We live in the online world. the way of business and technology seems to be all mobile and cloud these days. Nevertheless, Mainframes remain paramount and integral to core business transactions worldwide and are here to stay.
- An estimated 80% of the world’s corporate data resides on mainframes
- 55% of all enterprise applications need a mainframe to complete transactions
- 91% of surveyed CIOs said their new customer-facing applications access mainframes
At CA Technologies we feel that Continuous Delivery for the mainframe holds the key to digital transformation with minimal disruption. The mainframe needs to be connected to your continuous delivery pipelines and DevOps practices in order to be completely agile and responsive to business demands.
At present most mainframe users face significant challenges that hinder agility:
- Driven by manual interactions – ISPF panels initiate CLIST scripts
- Collaboration of multiple Development and Ops teams means lots of processes and procedures
- Applications written many years ago in COBOL and other legacy languages
- Although most services use a mixture of mainframe apps, the two are treated differently with dedicated change processes and toolsets
- Need to mitigate risk and ensure compliance in a highly regulated environment
CA Automic Release Automation (CA ARA) connects digital and mainframe applications, automates them and incorporates them in an automated workflow. The results are remarkable – two CA ARA customers saw the following improvements:
- 36x faster – three days reduced to two hours
- 12.5 man-years saved
- 1200% cheaper
Test data copy:
- 8x faster – four hours reduced to 30 minutes
- 218 man days saved per year
3 Ways to Increase Agility for Mainframes
There are three prominent mainframe interactions that require agility if the enterprise is to complete a successful digital transformation:
1. Updates of and maintenance to mainframe applications
There is currently a lack of control and end-to-end visibility when Devs manipulate mainframe code. As the mainframe usually contains core business data, this is the area in which these attributes are needed most.
CA ARA allows Devs to manage multiple simultaneous releases and/or intricate dependencies and allows business users and managers to track statuses and completion times.
2. Application development using both mainframe and distributed systems
Data from mainframes is integrated into the same automated deployment pipeline as used for distributed applications, meaning mainframe interactions no longer inhibit release velocity.
Repeatable objects and processes give much-needed consistency and reliability to development lifecycles.
3. Compliance and economical scalability
The need for compliance and audit in the present day is at odds with mainframe technology involving manual interactions. Automating the mainframe with CA ARA means every action and interaction is documented and stored to be accessed at any time.
While mainframes have always been extremely scalable, in the past this has come at great cost. Removing unnecessary manual processes means the abilities of expensive, experienced mainframe staff can be maximized.