Mainframes and Hybrid Apps

by Ronald Nunan on March 26, 2013

I was recently going through some old articles and found this survey from late last year, “The Mainframe and Innovation: Not Mutually Exclusive.” In looking through the actual survey, conducted by Decipher Research, I was reminded of the ongoing strength for hybrid applications in Enterprise IT. Looking at the survey data, you can see it captured some interesting points on the mainframe with respect to current trends:

  • 81% globally, 77% in US, of respondents see the mainframe as strategic to current and future plans.
  • More than a third, 44% globally, will enable mobile management for the mainframe.
  • 74% expect to allow mobile and the mainframe within 12-18 months.

But what is also interesting is the expected change to the mainframe workforce:

  •  A majority, 66%+ US and 74% Globally, expect upcoming problems fulfilling on mainframe specific skills.
  • 98% think are prepared to ensure continuity with respect to the mainframe workforce.

These two figures seem counter-intuitive. Yet looking further in the survey detail, you can see why these figures make sense.

Over the next year 89% of these enterprise shops are evolving their approach to building applications and embracing hybrid applications. This is a huge trend in enterprise IT. This change in approach allows applications to run across platforms, but it also allows them to leverage various skill-sets and be less dependent on any one. The modern mainframe shop will not be one just be staffed by a skilled mainframe workforce, it will encompass workers strong across multiple platforms and specifically, in web technologies.

Looking at this survey and others, you can expect the modern IT environment to continue to leverage the mainframe, but in a way that is different. It will be the  ‘server’ platform that sits behind HTML5  and other mid-tier front-ends. These survey results are consistent with what I see occurring in enterprise IT — they make sense to me.

What are you seeing, are you prepared for this change?

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