Outdated Software – Is It Dragging You Down?

Is your software in need of modernization?

Retro is back in. Polaroid cameras have become all the rage, and records are flying off the shelves as hipsters scour antique shops for vintage record players in a quest to make old things new. Even Atari has recently released a flashback video game console loaded with such classics as Centipede, Space Invaders and Pitfall in all their pixelated glory. While we don’t mind embracing a bit of retro fun now and then, when it comes to running your business, your software should be anything but vintage.

Sometimes it seems like technology changes overnight, and it’s hard to keep up with the latest and greatest, especially on a budget. But that doesn’t mean you should cling to a software solution just because it “kinda still works” or “we’ve just always used this program.” Because your legacy system may actually be hurting your business more than it’s helping.

Here are some of the top ways outdated software may be hurting your business:

Wasting Valuable Time:
Is your current system cumbersome? Does it take forever to perform a simple task, or crash on a regular basis? Are your employees resorting to paper solutions or bypassing the system all together? It’s time to consider updating your software.

If you don’t think legacy software is such a big deal, consider this: your software solution makes employees wait 3 minutes to run a report or save a file. If you have 20 employees waiting 3 minutes for a process to run, and they do this 4 times a day, that’s 240 minutes (4 hours!) spent waiting on your software every day. What’s more, that’s over 43 wasted workdays every year – just waiting for your system to function properly.

Extensive Training Required:
Computer skills are expected in the modern workforce. Most people have at least rudimentary computing capabilities (thanks in large part to social media). But is your system so outdated that it requires extensive training to learn how to use it? If a new employee has to use keyboard shortcuts or sift through an interface that is not intuitive to modern users, it’s not doing your business any favors. In fact, it could be driving people away. This makes onboarding new employees (and losing existing employees) an expensive undertaking for your business.

It Creates More Problems Than It Solves:
Being able to adapt your business processes to the current market is vital to ensuring your business growth, but your software solution may be keeping you from doing just that. If your employees have to find complex work-arounds to make your new process work with your existing software, you are not only wasting valuable time, but your business is losing money. Inaccurate reports abound, data is missing for key metrics, you target the wrong market because you have no way to track results in real time. Your software solution should work with you, not against you. But outdated, unsupported software usually creates more problems for your company than it solves.

Your System is Device Dependent:
Are your employees tied to the machines at their desks to get work done? Can they access your software in the field or on the go as needed? Do they have to use paper and pen on-site, and then transfer the data to a computer when they get back in the office? If your software solution requires your employees to use a specific device (especially one running an old operating system) your software is not retro, it’s outdated. 

It Requires Excessive Hardware:
Speaking of device dependent solutions, most outdated systems require excessive hardware to keep running. Rather than switching to a reliable cloud-based solution that is available anywhere, outdated software usually requires companies to have in-house server environments and complex applications to keep running. And the cost of housing, updating and maintaining old servers can quickly become unreasonable in light of modern hosting solutions.

It may seem like you’re saving money by sticking with a legacy software solution, but when you sit down and count the cost in time, energy and resources wasted, and you consider the opportunities you may be missing because of this, it makes sense to invest in your company’s future by upgrading the software that runs your business.

So is your business being held hostage by outdated software?  If you are struggling with any of the challenges of “retro” technology, we’re here to help. We can design and develop a software solution that actually works for your company instead of against it. For more information, visit our website or feel free to give us a call at 810-695-0001.