AS400

A long overdue legacy modernization

What is the current AS400 situation?

Few decades earlier, many businesses across industry verticals such as Banking, Insurance, Manufacturing etc. built solutions on AS400. These solutions have come to support the ‘bread and butter’ processes in many organizations, hence CTOs/CIOs do not wish to bring about a change in the way they go about conducting their day to day business.

If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.

As these systems continue to service the current needs, there are inhibitions when it comes to shaking up the status quo. But how long will you manage this status quo?

The big question is ‘Who bells the cat?’

We put in a lotta money

Time, energy and money was spent in building/enhancing these systems, so the longer we run with the current setup, better the ROI. However, the quandary the CEOs face is

‘Is the milking of these investments worth the business risk it presents?’

Fine tuning with time

These systems don’t see ‘amateurish’  issues, but those who shaped these systems have retired or are about to, which diminishes understanding, making future fixes/enhancement more risky.

Sounds familiar?

What are we faced with?

Current reality often dictates choices and the future becomes a reflection of choices we make today.

While the technology leadership might be apprehensive of a change, they know it is wise to bring about and might be living through nightmares waiting to happen. We have seen ‘CIOs/CTOs grapple with these challenges’ in the past:

Scarcity of resources

CXOs can halt all enhancements and focus on support alone or train a bunch of millennials who have no RPG, AS400 or mainframe knowledge.

Inability to diversify risk

Mitigation of risk is vital and technology is no exception. Scarce skills result in those who develop these systems becoming indispensable.

Limited integration

Reluctance to move away from legacy systems makes it difficult to exchange data with new systems. Seamless, automated operations become time-taking and error-prone.

Uncertainty of impact

For the lack of documentation, business folks cannot understand and define the system behaviour. Changes in the code are followed by chaos, some patchwork and a few sleepless nights.

The world has come to a point where, the only way ahead is to stay in sync with technology.

What do we do?

For a problem that has been created across a couple of decades, there is no magic-bullet. However, that does not mean efforts shouldn’t be made to change the situation.

How we do it?

The way it should be done is like an ERP implementation.

  • Understand the system
  • Document the system
  • Participate in the support process
  • Derisk the ‘current execution’
  • Redefine & fine-tune the business processes
  • Simplify the current solution
  • Reassess future considerations
  • Chalk out the migration plan
  • Move to a modern technology
  • Phased migration
  • Offer ‘more’ to end users

What we offer?

Life cycle services for AS400

a. Performance analysis, quality assurance, documentation, System Administration and reverse engineering. We take care of everything

b. This includes rolling out patches, hot-fixes, minor/major releases to address enhancements/service requests from end customers. SLA driven service management ensures process alignment with end-user expectations.

a. As the ecosystem around AS400 systems evolve there are frequent and ongoing needs to integrate these systems with partner systems. We can help here too.

b. Common partner systems are –

  • Custom applications
  • MS office products like Outlook, Excel etc.
  • BI solutions for reporting & analytics
  • ERPs, CRM
  • v. Device integrations (Fingerprint scanners, phone, fax, barcode, etc.)

a. Porting applications to newer technologies is inevitable for business continuity.

b. We help you get there faster

  • Adopt more modern technologies (Java, .Net, PHP or any open source etc.)
  • Web/Mobile enablement of your RPG solution
  • Migrate DB2 to Oracle, SQL Server
  • Give meaning to your data through reports, visualizations, data warehouses