Infosys Modernization Radar 2022: Half of Enterprise Legacy Applications to be Modernized in the Next Two Years

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The race to modernize continues, and companies already see the finish line, according to new research from the Infosys Knowledge Institute, the thought leadership and research arm of Infosys. The study reveals that 50 percent of the global legacy application landscape is expected to modernize in the next two years, with 70-90 percent modernizing in the next five years.

Infosys Modernization Radar 2022 found that application modernization leads to increased benefits from cloud, enterprise data, and exponential technologies like analytics, APIs, AI and microservices. Modernization also improves scalability and creates a digital backbone. The research underscores that modernization reduces operational expenditures, increases revenues, and provides a better customer experience.

The research identified four swift and effective modernization approaches:

1. The right modernization strategy:

Holistic, automated, and aligned Our research found that 88 percent of systems are legacy; of those, 45 percent are legacy mainframe. More than half (52 percent) are core to the business, and the rest are supporting applications – all need to avoid the risk of disruption. Many of the legacy systems lack adequate support, making them vulnerable and presenting security risks. Companies should adopt a holistic view of the enterprise estate, increase automation, and align business and IT on modernization decisions.

2. Multiple talent pools reduce risk

Fifty-one percent of respondents cited the lack of skills and talent as a bigger pain point than the risk of disruption (27 percent) and modernization costs (24 percent). Companies need to upskill their employee base and acquire niche skills such as reengineering, database modernization, and rules externalization. The research recommends companies invest in their workforce, build communities of practice for modernization, and tap the gig economy to harness talent as a modernization tool.

3. Modernization investment should be more strategic than discretionary

Although companies on average invest a full 65 percent of discretionary budget on modernization projects, large companies tend to budget more strategically for modernization. These firms develop a clear modernization roadmap and are more likely to go all-in on big modernization projects. Modernization is now on the executive agenda, and it should become a crucial component of enterprise technology planning.

4. Phased approach and coexistent methodologies are less disruptive than a big-bang approach

A systematic phased and coexistent approaches to modernization cause the fewest disruptions. When legacy and modernized applications coexist with two-way data syncing, this coexistence limits end-user disruptions. According to the research, 51 percent of respondents who extensively use a big-bang approach experience more frequent and severe disruption. However, severe disruption levels and frequency for a phased and coexistent methods were far lower.