How Complex IT Breeds Chaos and Cost

November 14, 2018

Non-standardized hardware, servers, and storage. Outdated legacy applications with system redundancies and data disparities. These are just a few examples of the layers of unhealthy complexity that plague a business’ IT, resulting in multiplicative integration projects, upgrades and maintenance, disruptions in efficiency and productivity, lowered IT team morale, and unavoidable expense. Moreover, businesses will lose faith in IT if all of IT’s time is spent shepherding complexity, and may even go outside of IT for technology solutions, which further adds to the already existing complexity.

To further illustrate the tumult adverse complexity brings, HighPoint observed a Fortune 500 company that had a legacy supply chain system only two people in the entire organization understood and were capable of maintaining. Both were older employees, and had both retired or left the company, the departure would have created significant business disruption with substantial financial consequences.

Here are a handful of direct IT and business implications resulting from complexity.

Recognize any in your organization?

  • Multiplicative systems integration: increased spend and time with each new software implementation, upgrade, or enhancement; expanded server space; problematic cloud migrations
  • Multiplicative adaptations: increased spend and time for new compliance and security requirements
  • Non-compliant, outdated systems: present high regulatory, data privacy, and business liability and risk along with barriers to IT innovations (e.g. AI and Robotic Process Automation) due to incompatibility
  • Redundant and conflicting data sources: send finance and analytics organizations into a tailspin of reconciliation to keep up with leadership demands and sidestep frustrations
  • Manual inputs; multi-step business processes: relying on people for data entry, translation, and manual touchpoints results in inefficiency, inaccuracy, and increased spend

So, what does simplified IT look like anyway?

It’s pretty straightforward: standardized hardware and consistent, non-redundant enterprise architecture in the application layer with end-to-end core process applications. The result is less systems integration time between applications, less varied hardware management, lower risk and overall vulnerability, and budget reallocation to enabling innovation (and efficiencies), rather than keep-the-lights-on spend.

Interested in more insights about managing IT complexity? Read our recent blog on Inheriting a Complex IT Structure.

Transform technology into a powerful solution.

HighPoint’s IT Strategy leaders have worked in both the boardroom and the server room, and use their expertise to ensure our solutions are balanced, commonsense, and navigate emerging obstacles. If your company needs an effective IT Strategy solution, our tech-savvy team will design one that drives your overall business strategy. Contact HighPoint to start the conversation.