Modernization: The concept isn’t new, but the form factor may be. This is due in most part to the consumption models of cloud, SaaS, and hybrid offers that are now available. Modernization has taken many shapes over the past 20 years because of the technologies that are available at any given time.
Many clients have been doing the same thing, the same way, for more years than they can remember. They can’t think about modernizing and doing things differently. For example, one client’s contact center answers calls as if the customer didn’t take any other actions before picking up the phone. Ludicrous, right? But it’s happening all the time, everywhere. Think about how you’re taking care of your customers.
What does this mean?
Modernization breaks away from the “like-for-like” migration path. It is sometimes very difficult for a company to migrate to the cloud in a true “like-for-like” fashion. Chances are, you aren’t modernizing when you ask for a “like-for-like” migration. However, the bigger issue is what are you missing by asking this of your systems integrator? Will you ever get to the next phase of modernizing?
The dilemma is in finding out what a move means for you. Do you have to train users and administrators? Do your administrators handle all systems now, and will they in the future? How about refining processes?
Cloud (and the path to cloud) allows for modernization to occur much more readily, with a comfort level that your business is taken care of. In the past, considerations were made regarding staffing, budget for the project and on-going support and maintenance, and interoperability. All these considerations are being addressed much easier and better than before.
Five Items to Consider for Modernization
1. Sweating Assets
Finance will ask for this, so let’s be ready. Do you have existing solutions that you’ve already purchased and are depreciating? If so, finance may ask you to hold off. The key here is to work with them so you know when a better time to ask would be. Build that timing into the budget and move forward. You can also do some side-by-side solutioning to gain benefits from both the new solution and the depreciated one.
2. Features You Can’t Live Without
Here’s the hard part. There will probably be some give-and-take about what you can’t live without, especially if you’ve customized it. Spend time in multi-functional teams to really understand what you can live without, and what is a “must have” in the solution set. The multi-functional team will weigh in on areas that may not be visible to just one team. For example, if IT thinks that no one is using a feature, but business analysts rely heavily on the report it generates… there’s probably a discussion that needs to take place there.
3. Security + Compliance
Modernization efforts provide a good time to look at any security or compliance concerns. As anyone in cybersecurity will tell you, “It’s not if, but when a cyberattack will take place.” It isn’t just about the network, or the customer database. It’s about the individuals, too—both employees and customers. All areas are subject to compromise. Safeguard the company, employees, and customers during this time.
4. New Features
The fun part! Which new solutions or features will propel you forward? How does this help your customers? Your employees? Your bottom line? Your top line? Ask yourself those questions when considering your modernization effort. It isn’t always about customer and employee satisfaction, unless you can directly correlate it to a financial gain.
The ultimate part of modernization. Why modernize? Answering this question will help you build your business case to deploy newer technologies that bring new benefits. Motivation can be aligned to the other four areas discussed. Is your system up for renewal? Are you concerned about security? Do you need new ways of conducting your business to attract talent? Customers? Will this help you save or make your company money? Do you need to do this to compete?
You can modernize more cost effectively than ever before. Now’s the time to think about the benefits modernization can bring to your business—in a timeline faster than ever imagined five years ago.