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Software Intelligence Report: Legacy and Agile Threaten Digital Transformation Success

Agile

New research from CAST shows that legacy prevails; and Agile is not the silver bullet it was promised to be.

CAST, the leader in Software Intelligence, has recently announced new research evaluating the impact of application age on software performance and business outcomes. The Software Intelligence Report on Application Age identifies two primary outcomes of old vs. new software that’s still in use today:

Older applications are far more likely to impact service continuity in the event of a production failure. Over 75% of applications from the 1980’s have a critical impact on business operations if they go down, compared to just under 50% of those written in this decade.

The shift toward Agile development teams might not be helping organizations modernize as quickly as the industry anticipated. According to the report, Software Agility is the only health factor that does not show a continuous improvement trend over time. In fact, applications released over the past 10 years score lower than applications released in the 1980s.

“Enterprise applications are often laden with software risk, as different pieces of functionality have been tacked-on over time. Without adequate Software Intelligence, it is very difficult for executives to get an accurate assessment of resilience and agility risk,” said Michael Muller, Product Owner for CAST Highlight and co-author of the report. “Smaller development teams and faster release cycles improve immediate outcomes for end-users, but without active portfolio-level management Agile teams can turn the codebase into a legacy headache for the next CIO.”

“IT still struggles to transform an aging, monolithic app-centric environment into a nimble, outcome-driven engine needed to drive digital business,” said Dan Hebda, Chief Strategy Officer at MEGA, who also contributed to the report. “In MEGA’s experience, those most successful in modernizing their infrastructure start with IT portfolio management to establish a baseline of Software Intelligence. This includes aligning resources to business outcomes, reducing infrastructure complexity, understanding technical debt and opening the road to accelerated innovation and growth.”

The Software Intelligence Report on Application Age looks at 2,067 applications, representing 733 million lines of code from 14 different technologies that are developed and maintained by more than 12,000 people across multiple verticals. To conduct the analysis, these applications were anonymized and scanned by CAST Highlight, the company’s SaaS-based application portfolio analysis solution.

To get your complimentary copy of the report, you can download it here.

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