Sunday, 20th October 2019
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Businesses looking to expand mainframe capabilities in AI, blockchain and more

The study uncovers barriers to cloud migration, challenges facing digital transformation and plans for the future through mainframes.

Ensono, in collaboration with Wipro Limited, has launched jointly commissioned research conducted by Forrester Consulting to understand the future of mainframe in enterprises. The study involving 153 IT decision makers at director level or above across the USA and Europe, found that 50% of organizations will continue with mainframe and increase its use in the next two years versus just 5% planning to decrease or remove mainframe activity.


The research found that while mainframes continue to be considered a critical piece of infrastructure for the modern business, it was surprisingly found to be an important element of modern technologies like AI and Blockchain. Enterprises are now taking a hybrid approach to their infrastructure, migrating some applications to the cloud while maintaining certain business-critical applications on-premises and on mainframes.

While traditional applications and workloads (ERP (48%), finance and accounting (45%), HR management (44%) and ECM (43%)) remain the mainstay of the mainframe, 25% of those surveyed stated that mobile sites and applications were being put into the mainframe; 27% were running new blockchain initiatives and containerized applications.

According to Forrester Consulting, "Mainframes have long hosted mission-critical business as applications like finance and accounting applications and enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications. This remains a constant today with more than 40% of companies with mainframes still running these workloads from the mainframe. However, more than a quarter of firms see the mainframe as a place to run emerging workloads like blockchain and containerized applications. These benefit from integrated security and massive parallelization."

"We believe this research challenges popular opinion that mainframe is for legacy," said Brian Klingbeil, Executive Vice President, Technology and Strategy at Ensono. "Everything that made mainframe great in the past – security, reliability, versatility, performance – is still true today, and the latest generation of mainframe technology will now run the same cutting-edge applications and services as cloud infrastructure. Mainframe modernization is giving enterprises not only the ability to continue to run their legacy applications, but also allows them to embrace new technologies such as containerized microservices, blockchain and mobile applications."

"Organizations don't modernize in a vacuum. The research supports what we see in our work with clients where many larger organizations are settling on a hybrid best-of-breed approach, allowing their IT decision makers to use the infrastructure that best suits their project," added Klingbeil.

Kiran Desai, Senior Vice President and Global Head, Cloud and Infrastructure Services, Wipro Limited said, "Mainframe modernization is central to a long-term holistic hybrid IT strategy for enterprises leveraging mainframes. This research provides two very apt strategies for enterprises that allow them to take full advantage of mainframes – the first being to refactor applications to take advantage of cloud; and the second, to modernize mainframes by adopting DevOps. The research also shows that more than a quarter of firms see mainframes running emerging workloads like blockchain and containerized applications. We believe modern mainframes will have a significant role to play in the hybrid future of infrastructure. We are confident that Ensono's decades of hosting and managed-mainframe experience, coupled with Wipro's deep expertise in mainframe applications support, cloud migrations and DevOps will help deliver improved services with increased efficiencies to clients."

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