During a recent client visit I encountered workspaces with older computers, monitors and software that I hadn’t seen in a while and it made me think about keeping current in the face of changing technology. There has been two significant changes in how software and server hardware can be purchased may warrant consideration if your systems are getting older. And though your equipment and software won’t necessarily stop working tomorrow, they could be costing you in lost productivity and increased risk of data loss and downtime as well as illegal access given they have may no longer be receiving security updates.
The first change is the option to move your onsite server infrastructure that you purchase and maintain to an offsite “Cloud” server site which we covered in this November 2018 article. Secondly, is the transition in the way software is purchased from an outright purchase to a monthly/yearly Subscription model. We’ve seen this on the Sage front where they’ve made it worthwhile for the great majority of our clients to move to this model. It does have its benefits as adding modules/users becomes less of a large financial outlay and easier to cashflow.
The largest provider of operating system and office productivity software, Microsoft, has done the same with Office 365, a subscription version of the popular suite of products. They are working to migrate their client base to the subscription model as people upgrade. Almost 10 years ago, Microsoft pledged a support lifecycle of 10 years for each new version of Windows or Office. Microsoft Office 2007 expired in 2017 and the 2010 version is scheduled to expire in 2020. However, along the way the Fixed Lifecyle policy changed and Microsoft has a long-list on products, including Office 2013 whose support dates end this year and next as part of a newer lifecycle policy. It can get complicated with Windows 10 but this ZDNet article may help if you want to know more.
That being said, I want to encourage you to review your technological needs on a yearly basis. We can help if you want some guidance to start though we don’t sell hardware or software other than our Sage related business solutions. We can recommend a hosted server solutions provider that is familiar with the needs of Sage 300 organizations if that is an area you would like to explore.