Perspectives

Mainframe talent drain

As mainframes remain mission-critical to the future of hybrid IT, does your workforce have the talent and skills to keep up? Find out how IT leaders are addressing the talent gap to support modern IT environments across core, private, cloud, and edge.

Our recent survey of business and IT leaders shows that mainframe footprints are growing, along with the data and applications on them. But for most companies, recruiting and retaining the right talent to support and secure the core systems where their most critical data resides is a challenge. How are they addressing this talent gap as they move into the future? And how will you?

Finding and keeping the right talent is tough

According to Deloitte’s 2020 Mainframe Market Pulse Survey, there’s plenty of interest in mainframes—especially in upgrading legacy environments as the foundation for hybrid strategies in data- and transaction-heavy industries.

But the workforce with the skills to support these systems? Aging out. The pipeline to fill these roles? Diminishing.

Here’s what 261 business and IT leaders revealed about the mainframe talent gap and how they’re attempting to mitigate it. These insights offer a window into their thinking and can be useful in guiding your talent, investment, and IT strategies.

Finding experts is definitely a challenge. Bringing people onboard and trying to train them and bring them up to speed is a long-term investment from a personnel perspective. It takes at least one or two years to bring them up to speed and catch them up on how mainframes are dealt with compared to the other technologies. Mainframes are a niche skill.

—VP of security engineering and risk for a financial services organization

Can you bridge the talent gap?

With growth in mainframe usage on the rise, including the amount of data and applications on the mainframe, many organizations are struggling to improve their security, compliance, and operational efficiency. But they lack the resources to do it. Many are wondering who will modernize and run their legacy apps, keep data safe and secure, and integrate with other enterprise systems—all of which are challenging to staff, train, and maintain internally.

In fact, more than half of survey respondents said they plan to use outside resources to accomplish mainframe-related goals over the next three years.

Transition plans can help. And so can Deloitte. With a network of more than 1,000 mainframe-focused professionals across the globe, we have the resources and experience to help you modernize core systems to accelerate your possible across core, hybrid, and edge environments.

Our tools, accelerators, and resources help you make sense of existing code, applications, and infrastructure, offering a more complete view of the IT landscape. Our teams can help your organization address talent gaps, maintain and update operations and applications, and set you on a path to sustainable success.
 

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