The sudden shift in how we work has been challenging for many businesses. For some it validated their technology platforms, and for others exposed their limitations. Regardless of the outcome, it is important to take these experiences and update your technology roadmap. Here are three points to consider when updating your roadmaps.
Things will not go back to "normal. Remote work will be a capability all businesses need going forward.
Remote access and collaboration need to be a part of your technology roadmap. These capabilities also need to be integrated into existing workflows and processes so that they are a normal course of business, not a band-aid or exception to how things are normally done.
A great example of this is to check writing. It was easy for the office coordinator to print checks and then carry them down the hall for the controller to sign. Not anymore! Now you need to utilize online Bill Pay (check writing) with an approval workflow so that one person can set up all the payments and another approves.
Email is not going to cut it for office communications either. Time to move to an integrated real-time solution like Microsoft Teams. Don’t wait to "get back to the office" as that is not going to be the same as it was.
Cloud-based initiatives and platforms should be prioritized
Further investment in any on-premise software should be closely looked at. The majority of applications have an online or hosted version available. Take the savings that will likely be coming from utilities and rent to fund these initiatives.
Take an inventory of all the software in use in your organization and understand what can be moved to cloud or turned off. It might surprise you how much software is not really needed anymore. Even for legacy or custom applications there are options to move to Azure Cloud that will make sense.
Server hardware needs to be eliminated
Any on-premise server hardware needs to be virtualized and moved to Azure Cloud. The shift to work from home means that access to on-premise servers is now SLOWER than if it were hosted in Azure. The argument for local access is no more.
Got a file share? Moving into SharePoint Online is a no-brainer if you already are on Microsoft 365, and you likely are! Time to get those servers turned off.
It is important to be willing to change direction if needed, as Roadmaps are not set in stone. Next post we will discuss the sunk cost facility and why it's important not to base your technology roadmap on this.