Lessons Learned: Looking Inside A Technology Revamp

It’s not very often that you get to take a peak into a before and after experience in regards to how a company was before a technology transformation and how the business was AFTER the technology transformation.
Inc Magazine has a great story of how one executive shrunk staff, outsourced his IT and started using more hosted applications to be more productive and save money.
When it comes to IT, you might say 2nd Wind had let itself go a little. In 2007, when CFO Tom Kelly joined the exercise-equipment retailer, he discovered that the company’s tech systems — both in its 90 stores and its Eden Prairie, Minnesota, headquarters — were in a state of neglect. E-mail was being hosted on a seven-year-old version of Microsoft Exchange, and many other applications were behind the times. Kelly estimated it would cost nearly $300,000 just to upgrade 2nd Wind’s e-mail software and servers. Instead, he opted to jettison many of the company’s old programs and servers and switch to cheaper, Web-based software. This year, 2nd Wind plans to make more tech upgrades, and Kelly thinks the Web-based approach will allow the company to further trim its spending. Here’s a look at the budget he inherited compared with his budget for this year.

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