Oct 24, 2022

Cost of Change vs. Cost of Doing Nothing

This blog explores why organisations are often hesitant to move solutions no matter how compelling the costs benefit. However, it equally explores why this can be fraught with danger.


Software vendors and integrators often hear a common objection: "The cost of transitioning to a new solution outweighs the proposed cost-benefit". Usually, this transition can include data migration, the recreation of critical customisations, user training, and project-related expenses. 


In the past, these costs have been high. However, in 2022, is the burden of transitioning still there? Or are we living in the past?


Of course, there will be elements of the above in any migration project; however, one must question to what extent. We exist in a world where UX is at the forefront of every software vendor's roadmap, out-of-the-box is preferred over heavily customised solutions, and simple, but well-thought-out organisational change simplifies adoption.


From an ITSM/ESM perspective, the ITIL framework is embedded into just about every solution out there, so the business processes are often identical; it's just a case of understanding the UI layout, which again is very similar based due to ITIL.

Cost of Change

Executives will often avoid moving from software applications due to the impact of change on the business and their operations, which can often outweigh proposed cost benefits, among other factors. However, several items can often lead organisations to remain with their incumbent solution, no matter how compelling the new solution's benefits are. Three (3 )of these items are summarised below:

Project Related Costs

Perhaps the most significant factor when considering changing applications is the effort required to retrain the organisation on the new solution. Depending on the use of the existing system, this can involve retraining multiple business lines and not just technical users. Additionally, large amounts of organisational change and project management are required to ensure a successful rollout. These disciplines can be relatively costly and blow out project costs.

Recreation of Functionally

Depending on the technical investment in the incumbent solution, organisations may need to invest significant time, money, and resource in recreating critical functionality. But, again, this investment can often outweigh the license cost savings.

Data Migration

Organisations may have years and years of data, including historic ticket information, knowledge articles, asset information, and more. The ingestion of this data into the new system is often a requirement for many reasons, such as regulatory requirements. In certain instances, bringing this data into the new solution can be arduous. As a result, data migration can lead to high internal and external costs.

Cost of Doing Nothing

Some IT executives delay moving Service Managementsolutions or spend too much time weighing the pros and cons of doing so,thinking the status quo around their current solution will miraculously change.


However, organisations may not realise that the cost of doing nothing – is much riskier in our new world of business enablement.

Let's dig into those three (3) areas of your business where the costs of doing nothing might be much higher than you think.


Cliché, but true, time is the most valuable resource. And if you spend too much time building out business processes in your Service Management solution, given its complexity, that's time you could have spent on revenue-generating projects. For instance, low code or codeless solutions provide organisations with the same flexibility without the complexity around time-intensive development found with code-based tools.

Technical Debt

Technical debt is the accumulation of work caused by not doing regular clean-up, maintenance, and standardisation during the solution lifecycle. Most organisations are hesitant to move because of the customisations they've made to their respective solutions over the years. However, why continue adding to the technical debt? Are these customisations providing business value, or are you merely compounding the issue? 


Much like there is an argument against moving solutions due to the inherent costs (i.e., training, project, and org change costs), there is the same argument for remaining with the status quo. Not only could a different vendor be able to provide cost-effective licensing, but they may also help reduce costs by lessening the maintenance burden. As a result, they could provide a higher level of support and have unique system configuration methods, such as codeless technology, allowing you to do more with less.


In summary, it comes down to the organisation's willingness to investigate all avenues with a long-term lens. Regrettably, in technology, we hear "No" to change more often than saying "Yes", which sometimes can be justified; however, in most instances, this is unsubstantiated and boils down to apathy among individuals. 


Whatever the reason, why continue investing in a solution you're not entirely satisfied with? You wouldn't continue to pour money into a lousy stock if it wasn't providing a return, so one must ask how this is any different.

About Service Quality:

Founded in 2007, Service Quality survives on a simple but powerful idea: empower you to do more with your Service Management and Security solutions. With cutting-edge support and award-winning security and service management practices, you can be sure that Service Quality will help maximise your Service Management investment. Today, hundreds of thousands of users rely daily on Service Management and Security solutions designed and implemented by Service Quality to make their work flow.

Written By: Angus Kenny - Director, Enterprise Solutions