On July 22nd, we sponsored an IBM Systems Magazine webinar titled “Preparing Enterprise IT for the Next 50 Years of the Mainframe.” The event was co-hosted by IBM Champion for Data and AI and IBM Gold Consultant Craig Mullins, President and Principal Consultant of Mullins Consulting, Inc., and Colin Oakhill, Sr. Management Consultant at Insoft Infotel. Together, Mullins and Oakhill looked at the history of centralized computing and offered insights into the obstacles and opportunities that will define the next 50 years of the mainframe.

Within 24 hours of the live event, a recap of the event was posted on CBS Interactive’s IT publication TechRepublic. In his TechRepublic article, author R. Dallon Adams offers a thorough recap, but a few key takeaways bear repeating:

  • The mainframe isn’t going anywhere

Despite famous predictions of the mainframe’s demise, the centralized computing platform continues to run mission-critical applications for almost 75% of the Global 500. In a Forrester Research study, 72% of enterprises said their customer-facing applications were “completely or very reliant on mainframe processing.”

  • The people that keep the platform running are disappearing

Forrester Research found that 23% of enterprise mainframe staff retired between 2013 and 2018, and 63% of those vacancies were still unfilled at the time of the study’s publication. The skills shortage is affecting all of IT, but the myth that mainframes are obsolete means mainframe talent pipelines are drying up even faster than those in the rest of the industry.

  • Mainframes have a future, provided we embrace the tools and technology to ensure it

Continued investment from IBM has yielded the most advanced mainframe hardware ever. The z15’s 190 configurable cores and 40TB of memory can delivery 1 trillion secure web transactions each day—all in a package designed for 99.99999% uptime. Combine the latest in hardware with the promise of modern Agile and DevOps development methodologies and mainframe teams will be able to overcome the skills gap and deliver more advanced applications faster than ever before.

It’s clear that the future of the mainframe is on a lot of minds. “Preparing Enterprise IT for the Next 50 Years of the Mainframe” was one of the most well-attended webinar’s in IBM Systems Magazine’s history with more than 900 registrants. Couldn’t make it to the webinar? View the recording here. For more of Insoft Infotel’s insights on the mainframe’s future, potential impediments to that progress, and how we’re helping overcome obstacles and power the platform, please visit https://insoft-infotel.com/.