Application Assessment – Why NOT Do It Yourself?

Why do you need outside expertise?

  • Tried-and-true approach
  • Methodology ready – no need to spend critical time developing a process and means to measure
  • Assistance from those who do rationalization full-time
  • Timely completion of scope
  • Overcome the inertia of resources who have ‘a day job’. This is NOT a part-time effort
  • Application agnostic. Your employees simply can’t be – they have too much invested in their current technologies
  • Delivery of an actionable plan – a multi-year roadmap to ‘a’ future state (no right / wrong answer)
  • NOT swayed / impacted by internal political / organizational issues
  • Processes tested successfully time and time again along with tools, templates, knowledge, and business expertise to perform a deep dive into the discovery, analysis, and development of application disposition recommendations
  • Your personnel knows what needs fixed – they fight it every day. They know what the future state should look like. They also know that there isn’t enough budget, staff, or where-with-all for change to perform a ‘big-bang’ solution
    • What they don’t know is what can realistically be completed this year, what can be budgeted for next year, and what should be planning for the following year

Internal staff is not in the best position to answer these questions – that is why they haven’t been…

  • How well do applications map to current and future business operating processes?
  • Which applications score best and worst for function and technical quality?
  • How many applications provide redundant functionality?
  • What applications are based on ‘at risk’ technology?
  • What applications cost the most to maintain? Where are the best opportunities to control cost?
  • What applications should be retired, consolidated or extended? Moved to cloud? Made mobile-ready?
  • If a given application is retired, what is the impact to other applications / data sources?
  • What would the impact to the application portfolio be by implementing the strategy?

These ‘typical situations’ are extremely difficult for internal staff to uncover / remediate:

  • A silo mentality that exists in many areas, one that inhibits collaboration across business units – a barrier to stated long term objectives
  • An abundance of custom spreadsheets and databases, some of which perform important functions
  • Help desks that have an impossible task trying to support all that’s out there
  • Functionality overlap in support of numerous processes
  • “Champion” applications that should have additional investment
  • Data integrity issues when there is no clear “master” data set

You need a project plan that will provide:

  • Deliver as much real value as quickly as possible
  • Deliver future state recommendations, based on a detailed analysis of the current state, that will be of immediate benefit
  • Minimize any disruption to the organization
  • Ensure the time line is aggressive and highly attainable
  • Make the decisions for the right reasons based on the right analysis

Application Assessment Specialist (e.g. “Apps Rats”) have seen this before and know how to address it. Your employees have not:

  • Siloed applications across business units, organizations, and processes
  • Significant risk in ability to support anticipated business growth
  • Minimal support for hundreds of different apps
  • Many applications supported by business (shadow ITs / underground apps) – some known, some not. They represent a significant portion of the total IT-spend
  • Difficulty in determining business value that IT (or a specific application) provides
  • Financials not completed at the application level resulting in weak business cases that support funding requests. How many of your requests have been declined lately?
  • Total Cost of Ownership, an important metric in applications portfolio management (APM), is not attainable
  • Software licensing / utilization, especially at the desktop, is placing the organization at risk

If your employees could have looked beneath the surface, they already would have…

  • Despite their importance, applications typically get little management attention
  • Start with the realization that existing IT applications are a major asset … and cost!
  • Applications underpin the IT services provided, therefore the starting point for any change
  • Replace guesswork with transparency to guide strategic application decisions
  • Organizations, on average, spend ~70% of their IT budget running and supporting applications. What do you spend?


In the absence of a  coherent strategy, a de facto strategy will emerge.

One based on extrapolating the current IT environment into the future


Roads? Where we are going, we need a roadmap!!!

See you in the future…

Frank Wood

Executive Transformation Strategist (aka “Apps Rat!”)


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