The evolution of technology from mainframe, to open systems and now cloud has left the need to reconcile what you have and guide your path forward:

  • Replace systems (Migration to new)
  • Retain Systems (Archive to optimize and add value and compliance)
  • Re-Write Systems (Update to extend life)
  • Retire/Run-out systems (Reduce costs and complexities by eliminating legacy systems)

We don’t appreciate the need and challenge in making this happen unless we look over time the trends, the challenges and the opportunity.

Novarica is a thought leading consultancy focused on the needs of technology in the insurance industry. A recent report that includes projections in FY2019 budgeting was just released that shows how – in total – spending in IT is flat.

IT Spend as a percentage of revenues

“But while the results are broadly consistent with last year’s projections, we are seeing the beginnings of two subtle shifts: from core systems to digital, data, and security, and from CapEx to OpEx, driven by the growth of cloud applications.”

Matthew Josefowisz, CEO Novarica

Further, the reports shows the following by if the spend is focused on core applications or other parts of the IT spend.

Spend by (1) Run, (2) Grow and (3) Transform

Consider how much of these measures are dedicated spends in ‘core applications and infrastructure’ that could be reduced to fund the ‘grow’ and ‘transform’ needs in the business. Even a ‘subtle shift’ of a 5% move from ‘run’ budget to ‘grow’ and ‘transform’ will make the difference between being a market leader or laggard.

Where would the 5% come from?

In every conversation people know the low hanging fruit – those systems that represent the dead, dying or zombies that are still running. Still consuming power in the data center. Still having maintenance paid for support calls never made or upgrades never done. Here is a short list of things to look for in your environment:

  • OLD READ-ONLY ZOMBIE – Even after move takes place to the newest technology, it is likely that all the available data was not migrated. Every organization has to weight the age of the data versus the cost to migrate. For instance, the number of Peoplesoft HR systems still running AFTER an organization has moved to Workday are in the 1000s. The older your company, the more likely this is the case. Legacy pension data, retirement information, data that is important in your firm that was not able to be moved.
You Are allowing the zombie to live
  • OLDER VERSIONS OF EXISTING APP – Over the last 20 years the SAP architecture has grown in size, complexity and inability to be upgraded in place. So each production system was a provisioning of a new instance and data was migrated. This leaves an older version still running – for reasons unknown. Maybe the migration left some older data behind. In moving to SAP HANA, there are limits to the age of some data that is migrated.
  • DUPLICATED EVERYWHERE – For every production system, there could very well be a test, dev, sandbox, disaster recovery copy sitting 1000s of miles away. For every CPU core of a database in zombie production that could easily be 3x actually running in total.
  • MERGER/ACQUISITION ZOMBIE – One of the top ‘values’ gained through a merger is consolidation of systems – do more with less. For every headline of one company buying or merging with another, that means there are two of everything. That reconciliation is long, painful and decisions of how much detail is moved into the winning application is messy. How many old AS/400s are still running to look up old tax data? Old HR data? Old claims data? This results in a combination of migration, archiving and retirement.

The results would be less maintenance paid to ‘zombie technology vendors’, the ability to consolidate data centers, megawatts of less power consumed and having people be more focused on what is needed next with the IT department.

Allow Platform 3 Solutions to show you how we bring the right people, partnerships and products in helping clients start this zombie-cleanup. This is all we do is help get rid of the zombies, and find that 5% in your IT budget that is wasted allowing you to invest in the future.

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