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Is Your Information Strategy Among the Walking Dead?

Who else has revamped their zombie apocalypse plan because of the TV series The Walking Dead (TWD)?

We can hardly wait for TWD’s season seven premiere in October…which feels like a lifetime. There’s more than a few of us who already started planning Dead-watching parties. Call it a way to get over show withdrawals. After all, a show that lasts more than a year or two gathers quite a cult following – or it dies.

If you’re not a TWD fan, here’s a quick back story. Deputy Grimes has been in a coma for months, then wakes up to find his world utterly changed. This new, post-apocalyptic world is full of zombies and an unruly assortment of humans who are almost as nasty as the show’s namesake.

Zombies, of course, are always hungry, gobbling up sustenance from anyone that will stand still long enough. The deputy gathers his family, friends and a few enemies together to survive against horrors that just don’t want to stay dead.

What does a cult show like TWD have to do with enterprise information strategies, besides the fact that we’re big fans of both?

Old habits die hard. Old systems die harder.

The truth is, many companies’ ECM strategies are a lot like the bad guys in TWD. Virtual zombies, (those antiquated business processes and their supporting infrastructure) are staggering, but they just won’t stay down. And like zombies, the longer companies wait to modernize these solutions, the longer they keep devouring valuable resources.

This situation doesn’t happen overnight. You don’t just wake up one day to a full-blown information management emergency. It happens a little at a time. The worst part? While everyone is terrified of it, they’ve gotten used to it. They accept the way it is and look for ways to deal with it.

Say you started using SharePoint as a document repository 10 years ago. Or, going back even further, you needed a central storage location for your files. You bought a new server with a mammoth 10 GB disk, and you started a file share.

As the years passed, the number of documents and revisions increased, as did the number of homegrown applications built around your solution. Then you tied your content storage into the corporate intranet. Then you had to add new extranet sites to share some information with partners. We can hear the scary music already….

Feeding the beasts

The solution was ravenous. You expanded the disk storage again and again. You frantically tried to keep up with dozens of ever-changing access control lists. And as you went beyond webpages and Word docs to resource-hungry media files and more, your IT budget, staff and infrastructure grew and grew.

And it’s still alive, if you can call it that.

It’s been one long, continuous feeding frenzy propping up those systems. And bolting on a new feature here and there is like putting a new jacket and top hat on a zombie. It looks nicer for a while – at least until dinner time.

Your business processes have adapted to accommodate the gross shortcomings of a strategy that just won’t die. Your employees and business partners have begrudgingly given in. Even your customers have accepted it.

But for how long?

You can’t afford the zombie-apocalypse anymore

New content types, the Internet of Things, the Digital Mesh (or fog), Big Data, Business Intelligence, Analytics… the list of innovations never ends. We’re in the midst of such rapid changes in information curation, processing and distribution that it’s impossible to keep this monster under control.

But coming up with a modern, adaptive strategy to handle all that is a massive undertaking, and it’s expensive, right?

The truth is, not modernizing your information strategy is costing you far more than slaying that zombie ever will. Think of all the ways the endless drains on infrastructure, people and processes keep your company from thriving.

Just the people-power alone needed to keep inefficient, manual processes going is staggering. And like our zombie friends, an outdated strategy will keep sucking more resources from your business – until you stop it, once and for all.

As long as we keep running away from the task of analyzing, strategizing and updating our information systems, we’re throwing good money after bad.

So here’s to many more seasons of The Walking Dead – and a new, modernized information strategy for your company, too.

Systemware has a proven way to assist you in modernizing your infrastructure, request a consultation with Systemware and let us help. Check out our LAP strategy product sheet to learn more about our approach.


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