Jul 07, 2020
When you think about building the collection of software applications, programming languages, and frameworks that define your company’s technology stack, you’re most likely prioritizing goals around innovation, being client-centric, and making a sound investment in your company’s future growth.
However, approached correctly, with the mindset of using technology for your company’s competitive advantage, the existing technology stack doesn’t matter quite as much as you might think. Here’s why.
To give your company more control and be location-agnostic, first consider whether this planned technology can integrate with your existing systems. As long as you and your development partner can check off the basic requirement, your new system should be built to securely run in cloud infrastructure, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS). Your new system should also operate in an isolated environment for only this new system.
For most logistics and supply chain companies, once systems start migrating into cloud-based IT infrastructure, most other systems will move to a cloud-based environment as well.
Given this basic foundation, your existing technology stack, for better or worse, won’t impact how your new system is designed and developed. Perhaps even more importantly, your new system won’t be dependent on your existing infrastructure.
Although industry giants like DHL, FedEx, and UPS can take vastly different approaches because of their very large internal IT departments, logistics and supply chain companies with anywhere from a few dozen to a few hundred employees have much more limited internal IT teams.
With this in mind, it’s not realistic for small- to mid-sized companies to have enough internal IT expertise on systems design and development to cover all needed expertise.
As a basic systems architecture tenet, when a company has an on-site mainframe or server at a facility, the goal is for the new system to not be tightly connected with the legacy system. While integration with the legacy system totally makes sense, depending on the legacy system likely doesn’t.
Because it can be so difficult to predict what happens with physical hardware, your systems development partner should create your new system to be independent of legacy systems.
This approach also can provide a layer of protection against malware attacks. For example, one of our clients found this out the hard way.
One of their employees opened an email that looked like a customer complaint about delivery and shared that email with colleagues. As a result, the client’s warehouse management system, website, and ERP system went down for one week until everything could be reinstalled.
Following the malware attack, during that one week systems outage, the new system designed and developed by AgileVision was the only system left working. Why? Because the new system was built to not be dependent on existing infrastructure.
Is your logistics and supply chain company using technology for your company’s competitive advantage? Share your comments below.
And if you’d like to learn how to accelerate your growth, download our eBook, “Navigating Logistics and Supply Chain Problems That Stand in Your Way of Growth.”