The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 has forced many of us to sit down and re-evaluate how we do business. Do our companies meet the needs of the changing environment? Are we still relevant to our customer base? And can they still access our services when there is a lockdown or other barrier? Unfortunately, unexpected events can happen, and they can be detrimental to business. That’s why many companies seek to renew their commitment to technology solutions and invest in IT modernization.
What is IT modernization, and why does it matter?
Planning for the future is an essential part of every business, no matter whether you own a small café or an international firm, and technology is a massive part of that. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, this trend only accelerated. 66% of businesses completing IT modernization initiatives that had previously faced resistance, while 55% made a commitment to implementing IT changes as part of a long-term strategy.
While COVID-19 might be a once-in-a-generation event, or perhaps not, it is a stark reminder of how swiftly things can change. In 2020, the IMF estimated a downturn of 4.4% in the world economy with many countries in recession, and this dramatically impacts businesses of all sizes.
Keeping your business relevant often means onboarding innovative solutions, such as IT infrastructure modernization. But what does that phrase mean exactly? Undoubtedly, every business doesn’t need a high-spec tech stack to back it up. Well, yes and no. Not every company requires ultra-modern solutions, such as blockchain, to help them function, but IT modernization can be utilized by almost all businesses.
Why are modern applications the backbone of IT modernization?
So, then, how can IT infrastructure modernization help your company, and why exactly are modern applications the backbone of IT modernization? Nowadays, it seems there’s an app for everything from checking your email to reviewing orders to making a purchase online. Chances are your business could benefit too. Modern applications can come in many shapes and sizes, from an app that lets your customers make purchases from you to back-end services that make your company more productive. There’s a solution to (almost) every issue. Whether you need help with business analysis, automation of paperwork processes, or something truly unique, IT modernization can help.
How does IT modernization look in your industry?
Let’s take a look at some of the modern IT infrastructure modernization solutions being implanted in a number of spheres.
From a handy app that lets your customers make purchases from the comfort of their homes to stock-taking in your warehouse to the latest try-on technology, retail has gone digital. Shopping is no longer just an in-store experience, and your employees are no longer just cashiers.
The entire experience has gone digital, and your customers expect more. Whether this is about creating a unique online experience or upgrading your brick and mortar in-store experience to ensure it is safe and comfortable, IT modernization is one way to go about it.
Real-life example. See our case study on an OKR application for a retailer and learn how we modernized their objectives and fundamental results framework.
The services industry is growing across all business areas. One online video streaming platform reported growth of 2.2 million paid subscribers in Q3. A well-known online mega-store told of its $96.1 billion revenue for the same Q3 period. And these are not just digital unicorns. Growth of digital services rocketed during the pandemic, and that trend seems to be continuing. Even online education is benefiting, with a market value estimated at $350 billion by 2025. Many companies are stepping back to revaluate how their services can be adapted to the digital world or how IT modernization can improve their current operations.
Real-life example. Discover how we used IT modernization to boost online learning communication on Web, iOS, and Android platforms.
In a post-COVID-19 world, logistics could not be more critical. Getting goods and services to where they need to be when they need to be is essential. Despite a downturn in air travel, the need to ship goods from one place to another hasn’t changed. The market remains global. So, how can a company stay relevant and plan for the future with logistics? Modern IT solutions help companies to safely, securely, and swiftly transport goods from one place to another. By monitoring the logistics process, businesses can optimize the supply chain and make improvements to overall efficiency.
Real-life example. Explore our innovative solution for an air service provider to deliver automatic flight information that meets the highest safety standards.
Above we told of some of the industries that we’ve worked with in IT modernization, but that doesn’t mean if your sphere isn’t listed that improvements are not needed. Upgrades in technology can be beneficial to almost every area. The only limitation is the desire to improve.
Three top tips for successful IT modernization (no matter your business)
IT modernization might be a modern-day business essential, but that doesn’t mean diving in head-first is the best way to go about it. Here are the best tips for getting your IT modernization project off on the right track.
1. Have a plan
Like all areas of business, upgrading the IT stack requires planning. Failure to plan usually means planning to fail, so before you get going, it’s time to set out your IT modernization roadmap. This outlines the areas of your business you aim to improve and precisely how you want to improve them. Doing so allows you to reasonably plan out your IT improvement plan and its implementation. It also allows you to adjust your expectations – change won’t happen overnight – and think IT modernization long-term.
Areas to consider:
- What processes can be optimized?
- Which areas of my business can be automated?
- What are my competitors doing right now?
- Which areas of my business could stand to be upgraded?
- What resources and tools do I currently have available?
- Is my team ready for change?
2. Don’t forget about legacy software
Chances are that your company currently has some tools, software or solutions that they are currently working with. Whether this is a project management tool, time tracker, or old application, what this means is that you have legacy software. Before starting your IT application modernization journey, it’s time to take account of what you already have and evaluate how you can upgrade or rebuild.
For many companies, one of the key concerns is data and data protection. This means that when choosing to upgrade, you need to first consider how you can incorporate and take care of legacy software and data to ensure your new solution is up to the task and your IT remains secure.
Areas to consider:
- What software or tools do I currently have on hand?
- How do these meet my current needs/expectations?
- Do I deal with data and data protection?
- Do I want to start from scratch or rebuild what I currently have?
3. Make IT modernization integral to your business
In no circumstance should IT modernization happen for modernization’s sake alone. Conversely, it should be an integral part of your overall business and help you move forward in your aims. The most successful solutions out there are not always the most glamorous. However, they solve vital business issues.
For example, this can be optimizing data collection from form filling or tracking your products movement from A to B to improve the supply chain. Perhaps, you need a Big Data solution that tells you more about your customers to drive the business forward. However, no matter what it is, the solution you engage should be directly tailored to your company and its needs, no one else’s.
Areas to consider:
- What direction is my business moving in?
- What do I need to move forward?
- Which solutions have industry competitors engaged, so far?
- How can I get my team on board?
- What does IT modernization mean for the overall scope of my business?
IT modernization round-up
Worldwide, more and more companies are choosing to upgrade their technology stack with modern solutions designed specifically to solve modern problems. Right now, the question is not if you should upgrade. It’s how and when. But, before taking the first steps into IT modernization, it’s vital to take a step back and evaluate the most effective way for your business to engage modern applications to get the maximum results.