PERSPECTIVES

Zero-Maintenance: Containing IT Costs While Delivering Superior Business Outcomes

2021-05-27


By applying a rigorous and automated approach, IT organizations can reduce applications spending, increase repair accuracy, minimize debt across the portfolio, free up resources for more strategic business imperatives and improve yields to deliver enhanced business outcomes.

Across industries, IT budgets for “run the business” initiatives have flattened over the past few years. Yet despite having fewer dollars to spend on activities such as application maintenance and extensions, many senior leaders still expect IT to deliver outcomes that meet or exceed their strategic business objectives.

To deliver on these expectations, IT must initiate a more rigorous review of the ROI measurement process and consider embracing a managed services-based approach to managing their portfolios. This approach, in our experience, can simultaneously reduce costs and increase the value delivered to business.

We believe organizations should adopt a “zero maintenance strategy.” Zero maintenance delivers the greatest benefits when it is industrialized. This means establishing a structured, ongoing process to identify and categorize technological debt that applications incur over time — and minimizing that debt by quickly fixing defects, improving technical infrastructure, and automating as much required remediation as possible. Such an industrialized process should also identify and optimize the workflows that are most critical to the business to deliver improved outcomes.

Zero-maintenance is based on the following imperatives:

  • Reduce non-discretionary spend by eliminating the effort expended to run applications in production, while optimizing infrastructure costs by “right-sizing” application needs.
  • Optimize discretionary spend by accelerating time-to-market while, at the same time, ensuring that the technical and functional value of the application portfolio is increased.
  • Deliver business outcomes that continuously verify the relevance of installed applications and ensure they are not only fit for use but also fit for purpose.

Organizations should manage this value continuum using a debt framework in which various costs that are present in the portfolio are measured and controlled, ensuring the balance between business need and portfolio stability.

To learn more about capping application maintenance costs without impacting business value, read our paper, “Industrializing Zero Application Maintenance,” visit the Application Maintenance section of our website, or contact us.