Legacy System
Modernization

 

Home » Services » Legacy Systems Maintenance & Modernization

Legacy Systems Modernization and Maintenance from InterSoft Associates

What Got You Here Might Not Get You There.

Legacy software is any software that is still in use because it satisfies a particular business need, even though there are more technologically advanced standards in place. 

As technology continues to evolve, business practices must take advantage of the shift. When a business is thriving and expanding or hopes to gain that competitive advantage over others, it is essential to bridge the gap between the growth of your organization and any outdated technology system.

We've done it so you don't have to.

We’ve been serving Long Island, New York City and the Tri-State area for more than 30 years. Long enough to be developing today’s legacy systems back when they were cutting edge. This gives us a unique understanding of these older, legacy systems.

 

Whether you are maintaining a legacy software system or need assistance in porting them to a new environment to address evolving business needs, our expert methodology to analyze and reverse-engineer legacy platforms to more advanced and robust systems can help you operate more effectively, enhance productivity, streamline workflow processes, and maximize revenue.

Legacy System Modernization

Just as the name implies, Legacy Software is software or a software system that has been around for many years, making it an outdated hardware and software combination unable to keep up with modern technological advancements. That’s where modernization comes into play.

Those still employing Legacy Systems may find themselves vulnerable to cyber attacks, malware and hacks alongside the inability to accommodate a variety of newer applications and services. Legacy System Modernization is something that should be implemented to combat the software’s age and incapabilities so that it can withstand the changing times and keep businesses running smoothly.

Legacy System Modernization 

However, there’s more to Legacy System Modernization than meets the eye.  For example, what exactly does the term modernization mean, how do you go about implementing Legacy Software Modernization, and how will you benefit?

 

What Does Legacy System Modernization Mean?

Ultimately, Legacy System Modernization means upgrading a dated, or Legacy system to current technological advancements, making it equipped to handle data during modern times so that it works better, faster, and more efficiently while also bolstering security.

A Legacy System that operates with a dated Windows, Java, or Internet Explorer program won’t receive necessary updates, especially concerning security. Because these systems operate on dated information, they may operate slowly, cannot access new programs, and open themselves to potential cybercrime risks.

For example, in the recent year, because of COVID-19’s impact on job loss, many states’ unemployment systems crashed due to the influx of participants accessing them and the Legacy Software they relied on.

As a result, millions of unemployed individuals were unable to sign-up for unemployment. If the states had modernized their Legacy Systems, in this context, the platforms would have likely easily handled the massive participant influx. This resulted in an extremely poor customer experience for people who really counted on it.

What Does Legacy System Modernization Mean?   

Any modernization approach should include a full evaluation of any existing Legacy Systems that are still in use and what needs to change to make it up to modern technology standards. Additionally, modernization should include an audit of how older applications may no longer meet the needs of the organization.

 

How Do you Know when you Need to Upgrade?

There are many different ways to assess your need for Legacy Software Modernization. The initial steps you should take when considering modernization are to look at your existing software platform and consider your users, business departments or company as a whole.

 

Evaluating Existing Software

Evaluating Existing Software

It would be best if you completed a full assessment of your existing software and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the software still supported?
  • Does the software still have full functionality and efficiency?
  • Does the Legacy Software interface with other technology and components that the enterprise uses?

If, after your evaluation, you answered no to any of these questions, you probably need to modernize your legacy applications because your system cannot function at advanced levels.

Evaluating Your Business

f you need further details into whether or not modernization is a project investment you need to make, you should ask yourself the following questions about your business or company:

  • What are your business goals?
  • How have your business processes changed?
  • How have your business goals evolved?
  • Does your business have complex needs?
  • Does your software properly support your business today?
  • Does your company have software scalability issues?

While these questions allow for more open-ended thinking, they still yield similar results to the software questions. If your business has evolved, plans to implement changes for growth, and requires more complex solutions and capabilities, you will need modernized software and innovation to accommodate your needs.

 

Approaches to Legacy System Modernization

Approaches to Legacy System Modernization

Modernization encompasses a range of methods that depend on you and your business goals. These methods include the following:

  • Upgrade existing technology.
  • Add new software and tools that are equipped to handle your business goals and evolution.
  • Rewrite existing code to replace legacy code.
  • Move your business from one platform to the proper platform.
  • Implement a development platform that creates a different environment for your data and databases, such as a Cloud infrastructure or browser.
  • Employ machine learning–an artificial intelligence application–that automatically keeps the software up-to-date with changes to enhance the user experience.
  • Encapsulation (bundling data and keeping it stored elsewhere), such as with a cloud based system.

Whenever addressing legacy modernization, the ideal adoption, upgrade and integration should include some semblance of reimagination. Reimagining legacy transformation, should encompass capturing data and re-working it to form patterns and organizations to benefit you and your business.

Our Approach to Legacy Application Modernization

Our Approach to Legacy System Modernization

We take an initial analytical and holistic approach to determine the main reasons and best proceedings before recommending a software platform digital transformation. We consider the modernization cost, the ROI, effort and risk before eventually evaluating other benefits. Ultimately, our attack plan involves transforming your existing software into a solution that is equipped to work within the proper platform and environment for you.

For all of our modernization processes, we focus on three essential steps to formulate an upgrade plan:

  1. Get a thorough understanding of the business goals and current processes.
  2. Investigate all touchpoints within your organization or team that can help to maximize the benefits of software modernization at little additional cost and minimum resources – yielding tremendous benefits to your top and bottom lines.
  3. Recognize what factors and aspects are a problem and need modernization.
  4. Develop the task of creating a comprehensive modernization implementation plan.

Our initial steps are essential to reach step four. We need to understand your entire business and stakeholders in order to identify all potential opportunities. Plus, we need to know what aspects of your existing system architecture needs revamping, as well as the complexity, benefits and expected ROI before developing an appropriate modernization plan.

For example, if your business goal is to accommodate a large consumer-base, we can formulate a specific method to accommodate and exceed customer expectations with great agility.

 

Client Example: Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group

In Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group’s case, the company worked with dated software, making them rank lower within the industry’s busy marketplace.

The company needed to change its processes to keep up with the changing market and ultimately grow. More specifically, Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group wanted to develop and implement its own software.

We first met with Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group to evaluate their existing software and understand their business-critical platform before outlining the teams necessary strategy to bolster growth. To determine the best software needed, we had to research their problems and challenges, and determine which software would yield results and sustain a strong foundation for the company in the long run in order to maintain an edge over the competition.

To benefit Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group the most, we developed a high-quality marketing module complete with custom software to account for all of the company’s unique needs. From there, we said goodbye to their legacy system and hello to new, upgraded software complete with documentation.

Since the Legacy System Modernization, Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group has risen to number one among the competitors within their industry, serving more than 75,000 clients and increasing their performance by more than 10X. They are now almost 3X larger than their nearest competitor.

 

Benefits of Legacy Software Modernization

Benefits of Legacy System Modernization

Legacy System Modernization yields many benefits, mostly because without an upgrade, the software code structure becomes obsolete and incapable of handling modern applications and software security updates. Therefore, modernizing your legacy technology will result in lower security risk, error risk, low-speed, and cost reductions. We will help your business maintain control over software systems with a variety of modernization options.

For example, in 2015, the National Background Information Bureau run by the US government suffered a massive hack because of its legacy technology. The critical systems’ out-of-date software left the company vulnerable to cyber-attacks and errors, allowing a hack to occur. The leak led to Legacy Software Modernization, which involved a comprehensive replatform implementation, so that the software could withstand any potential risks from that point forward.

Since modernization does not need to rewrite or rebuild fundamental logic or algorithms in place, the upgrade yields a decrease in Quality Assurance costs. Similarly, since modernization can update existing code rather than rewrite it, you will see a reduction in cost concerning developmental needs.

Modernization strategies concerning code may involve code refactoring. This method allows developers to decompile existing code and compile it into a binary format. Binary code optimizes the system and makes it run faster. In other words, the system will run faster, whereas a system that isn’t modernized will run at a sluggish pace.

The most important impact of legacy software staying in use is security vulnerabilities. If your company is running mission-critical operations with any of these systems or platforms, give us a call to discuss any possible projects.

Benefits of Legacy Software Modernization

  • Windows XP
  • FoxPro and Visual FoxPro (VFP)
  • Java (6,7)
  • APIs (API updates)
  • Nitro Pro
  • WinZip
  • GOM Media Player
  • Flash Player (Active X)
  • DivX
  • Obsolete Drivers
  • Adobe Shockwave Player
  • Outdated Apps
  • Internet Explorer 11 and older versions

Final Thoughts

There are no benefits to running on a dated Legacy System. Investing in Legacy System Modernization and software replacement will allow your business to flourish just as it did for cases such as the Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group.  Implementing a strong modernization project will equip your system with the necessary software design and updates to handle current IE and browsers while simultaneously reducing risks and costs, meeting requirements and increasing the business value.

Since technology drastically changes every year, now is the time to optimize your systems’ application architecture and bolster your business attributes as many other successful companies and enterprises have already done.  A strong modernization strategy to update legacy code is crucial to the success of your business.

Final Thoughts on Dated Legacy Systems

 

Facts RE: Legacy Software Modernization

  • Legacy software modernization is the process of updating outdated software to more modern standards.
  • The modernization process can involve anything from simply updating software to run on newer hardware, to completely rewriting the code to take advantage of newer programming paradigms.
  • Legacy software often contains a lot of “cruft” – old code that is no longer needed but is still there because it was once needed.
  • Modernization can help reduce this cruft and make the code more maintainable.
  • It can also make the code more performant, by taking advantage of newer hardware and software features.
  • Modernization can be a very costly and time-consuming process, so it is often only undertaken when absolutely necessary.
  • It is often difficult to get buy-in from stakeholders for a modernization project, as they may not see the need for it or may be worried about the cost.

 

Facts RE: Legacy Systems Modernization

  • Legacy Systems Modernization is about not only transforming an organization to meet the demands of a rapidly expanding digital environment but also by updating the organization’s outdated legacy computer systems and software.
  • The goal of this modernization is to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and improve security.
  • Older systems either can be replaced with new systems, or be updated in-place.
  • In-place legacy systems modernization can be achieved through component-based development, service-oriented architecture, and virtualization.
  • New systems can also be built from scratch, or can be acquired through mergers and acquisitions.
  • The decision to modernize a legacy system(s) should be based on a cost-benefit analysis.
  • Such modernization of older systems can be a complex and costly undertaking.
  • A business’s organizational culture can be significantly impacted by a legacy system’s modernization process.
  • Modernizing an older system can be a risky proposition resulting in failures that lead to loss of data and business interruption. Make sure that you have a good plan in place.

 

Statistics RE: Legacy Software Modernization

  • The global legacy software modernization market is expected to grow from USD 2.09 Billion in 2016 to USD 4.29 Billion by 2021, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 14.8% during the forecast period.
  • The North American legacy software modernization market is expected to grow from USD 0.73 Billion in 2016 to USD 1.46 Billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 14.9% during the forecast period.
  • The European legacy software modernization market is expected to grow from USD 0.61 Billion in 2016 to USD 1.23 Billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 15.0% during the forecast period.
  • The Asia-Pacific (APAC) legacy software modernization market is expected to grow from USD 0.74 Billion in 2016 to USD 1.52 Billion by 2021, at a CAGR of 15.2% during the forecast period.

 

Statistics RE: Legacy Systems Modernization

  • The cost of legacy systems modernization can be significant, with some estimates suggesting it can be as high as 10 times the cost of the original system.
  • The process of modernization a legacy system(s) can be complex, and often requires the use of specialized tools and techniques.
  • The process can be disruptive to business operations, and can require significant changes to business processes – many of them beneficial.
  • Revolutionary modernization is a complete, from-the-ground-up undertaking. This type of transformation can be risky, resulting in the loss of data or functionality, if not done properly.
  • Legacy systems Evolutionary modernization can take many years to complete. It is a multi-phased, long-term model.
  • Modernizing legacy systems can be an opportunity to improve the quality of the software, and to add new features, functionality and benefits.
  • It is also an opportunity to improve the security of the system, and to address any vulnerabilities.

 

Topical Authority Questions RE: Legacy Software Modernization

What are the business goals for legacy software modernization?
The ideal goal is to achieve significant leaps in performance/ efficiency, agility and innovation. . Reducing costs is often a primary goal, as legacy software can be expensive to maintain and upgrade. Modernization can help reduce these costs by improving the codebase and making it easier to maintain. Improving efficiency is another common goal, as legacy software can often be inefficient and slow.

What are the technical challenges with the legacy software?

Some of the technical challenges with legacy software modernization include:

  • Outdated software can be difficult to run on modern hardware and operating systems.
  • Legacy software may not be compatible with newer software applications.
  • Older software may not be able to take advantage of newer technologies and current needs within the organization.
  • Legacy software can be difficult to maintain and support.
  • Outdated software can be a security risk.
  • Legacy software can be expensive to upgrade or replace.

What is the current architecture of the legacy software?

The legacy software is often a monolithic application that was built using the waterfall methodology. It may be comprised of a large number of tightly coupled components, which makes it difficult to make changes to the code without affecting other parts of the system. The software is often not very scalable, so it cannot handle a large number of users.

What are some of the dependencies of the legacy software?

  • The legacy software may depend on other software applications in order to function properly.
  • Legacy software is usually reliant on a particular vendor for a key piece of software or hardware. When that vendor goes out of business or stops supporting the product, it could be a disaster.
  • It may require a specific version of a database or a certain type of operating system.
  • Legacy software may also depend on hardware that is no longer available, such as requiring a specific type of printer or a certain type of computer.

What is the estimated effort required for legacy software modernization?
The amount of effort required for legacy software modernization will vary depending on the specific software system being updated. To make the process more efficient, it is advisable to first define the goals and objectives of the modernization project upfront. This will help ensure that the right team is assembled and that everyone is working towards the same goal. Once the collection of critical information from the source data is completed, it will help inform your modernization options.
What is the expected return on investment for legacy software modernization?

The expected return on investment (ROI) for legacy software modernization will vary depending on the specific software being modernized, the company’s goals for the modernization project, and the resources invested. In general, the ROI for legacy software modernization can be expected to fall into one of three categories: cost savings, revenue enhancement, or risk reduction.

What are the risks associated with legacy software modernization?

One of the most significant risks is the potential for data loss. When legacy software is modernized, the data stored in the legacy system may be lost or corrupted. This can happen if the data is not properly migrated to the new system, or if the new system is not compatible with the legacy system. Another risk is that the new system may not be able to handle the volume of data that is being migrated – but this is highly unlikely.

What are the potential impacts of legacy software modernization?

One benefit is that legacy software modernization can help an organization keep up with the latest technology trends. Additionally, it can help improve software quality and reduce maintenance costs can also improve software interoperability and portability as well as improve security and compliance.

What are the stakeholder expectations for legacy software modernization?

Since business leaders drive innovation at their companies, they need new technologies to enable and support their innovations in a real-world environment. Stakeholders expect that the process of modernization will improve the overall quality and performance of the software, while also making it more compatible with current hardware and software platforms. They want fast applications, systems that support connectivity, and platforms that bring everything together. Additionally, stakeholders may also expect that the modernization process will help to improve the security of the software and make it more resistant to potential attacks.

What is the budget for legacy software modernization?

Updating existing software and systems seems like a costly endeavor and initially it is. But the benefits and consequently the savings over the long term make it worth it. The budget for legacy software modernization will vary depending on the specific needs of the organization in question. However, instead of asking how much legacy modernization costs, the real question to ask is how much maintaining legacy systems costs.
 

Topical Authority Questions RE: Legacy Systems Modernization

What are the motivations for wanting to modernize legacy systems?
Some of the many motivations for wanting to modernize legacy systems include:

  • Improve system performance.
  • Improve system reliability.
  • Improve system security.
  • Improve system flexibility.
  • Improve system maintainability.
  • Improve system compatibility.
  • Improve system usability.
  • Improve system scalability.

What are the benefits of legacy systems modernization?
One of the most important benefits of legacy systems modernization is that it can help organizations keep up with the latest technology trends. Additionally, modernization can help improve system performance, security, and reliability. It can also help reduce costs associated with maintaining legacy systems.

What are the key components of a successful legacy systems modernization strategy?
The key components of a successful legacy systems modernization strategy will vary depending on the specific legacy system(s) being modernized, the resources and capabilities of the organization, and the desired outcomes of the modernization effort.

However, there are some general principles that should be followed in order to maximize the chances of success.

  • Create a strong, flexible foundation for application development.
  • Taking a software-based approach to modernization is essential for creating a cost-effective and responsive system.
  • Create a value-focused program.
  • Support open, standards-based methodologies that will limit future recoding/reintegration work and ensure that corporate growth won’t be restrained by vendor lock-in and/or IT constraints.
  • Ensure the ability to extend applications to the cloud within their modernization strategy.
  • Optimize user interface.
  • Ensure application responsiveness.

What are the risks associated with the overall legacy systems modernization process?

  • One of the major risks associated with the overall legacy systems modernization is that the process may not be completed successfully. This can lead to a number of problems, including the loss of data, decreased productivity, and increased costs.
  • The process of modernization can be very disruptive to business operations leading to significant downtime and lost productivity.
  • The process may take longer than expected causing disruptions to business operations and may require additional resources.

What are the best practices for legacy systems modernization?
The best practices for legacy systems modernization will vary depending on the specific legacy system being modernized.
However, some general tips that may be helpful to mitigate the challenges associated with legacy systems modernization include:

    • Conduct a thorough assessment of the legacy system to be modernized. This assessment should include an analysis of the system’s current architecture, performance, scalability, security, and compliance posture.
    • Define the method of division of the applications being updated by taking the most critical applications first and then handling the rest.
    • Set up some tools and design applications to support legacy practices so that the current business flow will not be affected during the transition period.
    • Ensure that all possible test conditions and cases are well defined and pre-set for the testing phase.

What are the major risks associated with NOT modernizing legacy systems?

  • There are risks associated with not modernizing legacy systems.
  • Developers who developed specific applications are no longer in the organization or connected to the application.
  • Used third-party application not available.
  • Applications that lack the agility to keep pace with the demands of digital business may be a cost or risk liability.
  • The system becomes increasingly difficult to support and maintain over time.
  • As new technologies are developed and adopted, the legacy system will become increasingly incompatible, making it more difficult and expensive to keep up with the changes.
  • Decreased productivity and efficiency and frustration among users.
  • Legacy systems can become a security risk.

 

How RE: Legacy Software Modernization

How do we know when our legacy software is in need of modernization?

  • There are a few key indicators that suggest when software may be in need of modernization. When enterprises are spending a high percentage of their IT budget on maintaining and operating legacy systems which are often both inefficient and completely outdated, it’s time to modernize.
  • When the software is no longer able to support the needs of users. Delays of any kind will hinder adoption, productivity and customer satisfaction rates. This may be due to the software being outdated or no longer compatible with new hardware or operating systems.
  • When software is no longer able to meet the demands of the business due to the software being unable to scale or support new features or integrations.

How do we prioritize which legacy software systems to modernize first?

The decision of which legacy software system to modernize first will vary depending on the specific circumstances of each organization. However, some factors that could be considered when making this decision include the age of the legacy system, the level of support and maintenance required, the degree of integration with other systems, the business criticality of the system, and the resources available to modernize the system.

How do we determine the best approach to modernizing our legacy software?
The best approach to modernizing legacy software will vary depending on the specific software in question and the resources and constraints of the organization.

  • Start with an assessment of your business needs rather than the technology you’d like to implement. Legacy modernization is not just an IT endeavor. It is a business endeavor.
  • Conduct a thorough assessment of the legacy software to identify its current state and performance. This assessment should include an analysis of the codebase, dependencies, architecture, and any other relevant factors.
  • In many cases only applications deemed critical to business should be modernized while the legacy software apps can be simply retired, saving time and money on maintenance.
  • Hire a group of professionals, such as InterSoft to assist in the process.

 

How RE: Legacy Systems Modernization

How do legacy systems impact business operations?
There are a number of ways in which legacy systems can impact business operations. One of the most common is through the increased costs associated with maintaining and supporting these older systems. In many cases, businesses are forced to keep legacy systems running in order to support critical business processes or maintain data integrity. Legacy systems often require specialized skills and knowledge to keep them running. Additionally, they may not be able to take advantage of newer, more efficient technologies. This can make them less productive and less cost-effective and can result in increased IT costs. Finally, in the current business environment modernizing is about transforming your organization to meet the demands of a rapidly expanding digital environment. Legacy systems modernization is not simply for the sake of upgrading. It is the upgrading of outdated systems to make sure your business stays relevant and agile.

Who RE: Legacy Software Modernization

Who will be responsible for modernizing the legacy software?
The replacing of legacy applications and systems with systems based on new and different technologies is one of the information systems (IS) professional’s most significant responsibilities. The organization that uses the software will be responsible for modernizing the software, as they are the ones who will be using it and who will need to keep it up-to-date. They may choose to hire an outside expert team to implement the modernization who can make an honest assessment of where digital transformation is needed.
Who will be responsible for training users on the new software?
The training of users on new software is the responsibility of the software development team. This team is responsible for developing the software and ensuring that it is user-friendly. They will also be responsible for providing training to users on how to use the software.

Who will be responsible for data migration?
In general, whoever is responsible for managing the data within the organization will also be responsible for data migration. This could be a dedicated data team, a central IT team, or even an outside business unit specific team. The key is to ensure that there is a clear owner of the data who is responsible for its accuracy, completeness, and security.

Who RE: Legacy Systems Modernization?

Who is responsible for legacy systems modernization?
The responsibility for legacy systems modernization will vary depending on the specific organization and context. However, senior leadership should be aware of and committed to the need for legacy systems modernization. Understanding one’s business needs and capabilities will help determine the right approach. A clear business case should be developed for why legacy systems modernization is necessary. And a close look at all interconnected components, systems and applications must be made since it is not smart to update one component without understanding how it will affect other applications and systems.


 

The Risks of Using Microsoft Access

Microsoft Access debuted in 1992 as part of the Microsoft Office suite of office productivity...

The Risks of Using Visual FoxPro

Microsoft Visual FoxPro is a discontinued 32-bit architecture-based relational database management...
Understand FoxPro and End of Life Migrations from InterSoft Associates

Left Out in the Code: FoxPro and End of Life Migrations

FoxPro and Visual FoxPro were Microsoft database management systems that were discontinued in...
Custom Software Development from InterSoft Associates to reach more customers in New York City
InterSoft Associates Business Process Improvment Software helping New York City businesses be more efficient

We’ve been serving Long Island, New York City and the Tri-State area for more than 30 years. This gives us a unique understanding of older, legacy systems.