Platform Modernization with an MVP: The All-in-One Guide
The Dangers of Legacy Applications
Due to the constantly evolving technology landscape, software companies need to adapt to shifting consumer demands. However, investing time and resources into building a new platform is risky. An ill-fated product launch can disrupt the user experience, harm customer loyalty, and retention, and increase the burden and stress on your DevOps team.
Neglecting legacy software modernization, on the other hand, can lead to even more problems:
- With an outdated user interface and feature set, your legacy system will suffer from a degrading user experience over time.
- Your competitors can swoop in with high-quality modern products that steal your market share.
- Older legacy platforms are difficult to integrate with modern systems, such as cloud-based software.
- Talented job candidates may prefer working at companies with cutting-edge and in-demand programming languages and technologies.
The above disadvantages of outdated software are both highly common and highly detrimental to organizations. A full 88% of enterprise IT systems are legacy technologies, and half of these are part of the core business. Meanwhile, according to a Deloitte survey, enterprises spend 57% of their IT budgets on supporting existing systems and business operations rather than fostering business change and innovation.
If you’re experiencing one of the familiar cues to modernize legacy systems — from high maintenance costs to performance issues — then it’s a sign that you need an application modernization strategy. To address these issues, more and more companies are looking to modernize legacy systems with MVP development. So what is MVP modernization, and how can businesses get started with building an MVP?
Why an MVP for Platform Modernization?
A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product that has been released with just enough features to perform its basic functions and get input and advice for future product development. The concept of an MVP is taken from the “lean startup” methodology, which encourages fast iterative cycles and listening to customer feedback when building new products and businesses.
The term “MVP” often refers to a totally new item or service that is created to validate a product idea. In this setting, MVPs are used for testing the market to see if there is a large enough audience for a certain product.
However, MVPs can be built not only for new product ideas but also for existing systems and products that will be significantly changed with a modernization approach. As we use it in this article, “MVP” refers to the new version of a legacy technology that, if successful, will play host to a modern implementation of that technology.
Whether it’s for a new product or an existing legacy system, the MVP model has several benefits. Building an MVP, instead of releasing a full-fledged final product into the wild, allows your team to build, validate, and test the new product without disrupting the user experience for current customers. MVPs also let you get feedback and iterate quickly by releasing new features, rather than spending time developing features that your audience doesn’t like or doesn’t find useful. This cost-effective approach saves time and resources.
How To Design and Build an MVP for Platform Modernization
Are you looking to modernize a platform with MVP software development? The MVP development process goes through three main stages, from brainstorming to the MVP launch.
In this first step, the business (and the MVP development partner, if you have one) reviews its current technology setup and understands its future vision for the product. This stage may consist of investigations such as:
- Competitor analysis: Examining the strengths and weaknesses of alternative products.
- Gap analysis: Understanding the differences between the product’s actual and desired performance.
- Build and buy analysis: Deciding whether you prefer to purchase an off-the-shelf product or build your own.
- User research: Studying the needs, behaviors, desires, and motivations of the product’s likely users.
If you work with an MVP development partner, this stage often takes between one and two months.
After assessing your business needs and objectives, the next step is to align them with the MVP development process. This stage generates high-level solutions to the questions suggested by the assessment stage.
The alignment stage includes a proposal of the MVP solution and an analysis of its strengths and weaknesses. Then, the business or development partner defines a product roadmap and timeline for the MVP project. This stage may also include brainstorming the user interface, including building low-fidelity and high-fidelity prototypes.
Depending on the complexity of the legacy system, building an MVP for platform modernization may take three months or longer. The business then enters the refinement stage, where the product is iteratively improved and optimized based on testing and user feedback.
At this stage, MVP developers have a backlog of features, issues, and bug requests to continue working on the product. The product may also go through more rigorous usability testing, ensuring that it is suitable for deployment. If the product involves a significant technical component, the refinement stage should also include a proof of concept (POC) to ensure that the idea is technically feasible.
MVP Platform Modernization with KMS
Building an MVP for your legacy systems can help save you valuable time and effort during the platform modernization process. Working with an MVP development partner can help address the most common obstacles in MVP development.
KMS Technology is a global market leader in the fields of software development, technology consulting, project management, and data analytics. We provide a wide range of IT offerings, including MVP development.
Our list of MVP development services includes the following:
- Defining product requirements and use cases to establish the best product-market fit.
- Creating high-fidelity prototypes to demonstrate the user experience.
- Building and validating the software’s code base with thorough testing and QA practices.
- Providing long-term support and maintenance and adding new product features.
Ready to learn more about how KMS can help with a platform modernization MVP? Download our free MVP Software Development Workbook to learn how to get started with an MVP launch.