Taos Glossary

An explanation of industry terms that is a quick read, and knowledge base.

Application Modernization

What is Application Modernization?

Application modernization is the process of porting, converting, or otherwise rewriting an existing application, transforming it to take advantage of new technologies and functionality that better align with modern business opportunities. 

Often driven by the business need to create more value from an existing solution, application modernization is used to bring a legacy application to modern times, transforming it to utilize modern application programming languages, application programming interfaces, networking protocols, and software libraries. Application modernization may also be with a cloud migration program, where the application is converted—sometimes even rewritten—to take advantage of modern architectures, infrastructure, and hardware platforms. 

How does Application Modernization work?

An application modernization program will include one or more of the following: rearchitecting, rebuilding, recoding, refactoring, rehosting, and re-platforming. Sometimes, if the technologies don’t lend themselves to an easy transition, retirement and replacement of the legacy system may be the best path forward. 

An application modernization program is often aligned with a shift in the software delivery model with a move from a monolithic waterfall lifecycle to a modern, dynamic DevOps delivery model. The program also typically coincides with a migration to the cloud which brings the application to an environment where it can take full advantage of the many benefits that come with cloud computing: scalability, agility, flexibility, elasticity, security, and resiliency. 

A well-planned application modernization program will find the best path forward that not only aligns it to today’s business objectives but also leads the business to identify and meet its future goals. 

Why is Application Modernization important? 

In many cases, existing applications are developed in a way that meets their original requirements but, over time, can begin to prevent them from meeting new and taxing demands from the market, the business, and the end-users. The goal of an application modernization program should be to find a path forward for the legacy application such that it continues to provide value to the business. 

The real driver for the start of the program usually happens when a legacy application reaches a point where missing features and/or operating disruptions negatively impact the end-user experience to a point where they no longer want to use the application. To address this, application modernization programs aim to align and enhance the legacy application to business need while making it run more efficiently and ensuring it has operating continuity with minimal disruption by: 

  • Streamlining systems, processes, and workflows to better meet the operational requirements of the business and its end-users 
  • Modernizing aging infrastructure for better performance and resiliency 
  • Capitalizing on modern software libraries and services to improve the customer experience 
  • Bring solutions to market faster 

Benefits of Application Modernization

Application modernization can touch several parts of the business from operations to customer experience. These are a few of the benefits that an organization might experience as they embark on their application modernization journey: 

    • Unlock business value that is otherwise impossible to reach with the legacy application 
    • Improve application performance and efficiency 
    • Provide a better customer experience for the end-users 
    • Introduce improved reliability and resiliency by isolating services and making bug fixes less impactful from a regression testing perspective 
    • Make the delivery process more agile by pairing the application modernization process with the adoption of the DevOps software delivery model

Common use cases for Application Modernization

There are countless examples where application modernization can be applied. Here are a few examples to help illustrate what’s possible: 

    • Enable mobile: An existing mainframe or another legacy on-premises application may be lacking the ability to run on a mobile phone or tablet. It might be time to give the end-users the ability to access the application’s capabilities from their mobile device of choice. 
    • Add security: A legacy application may not have strong authentication and access control capabilities. If the business is planning to move into a more regulated or otherwise security-savvy market, it might be a good time to refactor the application to leverage one or more libraries that support best practices for identity management and multi-factor authentication. 
    • Streamline delivery: Move away from a monolithic architecture where everything is built and deployed as a single entity. Use this opportunity to move toward a more modular approach that utilizes a microservice model where each component can be built and deployed individually.  

Does Taos help with Application Modernization?  

Yes! Taos can help accelerate your business speed to innovation by leveraging DevOps and SRE Principles. Partner with Taos to enable your organization to execute faster deployment and scaled application performance. 

With a technology agnostic, modernization strategy, top technical talent, and a model that keeps us agile in the face of rapidly changing technology, Taos can help modernize your business and your applications regardless of platform. 

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