I regularly talk to businesses that have technical problems due to out-of-support devices, unresolved data wiring and other deferred maintenance issues. The “technical deficit” they have accrued over years of inattention can be formidable.
Sub-optimal servers, old computers and legacy applications are a prime cause of this deficit. For example, employees earning $25 an hour that lose 20 minutes a day to slowness can cost a business $2,000 per person each year. The cost of “band-aid” style fixes leading to downtime and damage due to a security breach can run into the tens of thousands of dollars per year. When technical deficits stretch to business continuity issues due to poor data back-up practices or exposure to ransomware, the life of the company may be in jeopardy.
The best way to reduce this deficit is similar to handling high credit card debt….pay off the more expensive debt first and work your way out of the hole as quickly as possible. After years of postponed expenditures, the process and cost of these changes can seem daunting. Success begins with a detailed assessment of your posture and prioritized strategy before making future buying decisions. By bringing in a third party to perform a deep-dive assessment–rather than using a free or low cost cursory audit– businesses will receive the information needed to create an informed plan.
One powerful option employed to reduce capital expenditures is to move selected servers and applications to the Cloud. This immediately turns capital costs into operational expenses. Cloud technology is driving down costs while dramatically improving quality and security making this option a key part of the successful formula to eliminate technical debt.
The most effective way to remediate a network with a deep technical deficit is through thoughtful consolidation, selective replacement and alternative technologies. A well-developed assessment will reveal the most important problems and provide a roadmap for a solution. Not all fixes are equal, so it is important to choose a path that makes not only financial sense but leads to a solution that is also operationally viable.