Digital Themes

Application Modernization

What is application modernization?

Application modernization is the process of rewriting existing software applications, updating them to adapt to newer languages, frameworks and infrastructure platforms. Many businesses are faced with legacy systems with outdated computing software or hardware that at one time met business needs but no longer allows for organizational growth. Often a business application that once satisfied its intended purpose may actually prevent interaction with newer computer systems. Application modernization transforms these older systems so that they can seamlessly interact with modern software applications.

There are many paths to IT transformation, including modernizing existing application architecture by rewriting existing code. Rearchitecting or rewriting portions of applications by altering original code allows legacy systems to access newer applications. Or an organization may decide to take a “rip and replace” approach to modernization, which, as the phrase suggests, involves replacing an entire software system with a newer system that more closely aligns with business process. A legacy application can also be reposted or re-platformed off the mainframe to the cloud, preserving the original code or features.

Cloud-native development is an emerging trend in application modernization that takes its cues from cloud-computing technologies to build, optimize and connect scalable applications quickly. These loosely coupled systems are resilient solutions that run entirely in the cloud for increased scalability and availability. Although there are many businesses on the cloud, the older legacy systems of so many others were not built for it. Forcing these systems to run in cloud environment ultimately creates performance issues, putting organizations at a competitive disadvantage.

With application modernization comes significant digital transformation, allowing businesses to:

  • Work in the cloud. Modernization of an existing legacy system can transform a company’s ability to transfer all of its key software systems to the cloud, relieving an organization of all of the costs associated with running and maintaining data centers.

  • Increase agility. Application modernization improves agility and productivity of legacy applications, improving employee performance. A modernized system can notably increase productivity and accelerate time to market, helping businesses maintain a competitive edge.

  • Avert risk. Monolithic applications operating in the cloud run the risk of failure with every new release and update. Running legacy systems at limited capacity in a cloud environment diminishes their overall performance, while cloud-native applications run seamlessly in the background, are scalable and easier to update.

  • Improve customer service. Good customer support helps businesses attract and retain customers. Modernizing legacy applications in client-facing environments improves system interactions between customers and companies, resulting in better service and repeat business.
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