Modernizing Legacy Software Products Ensures ISV’s Survival

Technological disruptions and innovative business models have made traditional ISVs (Independent Software Vendors) almost extinct while transforming every business into a digital business. Some of the key drivers of this transformation include the adoption of the cloud and SaaS-based business model, which allow vendors to make a rapid transition from a cloud-first approach to cloud-only approach.

Clearly, ISVs have to modify themselves to reveal a higher level of technological competence in order to meet the exponential technological requirements of the businesses. In simple words, they need to acquire the expertise to deliver inventive solutions to their customers. On the contrary, if ISVs fail to modernize themselves, chances are, they may get extinct by 2025.

The challenges that a typical ISV faces in its modernization pursuit is that majority of the companies are still struggling to understand the need of transforming their business and systems. It is imperative to undergo the transformation of legacy systems and processes, nevertheless, the involved costs and risks are comparatively high. Transforming existing legacy systems without disrupting new systems and infrastructure, requires a system that provides an access to the existing systems.

Software products and their future:

· Let’s check that how technology and disrupted business models are impacting software products and ISVs.

· We are witnessing a shift from traditional software licensing model to Software as a Service (SaaS) licensing model. Also, the enterprise software is rapidly transforming into enterprise SaaS.

· As businesses are gearing up for the adoption of transformative business models, they have started utilizing utility computing and SaaS, while moving from Capex to Opex model.

· The revolutionary shift to platform-centric world empowered businesses to operate in new ways. New platforms will support every software product as a producer, consumer or match-maker.

· Since businesses are becoming more interdependent and connected, ISVs will no longer have to handle software product’s configurations, integrations, and functions independently.

· Micro-services based architectures and digital applications will rapidly replace monolithic architectures and standalone applications.

· Universal computing, high-quality performance and consumer grade UX/DX/CX in enterprise SaaS applications will be driven by customer’s expectations and demands.

Factors stopping ISVs from getting modernized:

Though businesses are looking for technology modernization, still ISV’s are holding back themselves from modernizing their software products, why? Let’s check:

Outdated technologies and skills: The ISV are still running their thousands of software products on legacy technologies like Progress, FoxPro, COBOL etc., due to which their maintenance becomes difficult. Also, the developers and engineers who have built these software products, have the outdated skillset which is one of the biggest hindrances for ISV’s modernization. However, these engineers have skilled expertise in various legacy technologies, they lack much-needed skills required for modernizing ISVs.

Cost consideration: Undoubtedly, ISV had invested their significant resources, time, money to build enterprise-class software products/applications. Therefore, even after knowing the fact that the obsolete technology and the product have no future, they continue to run those software products. It is very usual for ISVs to get trapped by such cost considerations and finding it difficult to consider future requirements.

Fear of failure and risk aversion: Many ISVs have a perception that modernization is inherently risky practice with no certainties. Possibly, they are unsure of the right modernization strategy or maybe lacking required capacity and resources. Thus, for various reasons, risk-aversion and fear failure, ISVs keep the modernization discussion off the table.

Modernization and transformation is the only solution:

In this rapidly changing technological landscape, businesses are moving to digital platforms. If an ISV fails to do so, it may become extinct or die after a certain period. To avoid this death spiral, ISVs must rethink to adopt new technologies to transform their legacy software into digital native applications.