Ensuring your sales and purchase order processes run smoothly, properly managing your supply chain and minimising costs where you can is absolutely vital. Add in the need to embrace online selling, exceed customer expectations and attract and retain staff, and businesses have a lot to contend with.
If you’re used to using creaky legacy software, however, then you may be paying the price for using these more “out-dated” offerings. Legacy software offers little, if any, in the way of business intelligence, automation or integration capabilities that can help with the issues or strategic drivers mentioned above. As a result, you could well find it a struggle to deal with the heightened productivity, costs and customer experience demands that are expected of businesses today.
Modern ERP software developed using the latest technologies, on the other hand, supports ongoing real-time change, embedded analytics, advance automation and stock management capabilities as well as facilitating growth and diversification with ease.
If you’ve become set in your ways when it comes to your software, we’ll take a look at the issues affecting your operations that you should watch out for.
What is legacy business/ERP software?
A legacy enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is an outdated software application that relies on old technology to manage current business requirements.
Maintaining legacy software can be detrimental to your business operations in several different ways, creating issues with data breaches, performance problems and non-compliance with security standards.
Even with the considerable problems it causes, legacy software is often kept in use simply because it’s installed as part of a business’ system and has proven too difficult, or too expensive, to replace. It may even seem like the software is entirely irreplaceable, leading businesses to stick with this outdated software for far longer than they need to.
What problems do legacy systems create?
Lack of scalability and flexibility
Legacy systems lack modern functionality, which means they’re limited in terms of how flexible, scalable and customisable they are. This severely inhibits a business’ ability to adapt to changing trends and working practices, while limiting the number of features an enterprise can benefit from.
Upgrading to a modern ERP system can bring a wealth of benefits way beyond the reach of any legacy platform. From enhanced mobility to boundless opportunities for scaling and customisation, it’s an essential step for any enterprise that wants to retain its edge in an increasingly competitive industry landscape.
Increased security risks
It’s no secret that cybercrime is on the rise. As hackers fine-tune their approaches, data breaches, ransomware attacks and cybersecurity issues increase accordingly. Since they’re often no longer supported, or updated, by the vendor that created them, legacy software, somewhat predictably, is a little like leaving the backdoor open.
With no updates or patches available to support and address security weaknesses, hackers are free to wander in and exploit your software without issue, all of which puts your business at enormous risk. If you’ve experienced cyberattacks recently, then it may have been caused by your legacy software.
Slow performance and regular crashes
When you’ve a busy day ahead of you, there’s nothing more frustrating than software that groans under the weight of the simplest of actions. If it’s clocked up a fair amount of time with your company, legacy software stands no chance of providing your teams with efficient, streamlined performance.
And where slow loading, frequent lags and crashes abound, workarounds designed to account for the poor performance are never far behind. Software shouldn’t need shortcuts, fail-safes and alternative methods just to circumvent its problems. If you find yourself using workarounds to deal with simple tasks, then the warning signs are clear: you need new software.
Not compatible with new software
New technology and older software go together like oil and water, unfortunately. Legacy software, for the most part, was designed to be standalone. As such, integration with other pieces of software was never part of its DNA. While that may have been sufficient at one point, this lack of integration can stand in the way of your business’ flexibility and scalability.
If you’re to fully benefit from new technologies, it’s well worth considering replacing your legacy systems with a modern solution that offers REST API integration capabilities. This way, it can be properly integrated with the variety of modern tech platforms your company uses.
Costly to maintain
One of the reasons that businesses are so beholden to their legacy systems is the assumption that migrating to new software is a costly expense. In reality, it can be far cheaper than maintaining outdated software. By dint of their age, legacy software is prone to issues which require ongoing and expensive upkeep.
Remember, the majority of legacy software solutions are no longer supported by the developers, simply because they aren’t sold anymore. If you have issues that need to be dealt with, then the vendor won’t be able to offer any assistance. Although third-party help may be available, as the technology becomes increasingly obsolete, the amount of support you receive may start to dwindle too.
Moreover, the operating costs can chip away at your business capital, as well as your ability to innovate or scale when you need to. Consider the downtime too. Every time your system or software hit a bump, the halt in your operations will reflect poorly on your business’ reputation
New staff struggle with it
If new staff have to work with outdated software, then even the most extensive training sessions may prove fruitless, especially If they’re used to working on the latest software from their previous roles. Put simply, something that’s past its best isn’t going to cut it for very long. And where company image is concerned, it doesn’t exactly send the best message either.
Additionally, do you really want to spend time and resources getting them up to speed on inefficient methods and processes, especially if you know you’re going to invest in your software in the near future? The money you spend here could be better spent on new software which you can then train up your staff on properly.
Lack of compliance
With outdated systems and software, businesses are more likely to face problems with compliance since older systems don’t account for newer regulations. Where things like GDPR are concerned, the price for non-compliance can be huge, which means you’re putting your finances and your reputation at risk by continuing to use legacy software.
Looking for future-ready, scalable software designed to deal with whatever the future throws at your business? Intact offers an exhaustive range of business management and ERP solutions that supports all aspects of your operations. For more information, head here or get in touch us today.