Most people will soon be joking about how they intend to give up things like chocolate and sweets for Lent, in an attempt to improve their personal health and wellbeing. There are also many things that are inherently bad for the health of a company, big or small, and one of these unhealthy habits is relying on legacy technology.
Business Chief Europe spoke with seven industry experts to get their thoughts on how and why businesses should be giving up legacy technology this Lent.
Keep your infrastructure cutting-edge
“The practice of giving something up for Lent, and the sentiment of starting afresh at this time of year, serves as an important reminder for organisations to review their IT strategy and realise that traditional legacy tools are slowing their digital journey down,” states Johan Pellicaan, Managing Director EMEA at Scale Computing.
“The combination of technologies like hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) and edge computing are providing the ideal foundation for overcoming legacy technology limitations. HCI has gained rapid notoriety for its long list of undeniable benefits, such as its simplicity, high availability, and scalability.”
Sometimes it’s good to have your head in the clouds
“If your organisation still relies on legacy technology, the advent of Lent may inspire a rethink around your IT strategy,” Eltjo Hofstee, MD at Leaseweb UK, advises. “A good first step is to consider making a move to the cloud, which can be done in small steps.
“As every business is different, however, it’s important to consider the implications and costs for moving an organisation’s infrastructure to the cloud. Working with a partner who does it for a living can help to mitigate most problems and ensure a smooth transition from one infrastructure strategy to another with little – and ideally, no service interruptions.”
“Many organisations still heavily rely on on-premises, legacy IT infrastructure – often for reasons out of their control,” says Jon Lucas, Co-Director at Hyve Managed Hosting. “Some are restricted by budgets – a problem particularly evident across the public sector – while others use bespoke, mission-critical applications often seen as incompatible with the cloud.
“For many industries, including finance and government, making the move to private cloud is the ideal solution. It removes the legacy burden, allowing users to benefit from the latest product features and performance improvements.”
Graham Jackson, CEO at Fluent Commerce, discusses how retailers should look to refresh to stay ahead of the competition:
"Retailers should give up their monolithic legacy systems and e-commerce platforms: they were simply not designed to process real-time or near real-time inventory updates from multiple sources at scale. To compete in today’s ‘now economy’ retailers must adopt cloud native technology that’s driven by flexible business rules, that can scale flexibly to meet high volume demand.”
Refresh your defences
"The pace at which businesses operate today means supporting productivity has never been more important,” comments Mike Schuricht, VP Product Management at Bitglass. “One way of fostering productivity is through BYOD policies to offer employees a more flexible working regime.
“However, organisations should also be sure to embrace and address the security risks associated with having so many vulnerable endpoints connecting to the cloud and corporate network. The legacy approach IT teams should give up is focusing on the devices themselves. They should switch focus to the data. So rather than fixating on whether or not a device is ‘trusted’, IT teams should ensure that company data is safe, no matter where it goes."
Jan van Vliet, Vice President & General Manager EMEA at Digital Guardian, adds:
“The ubiquity of cyber threats like phishing and ransomware, means computer security should constantly be front of mind for all types of business. Regularly reviewing system settings and disabling unnecessary, outdated, or legacy services that may leave them open to attack, is a must. It is also absolutely essential that IT systems are constantly updated and free from known vulnerabilities."
Remain engaged with your engagement channels
Richard Buxton, Head of Collaboration at Node4, advises:
“Collaboration is at the heart of many businesses, so relying on legacy technology for this element of operations could really be the difference between smooth sailing and a sinking ship. Legacy telephony makes it both difficult and costly to integrate collaboration platforms with other systems.
“But, collaboration solutions are continually advancing and evolving and almost all of the latest collaboration system technology and business-specific Software-as-a-Service platforms now include APIs or bots to make integration easier and richer.”
“The contact centre industry in particular can find itself stuck relying on legacy infrastructure, because organisations have traditionally seen their contact centres as a place to make savings,” comments Martin Taylor, Deputy CEO at Content Guru. “However, with customer experience becoming increasingly important - in many industries it is now the key business differentiator - making changes to the contact centre can add significant value for an organisation.
“So, for lent this year, instead of waiting for an expensive equipment failure to trigger the replacement of legacy infrastructure, why not look proactively at switching to a cutting-edge cloud service to improve your customer engagement and stay ahead of the pack. Tempting, isn’t it?”