ARTICLES

The Impact of Staffing and Skills Changes on Modernization Plans

In an earlier post, we discussed changes in the technology landscape that should be understood when evaluating an organization’s modernization plans. Another essential reality of the current IT market must be considered as part of a company’s modernization strategy: staffing and skills. For many organizations, staffing changes are driven by the inevitable march towards the retirement of a key constituent of the legacy application technology environment over the last 50 years – Baby Boomers. Baby

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MIPS versus MSUs: What’s the Difference?

How do we rate the capacity of IBM System Z mainframe hardware? Well, these days, IBM publishes the capacity rating of every mainframe that they sell in MSUs, not MIPS. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. When people discuss mainframe capacity, they often talk in terms of MIPS. But what does MIPS mean? And what is an MSU? A Little Bit of MIPS History Starting at the beginning, the question to ask is, “What

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Overcoming the Friction of IT Modernization Plans

Many organizations’ modernization plans become “the best-laid plans of mice and men.”  Plans that are easily waylaid by organizational or business distractions become convenient excuses for postponing IT modernization projects. This is especially true during times of economic downturn and the potential of a recession. Many times, the “problem” is more one of friction that occurs both before and during the project itself. Modernization plans can cause organizational friction as different factions of the IT

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The Whack-a-Mole Effect: Tuning Mainframe Usage for Cost Savings

There are many reasons for tuning your mainframe applications. Surely the most important reason is to provide faster access to your end users. The quicker an application responds, the happier the people that use it will be. But a close second is likely to be cost reduction. Unfortunately, tuning to achieve cost savings is frequently undertaken without a good understanding of just how mainframe costs are calculated. Or at least the major contributor to those

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Understanding Mainframe Pricing to Aid in Modernization and Cost Control

Cost containment is an important criterion for IT departments as organizations everywhere embrace financial austerity. Every decision regarding your computer resources is weighed based on not only the value that it can deliver to your organization, but upon the cost to procure, implement, and maintain. And in most cases, if a positive return on investment cannot be calculated, the software will not be adopted, or the hardware will not be upgraded. One area that many

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Is It Time to “Modernize” your Modernization Plans?

Over the last several decades, I have spoken to many organizations about their mainframe application “modernization plans.” Many claim to HAVE plans, but few report any progress toward completion! Why is that? Why are modernization plans so difficult to start and complete? Perhaps it’s best summarized in the line from a Robert Burns poem – “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry”!  In other words, no matter how a project is planned,

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What is DRDA? zIIPs and Distributed Db2 SQL

When it comes to exploiting the zIIP specialty processor, a lot of attention is paid to distributed Db2 SQL requests, and rightly so. Distributed SQL issued against Db2 is one of the largest opportunities for reducing stress on general purpose processors. Indeed, most modern applications that access Db2 data do so using dynamic SQL using DRDA. But let’s back up a moment and take a look at some of these terms and what they mean.

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Three Reasons It Makes Sense to Convert Some of Your COBOL to Java

Mainframes continue to be viable for enterprise computing due to their inherent capabilities for supporting the most critical business functions. When it comes to supporting large volumes of data, high-speed transaction processing, and secure computing the mainframe continues to excel. The Fortune 1000 relies upon mainframes to run their business, and of course, much of those business applications are written in COBOL. Indeed, a large number of mainframe applications are written in COBOL and new

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The Impact of Tailored Fit Pricing (TFP) on zIIPs

Today’s article in my series on zIIP processors will be a little different because I want to focus on a specific IBM mainframe pricing model and how users of that model may benefit from using zIIPs. The pricing model, Tailored Fit Pricing (TFP), is the latest model introduced by IBM. But what is TFP, and how does it differ from the sub-capacity pricing models used by most organizations? The Current State: Sub-Capacity Pricing Models IBM

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Is the Java Modernization Destination Quality or Maintainability?

Your organization has taken the leap and chosen to modernize your existing COBOL monoliths into Java-based application services, ready for the cloud. Your team plots out a journey toward success. Rather than taking a risky big-bang approach, each incremental release on the road toward modernization is prioritized and scheduled to save costs and capture value that finances the next step. The automation factory starts to chew up old tables and churn out Java. The destination

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The Impact of Staffing and Skills Changes on Modernization Plans

The Impact of Staffing and Skills Changes on Modernization Plans

In an earlier post, we discussed changes in the technology landscape that should be understood when evaluating an organization’s modernization plans. Another essential reality of the current IT market must be considered as part of a company’s modernization strategy: staffing and skills. For many organizations, staffing changes are driven by the inevitable march towards the […]

MIPS versus MSUs: What’s the Difference?

MIPS versus MSUs: What’s the Difference?

How do we rate the capacity of IBM System Z mainframe hardware? Well, these days, IBM publishes the capacity rating of every mainframe that they sell in MSUs, not MIPS. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. When people discuss mainframe capacity, they often talk in terms of MIPS. But what does MIPS mean? And […]

Building a Business Case for Shifting COBOL Compute

Building a Business Case for Shifting COBOL Compute

Developing a sound business case for your modernization projects is critical to success. The business case helps you communicate your modernization project’s impact, scope, cost, and lasting benefits. It lets you plan and rationalize the modernization choices you’ll make in the project. Without a strong business case, your project is less likely to succeed.    Attend […]