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Top Tips for Improving Legacy Software

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When there are plenty of options for system enhancements, how do you know where to start when considering improvements?  

Let us take you through the most important points to consider when improving existing software, whether it’s an internal application or a customer-facing one. 

1. Improving Speed and Availability 

When considering application improvements, speed is often the last on the list when it should be the first to be considered. Ideas for new and exciting features are likely to make existing performance issues even worse, so speed and reliability should be considered first. Otherwise you risk ending up with worse functionality than what you started off with. 

  • Importance of speed for customer-facing systems: It is critical to make the experience quick and smooth for customers or they will avoid touching it again.  
  • Importance of speed for internal systems: Time is money with internal systems. Long load times costs the business, especially for applications and features that are in regular use. Companies also need to consider how the application performs at peak times. If a financial system is mainly used for month end, then it is the performance at that time which has the biggest impact on employee productivity.  

2. User Experience 

2 A. UX for Internal Apps: Productivity 

The UX optimisation of an internal application has a huge impact on employee productivity and your bottom line. 

UX is about how the system looks and feels, for example, having the system mapped out in a way that makes sense for how the user will need to use it. UX is also related to what information the system should show, where, and how that info should be presented (graph, chart, etc.). 

Well thought out applications can also reduce employee errors which depending on the purpose of the software can prove very costly.  

For example, Citibank recently lost $500m through incorrect transactions as a result of clunky software and poor UI within their back-office system 

2 B. UX for Customer-Facing Apps: Better UX Wins More Business 

According to research by Deloitte, customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable. When you make the decision to put the customer at the centre of your business, you’re already a major step closer to success.  

Airbnb attribute improved UX for taking them from zero to their first $10M. 

Also, a study by Soussan Djamasbi et al., looking at UX design and especially the mobile user experience, revealed that when design was optimised for users, marketing and sales stats improved greatly.  

Some of the results of optimising UX were:  

30% increase in sales  

50% decrease in bounce rate  

Suddenly we can see that UX is critical in lead generation and conversion. Improving UX is often one of the most efficient ways of generating a big return on investment. You’ll keep reaping the rewards long after the project has been completed. 

3. Developing Features that Add Value 

Finally, you should identify the features that drive the most business value. You may well find that some features that help with KPIs are missing or don’t achieve what they’re meant to achieve.  

Are you dependent on human-managed processes? In that case some automation or workflow orchestration is in place. 

Also look at what your competitors are doing with similar software. Do they have features that increase customer loyalty? Are any of their features a USP? 

We’ve been seeing a lot of customer-facing apps coming up in the legal world. Many conveyancing firms now have apps to manage the customer relationship. The apps tend to offer instant messaging with the case handler, legal documentation, and progress reports. The firms who do not have their own app, or don’t have the full set of features, are missing out on business from digitally native first-time buyers. 


Meet with us to audit your app and pinpoint specific improvements. Get in touch using the form below or book right into the calendar

Our full-stack developers understand how the changes done at backend will improve the frontend, resulting in better and speedier use of the app. 

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