Many organizations today have legacy or proprietary solutions that they are hesitant to move away from. Though custom software can be developed and tailored to these environments, there are some challenges that the enterprise will have to face. Legacy software suites are generally outdated suites that are no longer supported by their distributor.
Data Transfer and Support
Legacy solutions often don't support the same file and data types as modern software. In order to tailor custom software to these legacy solutions, data often has to be transformed or bridged. This can introduce errors and inconsistencies from one module to another, potentially slowing down productivity. Often, software solutions need to be designed to use outdated or older methods of file management and data storage, which could reduce efficiency over the entire system.
Training and Protocols
Legacy solutions can be substantially different in nature from modern interfaces, presenting issues for employees who need to learn two types of workflow. Though a custom development team may be able to build a better interface on top of a legacy solution, it usually is just as labor intensive as replacing the legacy solution altogether. The only other option is building a new software suite that also uses outdated methods of interaction.
Authentication and Identity Systems
Modern authentication and identity systems are designed to verify a user's identity and keep that identity safe. Legacy systems often had no methods of easily controlling, modifying, or tracking user accounts, including lacking auditing features. Often a custom development team will have to create separate identities and logins for the legacy solution and the new software. This can be very confusing for employees, who will have to use separate login names and passwords for different platforms.
Incompatible Security Standards
Legacy solutions are often found to be vulnerable in terms of security. Older systems often stored data in plain text and had no encryption options; they also may not transmit data over the appropriately secured connections. Out of all of the issues with legacy solutions, security tends to be the largest. Integrating a legacy solution often means having to perform some work to ensure that the data is safe.
For the most part, most enterprises will benefit from moving away from their legacy suites, even if the cost and time appears to be prohibitive. A custom software developer (like Compusmart Solutions) can give a company more information on the design of a better system.