Today, most companies are realizing the many benefits of the digital transition, from cost savings and increased productivity to better security. However, for many businesses, a major obstacle in the way of achieving true digital game change is the decades-old technological systems that are still used to drive their operations.
Legacy technology systems need to be replaced with better, leading-edge solutions if businesses are to realize the full benefits of digital transformation. But the process can be difficult for a number of reasons – employees may resist changes to their processes, leadership may question the costs that come with it, and work may avoid interruptions. So how can technology leaders overcome the common challenges of modernizing their traditional technology? Below, 16 members of the Forbes Technical Council share their advice.
1. Measure Direct Cost Savings
The biggest challenge is often justifying the costs. Start by calculating the direct cost savings that result from making better use of resources. Keep in mind that new technology provides better data, which gives your business a competitive advantage and helps them make better, faster decisions. It should also be noted that the cost of making decisions based on outdated or incorrect data can be very high. –Jim Wodcomb, RazConnect
2. Explain opportunities to stakeholders
One of the biggest hurdles is buying from the top management levels. Short-term costs are difficult to swallow, but managers and partners need to understand the opportunities that open up in technological modernization – not only in new business opportunities and growth but also in bringing new skills with expectations. Work with new technologies. – Alicia Ladecker, The Mill
3. Explain ‘why’ to the team
A major challenge when modernizing traditional technology is dealing with internal resistance to change. Proceed by informing employees of the need to modernize the system, and the “why” and “what’s inside me?” Create a feedback loop where team members can submit questions and comments before and after technology upgrades. – Andrea Davey, Scout Talent Team
4. Work with Employees to Relieve Pain
The modernization of traditional technology can have a negative cultural impact on an organization. Digital transformation often involves a major change in the day-to-day functioning of employees. System operators may be forced to take this step and protest the change. One solution is to develop a plan in which leaders work with employees to identify pain points and establish a process to reduce them. – Nicholas Domnish, EE Solutions
5. Start Small
In my opinion, the bipolar approach is the best. Start with a small source for feedback and clarity on which items should be digitized or modified. A small team (composed of members of your current team) should do new implementations and test the source of the feedback. When that happens, start moving to the most modern technology one at a time. –Giancarlo De Ves, Unosquare, LLC
6. Focus on Driving Value
Modernizing traditional technology can be dangerous, and businesses should not be discouraged even before the process begins. Don’t try to do everything at once to deal with it further. Take a careful approach – find out what brings value to the business, as well as ensure that the business is resilient and proactive amidst changing market conditions. Focus on those areas first. – Kim Huffman, Elastic
7. Protect Legacy Data
Moving on from outdated technology can be a challenge, but it is critical if companies are able to effectively manage back office and product development processes. Preserving and maintaining legacy data is critical in this migration. There is concern that the technology will continue to evolve to create an architecture with capabilities and expansion in the future to improve the cycle between key technologies. – Alex Cresswell, Thales Group
8. Avoid Used Pranks
When innovating legacy technology, many businesses have decided to use pilot programs or slide deployments as a way to reduce risk. In fact, today’s modern technologies are moving too fast to waste time on limited releases, and useless functions don’t inherently apply to innovation. The only way to be successful is to act decisively and lead your entire organization in the direction of change. – Adrian Nussenbaum, Miracle
9. Make sure all business components are supported
Companies committed to digital transformation should avoid adding new technologies to existing stocks. That approach has caused businesses to build excessively digital infrastructure in some areas, leaving other operations out and creating technological disparity. Instead, businesses need to support all elements of the business and lay the foundations of the entire system. —Jens Camperal, Availability
10. Create an Intermediate Software Layer
Legacy technology is often an important part of an organization, making it difficult to make pleasant changes. My advice is to write an intermediate software that emulates legacy system functions for all clients and initially acts as a pass-through to legacy mode. Send your new computer to both customer calls and legacy settings and test it out before it takes too long. –Gary Wiseman, Nautilus, Inc.
11. Overlapping Task Sets
The legacy technology has been around for more than two decades. Legacy systems are often very out of date – so data must be transferred from the original platform before digital transformation can occur. The functional approach – providing full business coverage with fully available interconnected functionality, data duplication and ad hoc systems – can ensure that traditional technology can meet the challenges of integration. come on over. – Niranjan Limbachiyaa, Kiwi QA Services