In the early days of information systems, most software consisted of fairly simple sets of binary instructions that told computers how to work. Today, software is the engine that drives the global economy, powering the vast majority of the world’s operational, manufacturing, financial, administrative and communication functions. Research suggests software innovation adds more than $1 trillion to the U.S. economy every year.
The Critical Nature of Communications Software Updates
With software controlling the functionality of almost all information systems, it has never been more important to ensure that critical applications are continually updated, secured and optimized to ensure peak performance and reliability. Software assurance programs help organizations keep pace with technological changes by creating a system for continuous improvements. While these programs vary by vendor, most provide subscription-based access to ongoing technical support as well as security patch management, bug fixes, feature updates and major version upgrades.
Many organizations tend to put off updates and make do with aging software because people have become comfortable with it and it seems to work just fine. However, there are hidden risks. Security vulnerabilities are by far the greatest of these. According to the Department of Homeland Security, roughly 85 percent of all data breaches involve unpatched software.
Managing Communications Software Risks
The ever-growing number of exploitable application flaws has led to a corresponding increase in the number of patches and updates issued by vendors. As of April 2020, Secunia Research recorded a total of 87,113 vulnerabilities in 50,302 products from 10,978 vendors. Software assurance programs can help time-strapped IT departments stay on top of the updates and patches they need to address these vulnerabilities.
Beyond security concerns, outdated software also hinders productivity, impedes automation and is more prone to failures that could result in downtime and lost data. Older programs that are not compatible with new software and hardware may stop working altogether.
A problem with one application can also create issues across multiple systems due to the intertwined nature of large software systems. Much of today’s software is built on layers of pre-written code, scripts and web services pulled from open-source software libraries. The average program has 445 separate open-source components, according to a recent study by Synopsys. While using discrete components speeds software development, it also creates dependencies that could spark cascading problems.
What Mitel’s Software Assurance Plans Offer
Today’s business communication systems are highly dependent on this complex interplay of applications. For example, a unified communications (UC) platform isn’t a single application but rather an integrated collection of distinct components for voice, video, text, collaboration, mobility, business process integration and more. Software assurance programs help ensure that upgrades to any individual component are compatible with all other components.
As Mitel Platinum Partner, IPC provides access to Mitel’s Software Assurance plans as part of our maintenance and support services. These subscription services enable you to keep your software up-to-date by sending you new releases and patches as soon as they are available. Mitel’s Premium plan includes Mitel Performance Analytics, a fault and performance management solution that monitors and manages your entire network. The result is faster problem resolution and optimal network performance.
UC is one of the many essential business processes that are highly dependent on layers of underlying software. Keeping those applications updated, secured and optimized requires a disciplined process for continuous improvement. IPC can help you keep your Mitel communications system in top working order by delivering updates, patches and other services through Mitel’s Software Assurance program. Give us a call to learn more.