Leaving a Legacy – Making Tech Upgrades Work for Your Organisation

Within many businesses, the prospect of changing technologies that are embedded within established processes can be intimidating.

The classic ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ approach often means outdated hardware and software solutions are retained, with decisions about new investments kicked down the road until something breaks.

In the meantime, security may be at risk, or competitors could leap ahead, having left legacy systems behind as part of a modernisation strategy. As a result, what feels simple and convenient in the short term can turn out to be costly and damaging later on.

Consider the ubiquitous dangers presented by ransomware, for instance. In the UK last year, ransomware attacks grew by more than 200%. In response, many organisations are quite rightly investing more in their cybersecurity and data protection measures to make sure their company can mitigate and recover from attacks.

The question is, how? Should organisations aim to build on what is already in place, or is it better to address issues such as this by starting from scratch to build future-proof environments? Across the full spectrum of technology investment decision-making, implementing new solutions generally requires investment, training and, quite often, some level of business disruption and even downtime. The advantages of renewal, however, can give businesses a real competitive edge while also delivering significant operational and cost benefits.

In contrast, the inertia created by the fear of change can mean organisations are controlled by their technical limitations instead of benefitting from the freedom and agility that comes with modern digital innovation.

But in many situations, adopting new technology doesn’t need to be prohibitively difficult, and just as important, it doesn’t have to include making unnecessary changes. For instance, all businesses will occasionally add or remove vendors from their solution portfolio, but what matters is that current technologies continue to be cutting-edge in their own right and remain compatible with both present and future business needs.

The role of vendors

While the role of vendors is central to the process of technology renewal, they can also contribute to the difficulties many businesses experience when in reality, they should hold the key to finding an effective solution. For example, by working closely with customers during the transition and identifying current issues and final outcomes that the customers need, vendors can lessen the pain that their customers experience while switching from outdated systems to newer ones.

One of the key factors to take into account when selecting a new vendor to work with is experience and capability breadth and depth: a vendor with the capabilities to span all workloads will rarely come across a scenario that it hasn’t seen and solved before, especially if it has the portfolio to cover all challenges. Today, there are a variety of vendors who can assist with an even wider range of solutions.

Moreover, good vendors will also be aware that no two clients are the same and that it’s crucial to customise each transition plan to the specific client. These plans should include design, control, implementation, and post-implementation support to give the client confidence in the outcome.

In order to make it simple and easy to integrate with existing or new internal tools, such as security or automation, the aim is to consolidate the technology currently in use. Since most businesses will have more than one solution, this goal is to bring it all into a secure, regulated, and controlled platform. The customer may reduce the risk associated with projects, deadlines, costs, and outcomes by using the tried and true market leaders. Additionally, it will contribute to a decrease in time to value, which will please the boardroom.

Vendors’ ultimate objective is to minimise the discomfort associated with change. Change inevitably causes some disruption, but one of the key ways that organisations can lessen the pain of modernising their systems and progress toward a smarter, more digital future is by collaborating with reputable vendors who have innovative and diverse portfolios.

In doing so, it becomes much easier to address and mitigate the potentially negative impact of legacy technology and keep infrastructure modernisation firmly on the agenda. In doing so, businesses can put themselves in an ideal position to benefit from high performance, secure solutions, and services.

About the Author

Steve Young is UKI Sales Engineering Director at Commvault. Commvault’s data protection and information management solutions provide mid- and enterprise-level organizations worldwide with a significantly better way to get value from their data Commvault can help companies protect, access and use all of their data, anywhere and anytime, turning data into a powerful strategic asset.

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