There’s an old adage that I’m sure most of you are familiar with: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Unfortunately, that’s become something of a rallying cry for enterprises with extensive legacy infrastructure. These ancient systems are loaded with custom applications, and though they aren’t necessarily “broken” in the customary sense, they don’t necessarily work all that well in a modern context, either.
“Sooner or later, most organizations face a problem with legacy systems,” writes Information Technology expert Michael Issaev. “Even if a legacy system was architected properly years ago, it is very stable and it does its job, the language it was developed in might no longer be commonly used, and you might experience problems finding talent to support the system. If your legacy system services external clients, you might face a problem with having to replicate the system for each new client. At some point, the number of instances will become unmanageable, and so you would want to implement a new multi-tenant solution.”
In other words, no matter how well a legacy system works, it’s eventually going to reach the end of its lifespan. But therein lies the problem. If your business is anything like most, then how it operates is inextricably tied up in the systems, processes, and applications your employees use – eliminating legacy systems altogether will disrupt employee workflows and generally cause all progress to come grinding to a halt.
The key, then, is a gradual spin-down – and here’s where SaaS tools come into play.
In a recent VMworld Interview, Cobalt Iron COO Mark Ward and ATS Group/Galileo Performance Explorer owner Tim Conley discussed how SaaS can help businesses bridge the legacy gap for their employees. Cloud-based applications can help enterprises gradually bring business processes and workflows into the cloud. This, in turn, allows those businesses to both extend the lifespan of existing legacy architecture, and gradually phase it out in favor of less complex, more easily-consumable virtual solutions.
This isn’t an entirely new concept, mind you – as early as 2012, Gartner noted that legacy apps were being replaced (and extended) by SaaS solutions. But with recent advances in cloud technology and the growing prominence of open-source development, SaaS applications are now more popular than ever. In another report, Gartner noted that even the poorest SaaS segment shows significant growth – meaning that if you’re looking to update your archaic systems, there’s never been a better time.
And there are few better hosts to help you do so than Future Hosting. Click here to see the wide range of SaaS hosting options we offer – from development frameworks to VOIP solutions to collaboration apps. Whether you’re looking to develop custom tools or simply implement a new, purpose-built application, we’re the right choice.
Legacy systems might not be entirely broken – but they aren’t in perfect condition, either. The costs, security risks, and man-hours associated with keeping these archaic systems and applications running far outstrip the benefits. It’s high time businesses realized that.