Think about it… Managing a business is complicated. Finance, Human Resources, Operations, Sales, Communications, and Marketing are some of the many specific departments that companies have in order to operate a business. At the end of the day, all of these departments have specific business processes that are meant to optimize how tasks are completed for the business. In today’s world, these processes and tasks are often run through software applications.
Here is a list of some common applications found in businesses today:
- Accounting software
- Contract management software
- Customer relationship management software
- Document management software
- Enterprise resource planning software
- Inventory software
- Legal matter management software
- Project management software
- Task management software
- Time tracking software
How many of these are found in your business? How many applications does your business run that weren’t mentioned in the list above? And how many vendors do you have for these applications?
Today, there is software for practically every business process. Behind them are dedicated, well-trained sales teams whose primary jobs are to present you a compelling business case regarding why you need that software. The question that this situation presents is: How much software is too much software?
According to Skyhigh Networks, organizations run an average of 545 services in the cloud. There are also many organizations that still continue to hold onto their legacy software because that software contains the history—or legacy—of the organization, which is often valuable data that is still referenced today. However, as Melanie Turek of Network World mentioned, it is becoming more difficult to find technicians with the skills (and desire) to support these legacy products.
In addition, using so many applications adds a ton of unplanned work on employees. One study conducted by HubSpot Research (2016) shows that 82% of salespeople and marketers lost up to one hour a day managing tools and 75% of marketers spend up to one hour a day analyzing data from different tools. That is more than 10% of your employees’ salaries spent on navigating through technology rather than focusing on their core business responsibilities; in this case, increasing brand awareness and revenue.
Application consolidation is a best practice every IT executive must consider to truly optimize their organization’s business performance. Siemens (2010) does an excellent job of explaining why in the following graphic, which is summarized below:
- Cost reduction
- Increase quality
- Global supply
- Secure compliance
- Increase agility
- Maximize benefit
- Simplify business
- Use innovations
Forsythe Solutions Group also discusses the benefits in application management (streamlining applications). The benefits they discuss include:
- Gaining visibility into applications across the entire technology stack
- Making an IT organization more valuable to the business
- Managing IT costs
- Taking a proactive approach to IT management.
Some of the benefits listed in the two examples above have some overlap, but these benefits are undeniable. It’s important for businesses to evaluate whether their applications are truly benefiting the organization or creating more unplanned work for their employees. In addition, executives should consider viable technology alternatives that allow them to run their entire suite of applications under one platform. There are some options to consider, such as Sirma Enterprise Platform, that can include document management, contract management, task management, team collaboration, e-mail hosting, employee time-keeping, and much more.
To learn about how application consolidation can benefit your business, contact us today.
Thanks for reading,
Shamit Patel, Sirma Enterprise Systems
An, M. 2017, February 26. Death By 1,000 Apps: Why Tech is Actually Making Us Less Efficient. Retrieved from https://research.hubspot.com/reports/tech-is-making-us-less-efficient.
Degenhardt, A. 2010. What is Application Management? Retrieved from https://www.slideshare.net/ApplicationManagement/what-is-application-management/4.
Rivard, E., McLachlan, M., and Gadient, E. 2015, July 2. The 4 Key Benefits of Application Performance Management. Retrieved from http://focus.forsythe.com/articles/427/The-4-Key-Benefits-of-Application-Performance-Management.
Turek, M. 2004, Application Consolidation: What you need to know. Retreived from http://www.networkworld.com/article/2332170/data-center/application-consolidation–what-you-need-to-know.html.