Enterprise Software Survey Identifies Change and Upgrades as Barriers
Doug Hadden, VP Products
The Information Week 2012 Enterprise Applications Survey provides some disturbing information. “Changing, upgrading and optimizing existing applications” was found to be the biggest barrier to success and the most time consuming. The full report is well worth downloading [registration required.] There’s good information about performance management and SaaS trends. And, it’s easy to read.
Customization = $$$$
The survey concludes that “customized apps are more difficult to deal with, particularly when you’re upgrading them.” This is a particular problem in government because of the need for legal changes to enable good practices. Change is more frequent in government than the private sector. That’s a disturbing problem for government organizations that use the customization approach employed by Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) vendors. This is just more evidence of the high Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of these approaches.
Is Configuration the Answer?
The survey suggests that “configuration isn’t always the best answer. In some cases, configuration options are getting so numerous and layered that they present challenges of their own.” This is the case when enterprise software attempts to support multiple industries and when the vendor doesn’t have much experience doing configuration.
We’ve found that a parameter approach with adaptable workflow and other techniques significantly reduces this configuration burden. Especially given that the software is designed exclusively for the government domain. This approach significantly reduces the barriers associated with the top 4 barriers to success. This approach enables process change (something we call “progressive activation”)