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Legacy System Spreading IT Department too Thin?

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Legacy System Spreading IT Department too Thin?

Legacy System Spreading Your IT Department too Thin? It Might be Time to Upgrade.

You’re hanging on to an old legacy system, maybe it’s an old ERP or WMS that someone internally built and is a lot of work to maintain. The thought of creating something better becomes daunting because you can hardly keep up with what you have.  Your IT staff isn’t overly excited about the legacy system either. After all, they are innovators and eager to work on new technology. You know you could make some great gains by implementing a new system, but the thought of it is overwhelming. You might be thinking that maybe it’s best to hold off and limp by with the legacy system you’ve got for just one more year.

While this approach may be tempting, your business stability could be at risk. Doing things the way they’ve always been done drastically limits you when it comes to technology. With a stagnant mindset, you miss out on new innovations, opportunities and can lose your competitive edge. Hanging on to old technology perpetuates that mindset and the work to maintain it is often time-consuming for your IT staff, who may already be spread thin. Everyone is so busy maintaining what you have that there is no time for innovation and improvement.

Are you ready for a new mindset? Think modernly about your processes and organizations.  Start by asking yourself:

  • How do you run your business today?
  • Could you do things more efficiently?
  • What could you do if you weren’t constrained by your legacy system?

7 Signs That Your Legacy System is Past Its Prime

How do you spot problems associated with dated technology before they devolve to a crisis? Here are a few signs:

1. The system you have is more than ten years old.

Technology changes quickly, and in addition to the opportunities you miss for efficiency, your technology stack is no longer sufficient to support what your customers want to do.

2. Vendors no longer provide you with support because your technology is too old.

Tech companies move on to better, faster, newer versions and at some point stop supporting the outdated offerings.

3. Employees don’t want to touch anything because they’re afraid it will break.

It the system breaks, it might open a can of worms and create a much bigger problem to fix.

4. You have too much disparate technology, with too many things that are really far apart.

For example, say you’re using both Oracle and SQL databases. If you have just one technology, you can focus on making what you have work better.

5. You’re buying hardware from eBay.

If you turn to eBay and resale sites for replacement parts, your technology is too old. Although, you’re in good company. NASA turned to buying old computer hardware from eBay to keep their space shuttles flying . If an organization that can put people on the moon can make these mistakes – anyone can. There are lots of reasons to emulate NASA. Hanging on to old technology isn’t one of them.

6. The software isn’t compatible with other software and hardware.

The old systems don’t play well with the new systems and integrations aren’t smooth. How soon will a third party render your system obsolete?

7. Employees are unable to take vacation because your system is too old.

Only one guy in your group really knows the system well and he has the power to hold you hostage. What if he takes vacation, retires or wins the lottery and the system goes down? Who is going to fix it? If losing one or two people from your organization would put your business at risk, you need a new plan.

If you can you identify with any of those signs, chances are you should be seriously looking to upgrade to a new system with modern technology.

Do You Have a Dinosaur?

After reading the signs and evaluating your current system, do you have a dinosaur? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. A client had built their own WMS and it was incredibly time-consuming to maintain and support. They had 60 people on staff to manage this highly customized system. We helped the company replace their system with an off-the-shelf WMS and they were able to reduce the IT staff assigned to the WMS to ten people. Since the software was off-the-shelf rather than a highly customized solution, they could leverage an outside organization for support to fill in the gaps.

We can help you fill in the gaps too. Check out part two of this series, “Your Legacy System is a Dinosaur!”

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Jeremy Hudson

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Jeremy’s focus is on the products and services clients need to stay competitive. Open Sky Group’s mission is to deliver technology-enabled solutions that allow our customers to achieve more while having the flexibility to adapt to change. Jeremy lives the core values and mission by bringing the best experience possible to our clients. He is an essential member of implementation teams, working alongside clients, and encouraging them to use innovation and best practices instead of customizations for success.

Jason Yantiss

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Jason provides leadership to a variety of teams focused on implementation and integration. With 27+ years of experience holding operational and technical management roles in transportation, billing, and warehousing across a vast array of industry verticals, Jason is adept at driving multiple complex projects, understanding customer needs at all levels of the operation and providing viable solutions. Jason’s resume of 150+ implementation projects include Warehouse, Labor, Transportation, Yard Management and multiple AR/AP Freight Pay and Customer Billing systems. 

Eric McPherson

Vice President of Client Services

Mac works to oversee implementation and integration projects. A former Marine officer and military police officer, he brings over 27 years of supply chain experience, including 11 years at Blue Yonder in both delivery and service sales. Mac is a dedicated, team-oriented professional with a background in business management, professional services, customer service, and supply chain technology. His specialties include sales support, supply chain execution systems, project management, fulfillment operations, distribution operations, and GSA contracts.

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As Senior VP of Client Services, Alan oversees all consulting services and account management at Open Sky Group. Possessing over 30 years of combined industry and consulting experience, Alan leverages his unique background in IT, logistics, quality management systems, manufacturing and distribution operations, and facility and strategic account management to provide clients with creative resolutions to complex challenges. His core philosophy and passion are to deliver tangible value for and establish long-term trusted partnerships with our clients.

Mike Noble

Senior Vice President of Technology

As Senior Vice President of Technology, Mike leads Open Sky Group’s Managed Services, Software Services, Infrastructure Services, and Information Technology teams bringing 35+ years of experience in Supply Chain Execution and Information Technology. Mike and his teams ensure we maintain the highest levels of customer service in a secure and reliable environment, constantly reviewing and evaluating new technologies, their appropriateness and applicability so we can safely and securely transact our own business – and help our clients accomplish the same.

Chad Kramlich

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Joining Open Sky Group in 2015, Chad, served as Chief Revenue Officer for three years prior to his appointment to CEO in 2022. With over 25 years of experience delivering results for high-growth software and consulting organizations, Chad is leveraging his background in building efficient and effective implementation teams, establishing high-impact services operations, achieving revenue growth, and deepening executive-level client relations to help propel Open Sky Group into a very successful future.