Allscripts.
- Systems to handle customers’ accounts in banks, such as the one usedthe Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) that caused a major outage in 2012. Computer reservations systems for airlines, such as the one usedDelta Air Lines that caused a global system failure in 2016.
- Air traffic control systems that rely on outdated hardware and software, such as the one usedthe Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the USA. Energy distribution systems (power grids) that are vulnerable to cyberattacks and blackouts, such as the one usedUkraine in 2015.
- Nuclear power plants that use legacy software and hardware to control their reactors, such as the one usedIran in 2010. Military defense installations that use old technology to operate their weapons and communications, such as the one usedthe US Department of Defense (DoD) that still uses floppy disks.
How to Identify a Legacy System
To identify if your system is a legacy one, you can use some criteria that are commonly used to assess the obsolescence of a system. Some of these criteria are:
- The age of the system: How long has the system been in use? Is it based on outdated technology or software that is no longer supported or updatedthe developer or vendor?
- The compatibility of the system: How well does the system integrate with other systems and applications that are currently usedthe organization? Is it isolated, siloed, or incompatible with modern standards and protocols?
- The scalability of the system: How well does the system handle changes in demand, workload, or users? Can it adapt to the growth and evolution of the organization and its needs? Does it have limitations in terms of performance, reliability, or functionality?
- The availability of the system: How easy is it to access, maintain, and troubleshoot the system? Is it prone to errors, downtime, or security breaches? Does it have adequate backup and recovery mechanisms? Is there enough qualified staff who know how to operate and manage the system?
If your system meets one or more of these criteria, then it is likely a legacy system that may need to be replaced or migrated to a new platform.
However, before making any decision, you should also consider the benefits and risks of keeping or changing your system, as well as the costs and challenges involved in the process. You should also consult with experts and stakeholders who can help you evaluate your options and plan your transition.
Benefits of Keeping Legacy Systems
Keeping a legacy system can have some benefits, depending on the context and needs of the organization. Some of the possible benefits are:
- Stability: A legacy system may work satisfactorily and reliably, without requiring frequent changes or updates. It may also provide a consistent and familiar user experience for the employees and customers.
- Cost-effectiveness: A legacy system may be cheaper to maintain than to replace or modernize, especially if it is large, complex, or customized. It may also avoid the risks and challenges of migrating to a new platform, such as data loss, compatibility issues, or security breaches.
- Efficiency: A legacy system may be convenient and sufficient for the organization’s purposes, without needing additional features or functionalities. It may also leverage the existing skills and knowledge of the staff, who are trained and experienced in using the system.
Replatforming offers a smart way to modernize your old business software while minimizing the time and financial investment required to alter its core architecture. Embracing replatforming empowers you to harness the advantages of the cloud environment, enabling your business to maintain a competitive edge.
However, it’s essential to recognize that retaining a legacy system has its merits, but it also carries certain drawbacks. The choice between preserving or overhauling a legacy system should be made after a thorough assessment of the organization’s objectives, requirements, and available resources.
Thank you for reading this blog post. I hope you found it useful and informative. If you have any questions or feedback about replatforming or my services, please feel free to contact me anytime. I would love to hear from you.