Keeping up With Changes: 4 Tips for Replacing Old Software Systems in Your Business


Software systems can start to feel like haunted houses full of strange annexes and dusty, neglected areas. When your software system is slow and when updates continue to drag on its already compromised memory, then it’s time for an upgrade. Here are four tips for replacing old software systems without disturbing any ghosts.

Establish a Hybrid Plan

You probably know that a migration plan is necessary when moving from one system to a new system. In fact, your new software provider may even supply you with checklists and other preparations tools and tips. One thing to remember is that migrations can take a long time. In the interim you and your team will operate using a mix of both systems. This means that information can be redundant and misplaced. Establishing a plan for the confusing interim period will keep everyone on the same page, or at least reduce anxiety.

In hybrid environments, entity extraction is an incredibly useful feature because it helps veteran employees locate files within a new platform’s ecosystem. By parsing through various text chunks, entity extractors are able to locate files, documents and other important pieces of “lost” information and return it to its proper location.

Create a Hybrid Transition Team

As you move from one system to a vendor’s new one, it is helpful to include veteran staff on the transition team. In-house experts provide valuable information to the vendor and ensure that new systems are effectively replacing old processes.

Appoint a Documentarian

Assign one or two individuals the responsibility of tracking and documenting the entire transfer process. Which files were moved and where were they moved? When? By whom? When was the phase completed? Such information is vital should data become lost, compromised or if the vendor has not upheld their end of the agreement.

Review Software Compliance Prior to Switch

Even when moved offline, the data migration process might not meet your industry’s regulatory requirements. If your old system is meeting requirements, ensure the new system is compatible so that end-to-end data exchange is secure. If the systems are not compatible, then data might be exposed during certain stages of the transition. Ask your vendor and your in-house experts to outline data transfer security for every step in the process.

Replacing a software system is inevitable. Switching to a new system can be daunting. However, starting the process as soon as possible increases revenue and productivity.