As IT technology has evolved, some businesses have phased out their mainframe in favour of new technologies.

According to Mark Neft1, a managing director in Accenture’s Enterprise Architect and Application Strategy group, companies that do so could be overlooking a major asset.

Neft said that many businesses that relinquish their mainframe often end up creating a tangled mess or a system that does not work coherently. These systems are likely to overwhelm organizations with their complexity and excessive costs.

Neft suggested that instead of automatically assuming that a mainframe cannot do the job, businesses should take four steps to check and review their mainframe or mainframe replacement strategy.

First, the organization should review what needs to be achieved and ask whether this can be done with the existing or an upgraded mainframe. Retaining or upgrading the mainframe can reduce complexity and cost outlays.

Second, take time to calculate the true baseline costs for any platform extensions. While mainframes can appear to be expensive, they support a wide range of applications and large volumes of data. Compare the cost of the mainframe against the cost of all the new tools for a truer assessment of costs.

Third, businesses should review what their existing technology already does for them. For example, many businesses do not realize that their mainframe provides constant availability for certain applications.

Lastly, businesses to learn about that their mainframes can do and how they can upgrade the mainframe or enhance it with additional tools to boost system performance. This can reduce complexity, risk, and cost.

[1] https://www.destinationz.org/Mainframe-Solution/Business-Case/accenture-mainframe-often-overlooked-asset.aspx