How SBA Set Model Expectations for Upgrading Legacy IT
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Leaving Legacy IT in the Past

In an age of shrinking budgets, staff and time, agencies need every competitive advantage they can get, and removing legacy IT systems is a great place to start.

But modernizing areas such as document and process management is easier said than done. Many agencies have invested years or even decades in their legacy technology, and they’re reluctant to let them go. Even worse, scores of governments are finding that modernization requires upgrading not just their tools, but their attitudes too. These agencies are realizing that reaping modernization’s true benefits requires upgrading both their culture and their IT.

Fortunately, going into 2020 offers agencies the opportunity to enter a new decade with flexible, innovative solutions that they’ve never had before. For instance, cloud computing can help agencies rethink both their document and process management routines entirely. Rather than merely evolving their bad habits and technologies, cloud can assist agencies with completely revolutionizing them instead.

To understand how cloud can inspire agencies to leave their outdated document and process management in the past, GovLoop spoke with Dave Jones, Vice President for Marketing at AODocs. AODocs provides cloud-based document and process management software solutions. “I think it’s the perfect time for agencies to modernize not just from a technology perspective, but also a user perspective,” Jones said.

Continuing to run legacy systems presents agencies with three challenges. First, many of these systems are unsupported and expose agencies to cybersecurity risks.

Second, older systems are harder to integrate successfully with newer ones. Third, the longer agencies use aging tools, the more dependent they are on them. “Using systems that they’ve used forever, makes people think that there are no issues, no danger associated with them,” Jones said.

As a result, many agencies don’t change their ways and subsequently fall into other traps. For example, take manual, paper-based processes. New software won’t improve processes if agencies replicate old, manual processes. “They’re taking bad systems and simply getting new versions of bad systems,” Jones said.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) cloud, however, can help agencies see tired practices in a new light. SaaS clouds deliver subscription-based software on a centrally hosted cloud. SaaS clouds such as AODocs’ can host tools that boost document collaboration and enhance mobile device access for agencies.

Cloud’s flexibility and scalability, meanwhile, means it can quickly adapt to agencies’ needs. Rather than put new paint on ancient tools, agencies can add or subtract the functions they desire as necessary. “AODocs was born in the cloud,” Jones said. “We’re bringing the best features and functions from the on-premises document management systems and deploying them in the cloud directly to agencies.”

Takeaway: The time is ripe for agencies to modernize their document and process management systems using cloud.

This article is an excerpt from GovLoop’s recent guide, “How State & Local Gov Tech Will Look in 2020 & Beyond.” Download the full guide here.

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