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What is Application Modernization?

Or… It may not be what you think it is… don’t bet your career and your organization’s future on assuming you have it right.

So, what is Application Modernization?

Definition: Refers to the process of conversion, refactoring, rewriting, repurposing, or direct porting of a system to a more modern computer programming language, architecture, and infrastructure platform.

Application modernization often includes the word “legacy” in the definition which conjures up images of very old applications written in languages that run on platforms that include the word “iron” in their infrastructure such as COBOL or RPG.

Frequently legacy is defined loosely as “ancient”, “outdated” and “unsupported”.  More Better Technology defines legacy with a more standard definition that refers to a customer relative and defined need of replacement or improvement.  This often means that modernization is dealing with more current Java or .NET systems, just as frequently as COBOL, RPG, PL1 or other older technologies, that have grown unwieldy or are challenging to adapt as quickly as is necessary to support business needs.

At More Better Technology we focus on aligning the modernization approach with the strategies of the business and IT organizations in order to ensure that direct value is delivered and hindrances eliminated.  Tools and methodologies do not shortcut the need to align with the overall strategies as that alignment ensures direct value is delivered and there is no cookie-cutter, one size fits all approaches to modernization. Can Cloud be part of my modernization? Yes, if it aligns with your strategy and makes sense based upon the current architecture and constraints.

What application modernization is not  (or is Digital Modernization and Digital Transformation the same thing or different? )

Application modernization can be a part of an overall Digital Modernization strategy.  The modernization process should not be confused with Digital Transformation, which is a strategy to change organization processes, culture, personnel, and customer experiences.  The target of Digital Transformation is to improve the business model in order to realize overall performance and ability to align with the customer value.
Digital (Application) Modernization is the process to improve systems to be able to be used and consumed in a manner more aligned with current technologies, integrations, and enablement, and new processes to help fulfill the Digital Transformation and value-driven alignment.  Modernization is the technical process while Transformation is the overarching culture and process enabler driven by the organizations’ strategy.
Application modernization can many times be an accelerator in the Digital Transformation process by removing barriers in the IT systems that can serve to be challenges and detractors to the overall adoption.

Why consider application modernization?

Modernization can consist of several methods of modernization, manual and tool-driven; we will focus on tool-driven benefits as that is where our expertise and value are derived from.
  • Accelerating and alleviating many of the hindrances of the overall Digital Transformation process by supporting modern IT processes and tools that remove common barriers
  • Modern architecture that allows IT to support business and customer needs in a more simplistic and sustainable manner.
  • Our tool-based methodology can transform the language of the application to support a modern language and framework foundation – move from COBOL or .NET Webforms to modern language and toolset while preserving your screens, business logic, and other differentiators.
  • Cloud “native” architectures and automation that can align with current cloud strategy and solve many challenges by supporting modern infrastructure, automation and management, and good practices.
  • DevOps support and automation with a system that previously was not able to realize the time to market improvements, release at will capabilities, and improved and stable SDLC processes.
  • Timeline of modernization with our tool support methodology is a much shorter endeavor than manually rewriting the system or purchasing a replacement commercial off the shelf (COTS) system, oftentimes 3x-5x faster.
  • The cost of modernization with our tool-based methodology can be pennies on the dollar of other methodologies, not to mention the increase in productivity, decreased training, and removal of implementation licenses.
  • Internal talent is retained by leveraging existing skills and knowledge of the system to assist with the modernization process.  Internal talent is better prepared to increase time to market and preserve IT and business alignment postmodernization.
  • Internal intellectual property (IP) is retained and minimizes disruption by not having to reinvent every system’s business process and dependency.
  • Improved security practices can many times be added to harden and improve the security of the deployed application, as well as, the security practices of the SDLC processes and infrastructure models.
  • Improved data management and analysis are realized with data platform modernization, event, and message-driven capabilities, and modern tooling to support management and analysis.
  • Continual business value is able to be achieved with our tool-based methodology by allowing continual source system changes during the modernization process.

Contact us if you would like a free consultation on tool-driven application modernization and whether it aligns with your needs.