Skip navigation
Skip navigation
You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser.

86% of UK Companies Have Critical Business Data Residing on Legacy Systems. 56% Will Invest in Legacy Systems in the Next Three Years

London, October 6, 2003 - Survey results released today cast serious doubts on the advice given to companies by some commentators to companies to rip out and replace legacy systems. The survey, commissioned by WRQ®, the integration software company, found that almost nine out of ten UK organisations hold critical business data, such as customer information or staff payroll details, on legacy systems. In fact, nearly a third have more than 40% of their corporate data residing on legacy systems.

Legacy applications and data are those that were in place long before the introduction of current technology, and as such, these systems represent the lifeblood of a company. Many have been in existence for more than 20 years.

The research also revealed that 56% of UK businesses plan to invest in their legacy systems over the next three years, and that well over half have already built on legacy systems when developing new software systems and applications in the last 12 months. These findings point to the fact that legacy systems still represent tremendous value and, with the right strategy and software, can be easily integrated with newer applications.

Bob Stream, head of WRQ UK, comments: “The fact that so many businesses rely on legacy systems for a variety of reasons highlights just how important the systems are, and how dangerous it can be for companies to get rid of them. Developed over a number of years, legacy systems have become the backbone of many businesses’ daily operations and I’m amazed that some organisations and analyst houses recommend companies switch a percentage of their legacy systems off as a means to save money. Businesses simply need to know how to unlock the potential of their legacy systems as it’s a much more cost-effective option when compared to ripping out and replacing them.”

Legacy systems can and should be tied to everything from CRM front-end applications to Web services, and there is software, such as the WRQ product portfolio, that can make it a reality. By identifying existing business processes, turning them into reusable components and storing them in a repository that can be accessed as required, organisations can change elements of their business within a matter of minutes, rather than weeks or months.

Bob Stream concludes: “It's a given today that businesses need to adapt and respond quickly to new technology trends, yet decreased budgets mean many can't execute new initiatives in the fastest way possible. Software such as WRQ Reflection® and WRQ Verastream® helps companies rapidly and continually adapt, ensuring organisations get continued value from their legacy applications today as they plan for technology change tomorrow.”

Summary of key findings:
86% of UK businesses have corporate business data residing on legacy systems.
(0% = 14%, 1- 20% = 42%, 21-40% = 13%, 41-60% = 12%, 61-80% = 13%, 81-100% = 6%)

59% of UK business have built on or integrated legacy systems when developing new software systems or applications in the last 12 months.
(Yes = 59%, No = 31%, Don't know = 4%, Not applicable = 6%)

56% of UK businesses will invest in, or continue to invest in, legacy systems in the next 3 years.
(Yes = 56%, No = 26%, Don't know = 11%, Not applicable = 7%)


About the survey
This survey was conducted for WRQ in August 2003 by market research firm, Vanson Bourne. The survey results were based on 100 interviews with IT directors in companies based in the UK.

About WRQ
WRQ has been connecting host applications with emerging technologies for more than two decades. WRQ Reflection host-access software provides a range of solutions for all your terminal emulation and PC X server needs. WRQ Verastream® integration-server software provides a single platform for reusing host logic and data in new web applications, packages applications, or portals.

WRQ has the highest ratings in the technology sector for customer support and loyalty. With over six million users in 51 countries, it is one of the largest privately held software companies in the U.S. Four out of five Fortune 500 companies rely on WRQ daily. Learn more at

Access. Integrate. Transform.™

WRQ, Reflection, and Verastream are registered trademarks of WRQ, Inc., in the USA and other countries. Some components of Verastream software include IBM Runtime Environment for AIX(r) and IBM Developer Kit for Linux(tm), Java(tm) 2 Technology Edition, v. 1.3.0, (c) IBM Corporation 1997-2000. All rights reserved. IBM and AIX are trademarks of IBM Corporation, and Java is a trademark of Sun Microsystems, Inc. All other trademarks, trade names, or company names referenced herein are used for identification only and are the property of their respective owners. USA patents pending.

For more information:
WRQ, Inc.
Liz Rafferty
+44 (0)1628 400 803

Jo Begbie
Brodeur Worldwide
+44 (0)207 298 7092

Vicki Cook
Brodeur Worldwide
+44 (0)207 298 7113

Claire Dell
Brodeur Worldwide
+44 (0)207 298 7046

Brodeur Worldwide Contacts

Jo Begbie
+44 (0)20 7298 7070
+44 (0)870 242 8323

Vicki Cook
+44 (0)20 7298 7070
+44 (0)870 242 8323

Company Contacts

Liz Rafferty
01628 400 800

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Pleon in the following categories: Consumer Technology, Personal Finance, Business & Finance, Computing & Telecoms, for more information visit