The Problem with Legacy Systems
Many organizations struggle with replacing outdated software and legacy systems that no longer function efficiently. Even highly structured organizations such as NASA and the Federal Government experience this. The main struggle organizations face is the difficulty in managing legacy systems, and integrating them with newer software. Legacy systems are computer programs that were created before wide-scale internet use and are now outdated. They typically remain in place because of vendor lock-in, the expense to replace them, or because of difficulty migrating data.
The difficulty in integrating these systems is two-fold. First, there’s a decreasing number of people who have knowledge of these legacy systems. IT professionals that understand the coding of these systems are retiring. Second, legacy systems typically cannot work with new software due to differences in functionality. For example, mobile features didn’t even exist when these systems were created and are impossible to implement.
Exchanging outdated legacy workforce management systems for modern solutions can be labor-intensive and requires new investment in IT. While the exchange process can be timely and costly, keeping legacy systems around can cost you even more. Most often, it is worth the time and investment to exchange systems.
Here are two examples of how legacy systems can impact an organization, and the improvements that come with exchanging them.
Legacy systems are often more likely to crash. This is usually because they are phasing out, and receive very few if any, performance updates. Plus, with only a few people who understand how to troubleshoot these systems, a crash can mean a big interruption in business operations. At North Shore Community Action Programs in Massachusetts, the crash of their legacy workforce management software prompted the replacement and upgrade to an Advanced Workforce Management Solution. Their old system was cumbersome to operate, with data existing in multiple locations, and caused delays in payroll and billing by multiple days. With their new system, they reduced their payroll processing time by 75% and can receive payment from accounts receivable up to a month sooner than before.
At Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, they were using a custom legacy workforce management system, operating on a DOS file system. A custom legacy system like theirs served well for many years. However, it was now extremely outdated and didn’t completely serve their needs. Simple tasks like printing a schedule or switching screens proved time-consuming and required workarounds.
With a new scheduling and time & attendance system, they are now able to perform workforce management tasks in less than half the time. Their new system also ensures that scheduling follows union rules such as seniority. Through the web portal, they can easily see employee availability and shifts in a calendar view. This improved staff morale, and they were able to save lots of paper too!
If you would like to upgrade your workforce management platform, book a free consultation with our Solutions Advisors to see how Celayix can help.