How to Evaluate Your Portfolio for Application Modernization

Discover the key steps to effectively evaluate and identify upgrade opportunities in your app portfolio for application modernization services.

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In the digital and technological world, it’s only a matter of time when apps and operating systems need updating. That’s especially true if your company is considering moving to—or has moved—the cloud.

In fact, when it comes to your applications, there’s a formal process called modernization readiness

Gartner, the worldwide technological consultant, defines the application modernization process as migrating legacy to new applications or platforms, including integrating new functionality to provide the latest functions to the business.  

How to Evaluate Your Legacy System for Application Modernization

Gartner states that you can use six main drivers to evaluate your legacy system, three coming from a business perspective and three from IT:

Business perspective:  fit, value, and agility 

If your legacy application doesn’t meet digital business requirements, it needs to be modernized to fit properly to provide greater business value.

IT perspective: cost, complexity, and risk.

If the total cost of ownership is too high, the complexity too complex, or if security, compliance, support, or scalability are being compromised, it’s time to modernize.

The Rs of Application Modernization

There are several strategies for updating and enhancing your digital infrastructure. These methods are categorized based on their implementation complexity, balancing risk and impact on your existing systems.

The strategies range from straightforward adjustments that minimize disruption to more comprehensive overhauls that, while potentially introducing greater risk, offer significant improvements in functionality and performance:

  • Rehost
  • Re-platform
  • Refactor
  • Rearchitect
  • Rebuild
  • Replace

Each approach offers unique benefits and considerations for your business. Dive deeper into these strategies and learn how to choose the best path for your application's modernization journey on our blog The Rs of Application Modernization: 8 Proven Strategies for Success.

The AWS Application Modernization Readiness Assessment

Before you begin modernizing, you need to do a detailed audit of your current platform. Amazon Web Services (AWS) recommends an assessment to evaluate your organization’s application portfolio. 

The goal? To determine the business, functional, technical, and financial impact of your applications portfolio. And inform you as to how well your company can support the future state architecture of your applications after modernization. 

An AWS readiness assessment spreads four tasks over two weeks:

1. Schedule the readiness assessment meeting and require attendance

Suggested attendees include CEO, CTO, CIO, managing director, business unit owners, IT finance, and security, network, application development, infrastructure, and operations leaders. 

2. Conduct interviews with key stakeholders or personas for each application suite.

To help define your modernization strategy:

  • Identify a prioritized short list of critical business outcomes that could be delivered as part of your modernization initiative.
  • Capture current technical capabilities, architectures, and skill sets in relation to the identified business outcomes.
  • Identify key stakeholders (e.g., a cloud leadership team, cloud business office, and cloud platform engineering team) to participate in critical operating model mechanisms.

3. Gather and analyze information, document observations, and determine next steps.

This can be done through five lenses: strategic or business fit, functional adequacy, technical adequacy, financial fit, and digital readiness.

4. Schedule and conduct a debrief meeting.

Validate findings to build a roadmap that outlines the business plans discussed, risk factors identified, and paths for each application.

3 Application Modernization Assessment Outcomes

Following the AWS readiness assessment, you should expect three outcomes from a modernization readiness review:

  1. A roadmap for modernizing core business applications, including capture of business benefits, risk factors, and dependencies.
  2. An application modernization blueprint to specify the technical and functional architecture for the target state of a modernized application, for one or two applications. This blueprint includes a proof of concept for delivering a minimum viable product (MVP).
  3. An action plan to resolve the identified gaps, so your organization can modernize at scale without having to pause to solve foundational issues.

How StratusGrid Can Help With Your Application Modernization Process

As an AWS-certified partner, StratusGrid has more than 10 years of experience modernizing applications to be cloud-native. Our engineers have developed a proven four-step playbook consisting of:

Alignment and analysis

We identify your organization’s goals, the best ways to measure results, and a baseline to refer to before working on your AWS environment.

Planning

We build a detailed and measurable action plan—as well as perform a risk assessment and identify migrations—to make improvements and ensure it aligns with your company goals. 

Testing and execution

We test our assumptions and do pilots to help de-risk the project. Working alongside your team, we execute the plan while monitoring process changes as needed.

Reviewing results

We complete a closing presentation to your main stakeholders so you understand and can measure the impact of our work together.

5 Benefits of AWS Cloud Modernization with StratusGrid

Among the many ways your company will benefit, here are five:

1. Delight your customers

AWS modernization helps improve your user experience by making your applications faster, more reliable, and more scalable. All of which is essential to remain competitive and meet the growing expectations of your customers.

2. Improve your security

By modernizing your environments, you can centralize your security operations, gain real-time visibility into your security posture, and respond to threats quickly and efficiently.

3. Shorten your deployment times

Innovate with faster iteration and tighter feedback loops by automating testing and deployment.

4. Reduce work in progress

Reduce the amount of manual work required to manage infrastructure and applications, so your team can focus on more strategic initiatives.

5. Achieve cost efficiencies

AWS cloud modernization helps you choose the pricing option that best meets your needs. Only pay for the tools you need and allocate resources strategically to support your business goals.

Ready to Elevate Your Applications? Let's Talk Modernization

Embark on your application modernization journey with confidence and the expertise of StratusGrid by your side. As your trusted AWS-certified partner, we're committed to transforming your applications to be cloud-native, ensuring they're not just up-to-date but ahead of the curve. 

Contact StratusGrid today for expert AWS modernization services

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