4 Sep / 2016

Taking Your Chances in Mainframe Computing? – Read this First

Ah, the old, reliable, and ever-present mainframe computer. A mainstay in banking, utility, and insurance conglomerates.

Despite many attempts to unseat it from its kingly position in these industries, the mainframe is still standing even after over 50 years.

But it takes a special breed of programmer or IT professional to work, to thrive, and to be successful in the field of mainframe computing.

Men AviatorThat said, if you’ve been a mainframe lifer, you deserve to get some remodeling on your house done or plan your dream vacation; hope you’ve gotten that Jamaica trip sorted out in your Tommy Bahamas and your best shades – take a look at this selection of sunglasses from all brands to complete the look and finally get that tan that’s eluded you ever since working in IT. You deserve it.

On a more serious level however, let’s take a look at the mainframe computing career choice rationally.

Mainframe Computing as a Career Choice

Mainframe programmers and operators have relatively stable jobs. Just ask your uncle who has worked with a Fortune 500 banking company for the past 30-odd years; he’s probably being paid very well and he’s probably given great benefits. As interest in mainframe as a career choice is slowly dwindling down, and as those who developed its programs are starting to retire, mainframe computing can be considered to be a niche field in IT that will always have a demand in the market, despite there being a limited number of jobs in it.

If you’re already in the field, chances are you’re being paid somewhere around USD92,000 a month in the United States, with great benefits; with plenty of time for vacation and a relatively stable career path, if not as exciting.

Not bad at all, isn’t it? By the time large-scale job cuts have happened, you will hopefully have had long tenure, and great severance (if you must expect the worst).

The Question of Obsolescence

The rise of new technologies have always threatened the existence of mainframe since time immemorial. Though cloud computing and large-scale migration to other technologies such as Hadoop or Java have been the norm for more and more companies, the slide into obsolescence that’s been foreseen for so long by many experts in computing won’t happen overnight, until at least these new technologies can be as effective as mainframe is in processing large amounts of information. Mainframe does extremely well for the limited scope that it can do, but IBM has continued and will continue to do its research and development in the technology, and will look to incorporate newer technologies into the system itself.

Mainframe Will Continue On

There is a reason why mainframe computing has existed and will continue to thrive in the future, despite continuing research and devel