Software Maintenance

Why You Need a Post-Implementation Maintenance Strategy Before Launching New Software

October 11, 2022
5 minutes
Why You Need a Post-Implementation Maintenance Strategy Before Launching New Software

When organisations invest in new software, the focus is typically on selecting a solution, completing the implementation and getting the system live to start achieving the intended benefits as quickly as possible. However, without a comprehensive maintenance strategy established prior to launch, software cannot reach or sustain its full potential. A post-implementation maintenance strategy is essential to controlling costs, reducing risks, optimising performance and maximising the value gained from software investments over the long run.

Define roles and responsibilities

Map out what internal teams, external vendors and providers will handle which elements of software maintenance such as infrastructure, applications, security and use case support. Define a governance structure for guidance and oversight.   

Map procedures

Establish specific standard operating procedures around activities such as patch management, vulnerability monitoring, license reviews, access management and change implementation.  Documented procedures allow a consistent and measured response.   

Set policies

Institute key policies requiring elements like routine security audits and penetration testing, annual technology road mapping, and reviews of milestones or key performance indicators achieved. Policies introduce the necessary structure and discipline.   

Determine monitoring

Identify what metrics, logs and activities will be monitored and how to maintain visibility into software performance, user experience, security events and access details. Always-on monitoring is made possible through managed services. Contact us for a free consultation.

Secure funding

Work closely with technology and finance leaders to determine appropriate funding levels for both ongoing and unplanned or emergency software maintenance needs. Present a case to establish post-implementation maintenance as a strategic business investment rather than an overhead cost.  

Plan for enhancements

While initial functionality focuses on implementation, develop a plan identifying how and when software will be enhanced to continue meeting the evolving needs of users and organisations. Enhancement planning leads to systems that remain relevant in the future.  

Establish success metrics 

Define key performance indicators and milestones by which the success and business value delivered through software maintenance efforts will be measured. Success metrics make the outcomes and advantages of mature maintenance strategies tangible. 

Success metrics provide targets and measurable outcomes to evaluate the effectiveness of your software maintenance programs and partnerships. Some examples of useful success metrics include:

  • Mean time to resolution: A decreasing mean time to resolution shows that software issues are addressed rapidly with minimal impact. Quick resolution reduces risks and costs.
  • Patch compliance: A high patch compliance percentage (e.g. 95%+) demonstrates that software and infrastructure are kept up-to-date with the latest fixes and releases according to policy. Patching reduces vulnerabilities.  
  • Vulnerability remediation: A growing percentage of detected vulnerabilities remediated within set timeframes (e.g. 30 days) shows risks are addressed promptly through maintenance. Vulnerability response indicates improved security posture.
  • Enhancements delivered: An increasing number of software enhancements, new features or upgrades released per year proves solutions are optimised to continue enabling key outcomes. Enhancements sustain value and experience.  
  • Cost avoidance: A decreasing spend on unplanned maintenance, outsourced support, regulatory penalties or other unexpected costs shows discipline and effectiveness of maintenance procedures and policies in controlling expense and issues. Cost avoidance quantifies a real return on maintenance investment.  
  • Customer satisfaction: Improving customer satisfaction scores specifically related to software experience and stability demonstrate maintenance success in optimizsng solutions for maximised value to end users. Customer perception is a key indicator of performance.  
  • Compliance: Maintaining compliance with all data protection, privacy, security and other standards governing your software illustrates the due diligence of maintenance controls, audits and risk management practices. Sustained compliance reduces risks linked with policy violations or penalties.
  • Staff productivity: Increasing productivity and morale reduced wasted effort on disruption response or manual workarounds signifies maintenance success in providing tools and systems optimised for evolving needs and priorities. Productivity depends entirely on functionality and performance.  

Success looks different for every software and organisation but should always be defined by and measured against objectives before implementation begins. Metrics make maintenance tangible by giving shape and milestones to abstract yet business-critical concepts like stability, risk reduction and optimisation. Maintenance without metrics is flying blind. Land safely—see your progress measured out, your partnerships proven in value and your software secured a future through outcomes, not best intentions alone. Metrics count when it matters most. How is your success defined? Are you there yet? With the right plan, every milestone will be in reach.

Create roadmaps 

Build multi-year technology roadmaps highlighting how software will be monitored, supported, developed and potentially replaced over time. Roadmaps lead to "future-proofed" systems through proactive optimisation. 


Too often maintenance is an afterthought underfunded and lacking a formal strategy. But without diligent maintenance, software risks becoming outdated, insecure and ill-equipped to produce the intended value. A strong post-implementation maintenance strategy means gaining maximum control and benefit from your software investments for as long as they are in use. The success of technology investments depends entirely on what comes after implementation. 

Anticipate needs, allocate necessary resources and forge the partnerships to meet them your software's fate and your own competitive future hang in the balance. With a sound plan in hand, software will work for you as long as you're willing to work on its behalf. Get started now. Your strategy is waiting. Contact us for a free consultation. 

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