Plan for Application Consolidation

Choose the right consolidation candidates to improve productivity and reduce operational inefficiency.


Your Challenge

  • Many consolidation projects are poorly planned, costly, and time consuming. They result in angry executives, unhappy users, and put IT in the hot seat. Systems remain in place to handle custom functionality that wasn’t considered, business units refuse to adopt the changes, or the new system won’t meet future business objectives.
  • The move to a consolidated application solution has three challenges: how to identify and select the consolidation candidates, how to present the selected candidates for recommendation, and how to deal with pushback from those who will have to change how they do their work (both IT and users).
  • IT must develop application consolidation plans that not only provide real net value to IT but also minimize potential disruption to the organization.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Using application consolidation to eliminate redundancies has long been a favorite target of IT leaders because it demonstrably reduces IT costs. Many organizations fail to plan the consolidation strategy and wind up investing in failed projects.
  • Application consolidation is not just pairing up applications that seem similar. Taking stock of the application portfolio, and analyzing and filtering applications for key criteria are the secret to identifying the best fit consolidation candidates.
  • The application assessment process is a project that requires collaboration between IT and the business. Investment in this process avoids costly expenditures on large, ill-fated consolidation projects.
  • This solution set will help IT leaders identify areas where consolidation will provide economic value, enhance organizational efficiency, and increase organizational capability.

Impact and Result

  • Initial planning and assessment is a mandatory activity to avoid sinking funds in non-starter application consolidation projects.
  • This solution set provides you with the tools and advice you need to plan and recommend application consolidation projects that will simplify business processes, reduce IT costs, and streamline the application portfolio.

Contributors

The following clients provided interviews, insight, and tool testing for the solution set:

  • Peter Valters, General Manager, Empowered Networks
  • Brian Joyce, IT Director, Decosimo Joseph & Company LLP
  • Sandie Terry, IT Director, Franklin County VA
  • Norman Weiner, CIO, Kaizen InfoSource LLC
  • David Fritzke, IT Executive, YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee
  • Mark Pettigrew, IT Project Manager, Huhtamaki Americas Inc.
  • Mathew Colona, CIO, Pite Duncan
  • Geetha Sendhil, Director of Student Affairs Technology, University of Nevada Las Vegas

There were five other companies who also provided assistance but for reasons of confidentiality requested not to be named.


Get the Complete Storyboard

See how all the steps you need to take come together, with tools and advice to help with each task on your list.

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Get to Action

  1. Understand the need to plan before beginning application consolidation.

    Recommend consolidation projects that will reduce IT costs and simplify business processes.

  2. Assess the organization's readiness for a consolidation project.

    Measure the organizational will and capability to deliver a software consolidation project.

  3. Create a plan for assessing the application portfolio for consolidation.

    Establish a framework for documenting the responsibilities and costs for the application assessment project.

  4. Identify the IT and business resource requirements for documenting and analyzing the project portfolio.

    Develop a budget for the application assessment.

  5. Document the application inventory and key criteria.

    Select the best candidates for application consolidation.

  6. Create project proposals for application consolidation.

    Secure approval for application consolidation recommendations.

Guided Implementation Icon Talk to an Analyst

Our analyst calls are focused on helping our members use the research we produce, and our experts will guide you to successful project completion.

  • Book an Analyst Call on this topic. You can start as early as tomorrow morning. Our analysts will explain the process in your first call.
  • Get advice from a subject matter expert. Each call will focus on explaining the material and helping you to plan your project, interpret and analyze the results of each project step, and setting the direction for your next project step.

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