Industry retirees leave mainframe computers behind

Old equipment poses staffing challenge

While many organizations continue to rely on mainframe computers, the employees who know how to program and operate them are retiring at a rapid rate, according to a report in BusinessWeek. Meanwhile, the younger incoming employees haven’t worked with the technology much, or at all..

As a result, companies such as like IBM and CA Technologies are providing training on the mainframes and offer programs designed to make the seemingly outdated technology more appealing to a younger generation, BusinessWeek reported.


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IBM has offered training to institutions and launched a competition named Master the Mainframe to get younger people working with the old computers. CA Technologies replaced its decades-old Disk Operating System screen to appeal to people who have grown up on the graphically rich Web and Apple computers, according to the report.

In recent years, the number of mainframe computers decreased significantly as better computer systems have developed, but mainframe computers still are deep in many companies' infrastructures. Although young people want new mobile devices, the mainframes are important, and companies are keeping mainframe experts on board longer, the report states.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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