Application modernization is the refactoring, re-purposing or consolidation of legacy software programming to align it more closely with current business needs. It involves everything from mobile technologies to process improvements and finding the right combination of assets to ensure technology matches business agility.
Apart from reducing operational costs, a truly successful app modernization project aligns the IT goals with the business goals so that it can create future value through new market generation, improved customer retention and more. Once this is understood, the process of selecting which technologies and tactics are right for a specific business can begin.
There are many challenges that organizations face before opting for app modernization tactic, and before they randomly get tempted they should rather consider them cautiously:
Just by deciding to go for app modernization doesn’t ensure a smooth Digital Transformation journey. Most organizations are dealing with a complex landscape with multiple technologies and platforms, unsupported environments and legacy applications. These kinds of systems lead to overlapping of business processes, dependencies across applications etc. due to all these reasons organizations get perplexed about the decisions like where and how to start.
As businesses grow, an application portfolio to grows over a period of time. This brings a typical sort of underlying process pitfall. That is duplication which means different users or departments using different applications for the same business process. This further causes increased maintenance for IT staff. This even gets worse with communication gaps.
When organizations have multi-dimensional data, it is very likely that they have mature processes and strict governance in place and they are in a position to maintain metrics related to application cost. But other organizations hardly can clear the three metrics test that collectively helps in measuring the value of an application i.e. license and support contract costs; service, maintenance and enhancement costs; and total application lifecycle cost.
In many organizations, users have complaints that they keep on asking for better IT experience while the IT team often ask them to wait or sometimes even they just outright dismiss the demands of the users due to their own reluctance. This is itself an indication that the existing apps are not providing any value at the time it is quintessential.
Organizations these days are switching to new process and procedure, however, many organizations still struggling with worn out procedures and applications. This not only hampers an organization’s
ability to quickly innovate and deliver but also this adds to the overall operational efficiency. Lack of collaboration among development teams.
Despite of all these challenges, it is still worthwhile to opt for app modernization as a necessity rather than a choice. The roadmap towards it starts from assessing what is the current status and what is the envisioned status of an organization. This step travels through the paths which are available to get to the desired status. Only after these steps are taken should a digital journey of an organization begins:
Current state: Assessment of conceptual and logical models of current business and IT landscapes
Vision: Outline of business and IT context and future direction, development of engagement plan
Desired future state: Forecasting conceptual and logical models of desired future state for business and IT
Road map: Formulating gap analysis and IT strategies
Approach: Assessment of the four key modernization approaches (i.e., re-host, convert, re-write, replace)
It is vital for organizations to opt for Digital Transformation, it’s even more crucial for them to understand the importance of planning and assessment before they actually do that. After deciding a roadmap, it is also very important to find a strong project team that can work as a partner and help reduce the risk through strong project delivery governance, project management best practices, strong architecture and design guidelines and frameworks, technology accelerators, attention to detail and quality and a strong team to build, test and deploy the systems. Taking into consideration the existing digital ecosystem, where business and technology landscape collides and changes frequently resulting in the unforeseeable changes, only an experienced project team can manage these risks and deliver successfully.