The Six Things You Need for Successful Application Modernization

Sep 14, 2021 |
Joel Fernandes

Product Marketing Manager, Cloud

In this blog post, we will discuss the six things that will enable you to kick-start your application modernization initiatives.

In today’s fast-paced digital economy, software applications are at the core of delivering exceptional business growth and profits. The pandemic has also accelerated the pace toward digital transformation. Organizations are taking measures to drive exceptional customer experiences by focusing on their application stack. 

Cloud application development and adoption are witnessing rapid growth globally. According to IDC, 500 million digital applications and services will be developed using cloud-native approaches by 2023. The public cloud infrastructure market is taking off at exponential speed with established players such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud and new entrant, Alibaba. The Forrester Cloud Computing 2021 Predictions report states that the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35% to $120 billion in 2021.

The Flexera 2021 cloud report states that 92% of organizations have adopted a multicloud strategy and currently use an average of 2.6 public and 2.7 private clouds.

Cloud applications drive enterprises to digitally transform business operations, enable higher operational efficiencies, automate business processes, and scale and accelerate innovation at lower costs. But time is of the essence if enterprises want to stay competitive and innovative. Up to 80% of annual IT budgets is spent on maintaining legacy or outdated applications. Enterprises cannot deliver results with neither legacy on-premises applications nor siloed applications. Organizations need to stay agile, and this agility can be gained with an application modernization strategy in place.

Accelerating Digital Transformation with Application Modernization

Application modernization is the holy grail for driving your digital transformation initiatives. Enterprises must ensure they have the right technology arsenal when sketching the blueprint for their application modernization strategy.

Organizations stand to gain three core business benefits with the right set of application modernization solutions in place:

  1. Agility to drive competitive advantage: Assemble and connect applications with unprecedented speed.
  2. Insight and situational awareness: Surface business-critical events in real time for decision-making and visibility into business operations.
  3. Reduced costs and improved efficiency: Streamline processes and reduce manual work and errors.

Unfortunately, 74%1 of organizations fail to complete application modernization projects. Primarily, this failure is due to complex tools and technologies used by organizations to modernize their application stack. Organizations realize the tools have hidden complexity, dependencies and hard coding of legacy applications, not to mention slow migration speed.

Lack of simple tools leads to end-user frustration. Harvard Business Review survey states that 78%2 of end users seek solutions that are easy, reliable and simple to use. 60% organizations also stated they look for a single integrated and extensible application modernization platform.

With that in mind, let’s discuss the six critical things that will enable organizations to successfully drive their application modernization initiatives.

6 Things Organizations Must Use for Modernizing Applications

Download and share this Application Modernization Infographic.

1.  APIs: APIs are transforming the way organizations manage business processes and application integrations in a hybrid environment. APIs help organizations connect to a wide range of applications (on-premises or cloud), orchestrate real-time data or services from cloud applications and business processes, and integrate with other APIs in real-time with zero coding effort.

According to Informatica’s application modernization 2021 survey, 70% of organizations say APIs will help them in their application modernization journey. Organizations can accelerate their digital transformation initiatives by using APIs to unlock data from legacy applications and use it for the consumption of cloud services.

With APIs, organizations can deliver better customer experiences by transforming all the internal and external business processes. If your organization wants to innovate and develop applications rapidly, then you should look toward building a composable application stack by leveraging the API ecosystem. Application composability can be defined in layperson’s terms as moving away from large applications to modular business services that can be easily integrated and consumed across an organization’s application stack.

2.  Enterprise iPaaS: According to Informatica’s application modernization 2021 survey, 50% of organizations use an integration platform as a service (iPaaS) to integrate and modernize their applications. A typical organization uses multiple applications (cloud and on-premises); iPaaS allows applications to communicate and automate the exchange of data in real time or batch mode. An iPaaS solution reduces integration costs and complexity that traditional enterprise middleware solutions cannot provide.

iPaaS adoption is seeing tremendous growth driven by digital transformation initiatives. Also, organizations have adopted multiple cloud applications to save money and drive business operations efficiently through application integration and business process automation.

iPaaS can drive application modernization strategies with a unified centralized console that controls, orchestrates and automates data flows from multiple applications, systems and platforms without manual intervention. iPaaS automatically takes care of mapping, transforming data, managing APIs, workflows, business process automation, etc.

3.  Cloud data lakes: A cloud data lake fosters application modernization by enabling organizations to centrally store, process and analyse large amounts of structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data from applications, systems and devices (CRM, ERP, social media, IoT devices, etc). Cloud data lakes can ingest any data that comes from cloud and on-premises application sources, at any latency.

According to IDC, 163 zettabytes of digital data will be created, consumed, and stored by 2025. Organizations must move from their traditionally implemented on-premises data lakes and harness the business value delivered by investing in a cloud data lake to handle zettabytes of application data securely and cost-effectively.

With a cloud data lake, your organization can focus on driving the business more effectively rather than focusing on maintaining on-premises data lake infrastructure.

4.  Microservices: O’Reilly’s Microservices adoption report finds that 92% of organizations experience success with microservices. Microservices architecture is used widely to fulfil digital transformation initiatives. It helps organizations to create applications as loosely coupled services that are developed, deployed and scaled as an independent entity.

Your organization can use microservices to modernize your legacy application stack by breaking down a big application or legacy application into smaller independent applications, which can be easily connected with other applications through APIs, enabling seamless digital transformation. Organizations can stay agile and gain a  competitive advantage by implementing microservices to modernize their  application stack.

5.  AI and machine learning: Organizations can accelerate their digital transformation initiatives by modernizing their legacy applications and business processes at a faster pace by adopting AI and machine learning strategies. AI and machine learning helps cut down application modernization costs and saves deployment time by automating resource-intensive modernization tasks. It also helps developers make quicker decisions to speed modernization with the AI/ML-powered recommendations to determine and orchestrate the best path.

6. Containers: Organizations are modernizing their application stack by moving their critical applications to the cloud using containers. Containers are gaining popularity in the application modernization arena, as they enable organizations to get any application to function seamlessly when moved from one environment to another. 

Forrester states that prior to the pandemic, about 20% of developers regularly used containers to build new applications and modernize legacy applications. Forrester now predicts that 30% of developers will use containers regularly by the end of 2021.

Kick-Start Your Application Modernization Initiatives Today

Start your application modernization journey today – download the ebook, Modernize Your Legacy Applications in the Cloud.

 

Sources:

1.   Advanced Global Research, May 28, 2020

2.  Harvard Business Review Services Survey, 2019