‘Legacy software’ exists when the functionality, ease of use, technology and methods used have deteriorated to unacceptable levels. Think of customers or users you can no longer serve properly, security issues, changes that are slow and costly to implement, or problematic integration with other modern systems and cloud platforms. It is time for renewal!
Three renewal scenarios
If a niche is too small for standard software or if there is a demonstrable financial benefit to be gained by deploying customization, it can be useful to (continue to) invest in custom applications. There are 3 different scenarios to future-proof your legacy application.
1. Modern portals
In application development, most of the development time goes to the ‘business logic’ layer and the user interface that overlays it (the screens that the users of the application see). In a legacy application, these are often outdated and no longer in line with the expectations of a new generation of users. Access for external target groups, such as customers and business partners, can also be an obstacle for an outdated legacy application.
On the other hand: after having used the existing application for years, internal 'power users' often like to have many fields and functions on one screen, something that is only possible to a limited extent with a web application. At the same time, after years of continued development of the existing system, this layer is also the most costly to replace.
A popular approach to extending the lifecycle of a legacy application, is to add new screens through one or more modern web portals that run in the browser. An additional advantage is that the legacy application can continue to communicate with other legacy applications. A 'hybrid scenario' is therefore also very popular: it is often a win-win, both for the users and in terms of the (limited) investment required.
- New look & feel, and better user experience
- Serving new external target groups with a limited investment
- Maintain integration with other legacy systems
- Some limitations of the old technology remain
- Limited innovations in business logic and workflows
- Possible additional licensing costs, due to an increasing number of technologies