Since technology advances year by year, almost every organisation will find itself dealing with legacy technology over time—and face the challenges that brings. Most businesses understand that their technology will ideally need to be modernised on an ongoing or regular basis.
Today, many organisations are transforming from a reliance on on-premise systems in private data centres—towards the efficiency, agility and scalability of cloud-based systems.
However, many organisations continue to maintain and operate their legacy technology beyond its natural lifespan—sometimes for decades.
This resistance to replacing legacy technology is typically a result of three main reasons.
Firstly, the cost of Investing in new technology. While maintaining a legacy system is costly, companies worry that moving to a new system will demand a large up-front investment of money, time and effort.
Secondly, they fear the change—particularly in terms of what might happen if something goes wrong, or they cause a security breach. Moving a business function or a whole organisation to a new platform may be resisted by those who believe “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.
And thirdly, they worry about the difficulty of modernising. Migrating may require a deep technical understanding of the legacy technology system— but the people who knew the details may be long gone. They also worry about the sheer difficulty and complexity of defining a replacement system that will do everything the legacy system does.
For these reasons, your digital strategy for technology modernisation must address these worries. Your proposals must convince business leaders and stakeholders that the benefits of modernisation far outweigh those of maintaining the legacy status quo.
You must also prove that the transformation can be achieved with the minimum of disruption to critical business operations.
When legacy technology cannot yet be replaced, an option for modernisation is to use advanced middleware to communicate and integrate between old and new systems.