When looking at updating or implementing new technologies, one of the biggest concerns we often hear from our clients is how to justify the costs. The question then becomes, what is the cost of outdated technology? What is the incentive to spend that much money? In today’s blog post, we are going to go through some of the implications of not keeping your technology up-to-date.
It’s a fact. Consumers are more tech savvy than ever before, and they expect businesses to be able to keep up with modern standards. In fact, a study published by Microsoft brought light on the reputation-related cost of outdated technology and the implications it can have on recurring or potential customers. Consider these facts:
- More than 90% of consumers said they would consider taking their business elsewhere rather than work with a company that uses outdated technology
- Nearly 25% of consumers think that a business is not professional and lacks credibility if it uses a free email service
- 61% of consumers think a company is outdated if they are using an operating system that is more than 4 years old.
Knowing all of these facts, it becomes clear that consumers are looking for modern technology as a sign of a brand they can trust.
Crashes and System Downtime
System downtime is categorically unavoidable. In fact, Dunn & Bradstreet reports that 49% of Fortune 500 companies experience at least 1.6 hours of downtime per week. Looking at those numbers it is clear that all you can do is try to minimize your downtime.
Whether you are talking about software or hardware, older systems have increased failure rates. This is a huge factor in the high cost of outdated technology in the workplace. Studies show that PCs more than 4 years old average 21 hours of downtime.
From the hardware perspective, the moving components of older hardware systems make them a likely point of failure. Older hardware didn’t have the benefit of Solid State Drives. Failed hard drives usually result in severe data loss that can cripple your organization.
Aside from actual hardware malfunctions, bit rot and software rot are leading contributors to complications with older technology systems.
Technology is evolving exponentially. As new technologies emerge they are continuing to provide an increase in performance. In almost all cases, this makes them significantly cheaper to operate in the long run.
For one thing, it takes a lot more power to run old systems, driving the power costs way up. New systems can perform the same amount and type of work for a fraction of the power usage.
As technology systems become outdated, and start to have more problems, the cost of maintaining them skyrockets. The cost of outdated technology maintenance can very quickly become a burden to a company trying to keep budgets under control.
Consider this, research shows:
- Cost to support standard PC running Windows XP per year – $780
- Cost to support standard PC running Windows 8 per year – $168
- Cost to support Windows Server 2003 per year – $200,000
As you can see, these costs really add up.
The fact that decreased security is an inevitable cost of outdated technology should realistically be a shock to no one. Good security systems might slow down an attack, but with enough time any system can be broken. And, unfortunately, the complexity involved with modern software means that security flaws are unavoidable.
Companies combat this problem by constantly releasing security updates for their at-risk software. Once a system is no longer supported, however, you are on your own. No more patches from the developer will be coming your way to help keep your system safe. A good example of this is when Microsoft Announced End-of-Life for Windows Server 2003, a deadline that is only a few weeks away. The longer you stay on that system, the longer you are leaving yourself wide open to an attack.
Fees and penalties that could occur as a result of a massive data breach are just another factor in the cost of outdated technology. For example, when Target experienced a data breach during the 2013 holiday season, they ended up having to pay out huge amounts of damages with individual victims being able to receive up to $10,000
Regulatory Compliance Risks
When faced with stringent regulatory compliance requirements, the cost of outdated technology can have serious repercussions on your ability to operate as a company. Most regulatory compliance standards, such as HIPAA, PCI, SOX, and others, require that any technology operating within your environment be supported. Penalties for breaking these guidelines vary depending on a number of factors.
For example, the latest PCI standard requires upgrades to al TSL standards. The guidelines even go so far as to name Windows XP and older versions of Internet Explorer as risks. If you continue to run these systems, you can lose your ability to process credit card information. You may also be faced with large fines and litigation as a result of non-compliance.
If you work in the healthcare industry with patient information, you must comply with HIPAA regulations. HIPAA fines have been known to reach $1.5 million per year per incident.
One thing is for sure, if you are subjected to any regulatory compliance, the cost of outdated technology could far exceed the cost of replacing a technology system.
Limited IT Flexibility
Older technology doesn’t have the ability to function and adapt in the same way that new technologies can. This limits the level at which your company can be flexible in order to achieve new functionality. Certain things like collaboration, data analysis, and communication are all standard expectations of new systems. Additionally, older systems are often not built to provide for scalability. This dramatically limits the performance that even an optimized older IT system can provide should your business requirements change. Yet, the lack of this functionality is a cost of outdated technology.
Are You Using Outdated Technology? Orion Can Help!
- IT Assessment – Let us come in and help you determine if our outdated technology is working for you.
- Application & Cloud Migration – If you decide that it is time for a new system, our experts can handle the migration for you, leaving you to focus on your core business objectives.
- Application Support & Maintenance – Our team can even continue to monitor and maintain your solution to make sure that you are staying up-to-date. Our help desk services strive to make sure that your technology is operable for as long as possible.
Don’t wait until something goes wrong to take a critical look at your outdated technology. Contact us Today!