System administrators and webmasters know that managing a traditional CMS can be very time consuming. The maintenance costs behind a legacy system are the major cost driver. Whether it is an open-source CMS or a commercial content management system: The initial costs are often just a fraction of what needs to be invested over the life cycle of the CMS. The total cost of ownership (TCO) to keep the CMS up and running is the main burden over time.
A traditional CMS and its software components such as databases and operating systems needs to be managed 24/7/365, keeping the IT department busy with ensuring that the basic foundations are safe and secure. No visible value is created, it’s just something you have to do to keep your website alive. Parallel projects change and enhance the system, a defined, tested production environment status becomes a moving target. Additionally, forced freeze periods stall the business. For security reasons, a sloppy implementation of the required system administration processes is not an option.
System administration costs are added to the costs of providing the IT infrastructure. Operating a classic CMS makes a professional data center mandatory. These require redundant servers for the CMS, databases, etc. and are kept running in development, test and production environments. Due to the 24/7/365 nature of the system, backups, network management, monitoring, power supply and all other jobs associated with the data center must be maintained. Even if the systems are hosted remotely, these jobs have to be performed. The level of redundancy of a 100 % true-cloud SaaS CMS running on a professional cloud provider like AWS can simply never be achieved with an on-premise installation, neither in your own data center nor if hosted remotely.
If the system malfunctions, the impact is visible to all employees, customers, and partners. Often, a CMS only gains the attention of the C-level when a problem occurs. Many IT managers try to master this challenge by choosing an on-premise CMS from a major vendor. IT managers thus hope there are clear responsibilities for troubleshooting and support. This doesn’t become real because the software just gets more complex, not more manageable. The only difference is the cost.