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Chris Bliss

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Yesterday is dangerous, live for tomorrow

It’s rare we get upset at prospective clients, but it happens sometimes, especially when they just don’t get it. Point in case: we recently visited the aging president of a mid-sized non-profit who insisted on retaining a decades-old IT infrastructure. Pointing at years of successful fund-raising, he downplayed the importance of replacing a decrepit website and antiquated delivery system. This is what we told him:

Change is scary, especially with a successful status-quo. Most organizations and businesses are loathe to change IT systems even in the worst of times, more so when times are good. Don’t fix what isn’t broken, right?

Wrong. Cloud computing and SaaS are indefatigably, undeniably, irreversibly changing how business is done. Adapting to that change will define tomorrow’s leaders, irregardless of industry or sector or market position. It’s a game-changing moment that’s re-defining new business boundaries every single day, and there’s tangible danger to not addressing and incorporating it.

The danger is that the times changes fast but transitions are slow. It takes time to build a modern website: it doesn’t take long to fall behind.

The danger is that yesterday’s clients become irrelevant and today’s prospects aren’t impressed with – or worse, don’t understand – your legacy business processes. Good luck telling a prospective 30 year old why you require a fax.

The danger is that you can’t attract new talent. Who’s going to sign with an employer who doesn’t understand blogging, nevermind SaaS?

The danger is that you miss out on millions of lost revenue, granting competitor’s a competitive edge. Once behind always behind.

We’re not usually ones for FUD tactics, but it’s serious stuff and well-worth considering. Don’t let a good year fool you…

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Chris Bliss works at VM Associates, an end-user consultancy for businesses looking to move to the cloud from pre-existing legacy systems.