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Companies that have been able to shift to the cloud and away from Legacy and on-premise systems have found huge benefits in the ease of access as well as to the ability to quickly and effectively update systems when needed. The monthly subscription costs many of these services are now based off of, are much easier to budget for then worrying about the cost of hardware maintenance and software upgrades as well as the unknown cost of system down scenarios as well as broken ‘plug in’ component pieces. The companies that adopted cloud computing platforms were much more nimble and able to quickly convert to work from home scenarios in the early part of this year when lockdowns were rolled out for Covid-19.
What 2020 has really brought into the harsh light of reality though is how costly in-house ‘Legacy IT’ is becoming for the companies that still have it. Many companies built custom systems that were customized to meet specific business needs. This legacy IT often plugs into other non-legacy pieces such as certain browsers, operating systems or old software platforms. These legacy systems may work great for years and years – but as more software providers move to cloud-based systems – there is a lot of backend work required to keep the legacy systems functioning. Another problem could be that the legacy system runs on now or soon to be unsupported internet browsers or Operating Systems. Take for example the retirement of Internet Explorer. Many legacy systems were built off of the IE interface – those systems will no longer be supported by Q3 2021. This causes a huge burden to companies that have legacy systems built using IE.
Companies using Legacy IT systems now must weigh the cost (financial as well as security) in continuing to use old and unsupported systems – or – look at the cost to upgrade or migrate to cloud systems to support their business functionality.
“But for many companies, their previous investments are now about to become expensive headaches. For them, legacy IT is a big drain on resources. About three-quarters of the estimated $35 trillion spent on tech since 2010 has gone toward operating and maintaining existing systems. At least $2.5 trillion has been spent on trying to replace legacy IT systems, of which some $720 billion was wasted on failed replacement efforts.”
The moving away from Legacy IT will be a challenge that many businesses will face over the next few years. Companies will need to look at new ways to conduct business with new technology to gain the needed results. Working with a trusted IT advisor will help them navigate the changing landscape ahead of them. Creating test environments before launching new technology into production environments will be key to ensuring a smooth transition from Legacy to new platforms.
“Cloud-based transformation offers companies the most powerful way to reinvent their businesses, unleash the expertise and creativity of their people, enhance their sustainability efforts and create new stakeholder value,” said Karthik Narain, global lead, Accenture Cloud First.