Mainframe

PTA - Your reliable mainframe modernization partner

The mainframe, also known as the mainframe or host, is still used by many companies to operate their business-critical core applications in a highly available and stable manner. Reliability, scalability, compatibility and access protection have always been the key performance features of a host. Companies such as banks, insurance companies, retailers, energy suppliers and the public sector in particular are therefore still relying on the great strengths of the mainframe. Another is that it processes large volumes of data highly efficiently and securely. However, the use of these sometimes 40-year-old applications, which have grown individually and are therefore complex, is accompanied by quite complex challenges – keyword maintenance, care and application modernization.

In short supply: in-depth expertise in complex, evolved host environments

The support, maintenance and modernization of these host applications requires in-depth specialist and programming knowledge. Legacy applications are almost always an evolved mixture of programs, databases, interfaces, middleware and other components. In many cases, very complex IT infrastructures have developed over decades, consisting of countless sub-applications. These are mainly programmed in COBOL, a comparatively old programming language. This was developed back in the 1950s and is still widely used in host applications today. It is therefore hardly surprising that the required specialist knowledge and understanding of the intricacies of such hosts is rapidly declining, making it increasingly difficult to further develop or even modernize such applications at the required pace. This is due to both the loss of experienced and highly qualified IT experts in companies and the lack of qualified junior staff. However, many companies are still reluctant to migrate their business-critical host workloads to the cloud, for example, and replace their legacy systems in order to become more agile and customer-friendly. The risk of migration errors, very long migration periods and expected system downtimes, as well as the almost non-existent know-how about the old processes, is too great. All of these criteria can make such migration considerably more difficult and, in the worst case, even threaten the existence of the company. This is exactly where our experienced mainframe team comes into play and supports you as a competent modernization partner for your legacy systems. We support you in maintaining the functionality of your host infrastructure in the long term.

Always keep your host environment up to date and rely on our expert knowledge

We support you in the maintenance and further development of your application systems in the mainframe environment so that you can ensure the stable operation of your business-critical IT systems. Our experienced mainframe team is characterized by special and long-standing experience in the development and maintenance of systems and applications for IBM mainframes and comparable computer platforms. Our IT professionals are particularly well versed in the programming languages COBOL and PL/1, which were used in the programming of hosts at the time. Rely on our expert knowledge and compensate for the loss of long-standing employees and the lack of new talent. Together, we ensure that your hosts are always up to date and can also reliably meet new requirements.

Adapting hosts to legal and regulatory requirements - we know how

The topic of compliance is by no means unknown, especially in highly regulated sectors such as the financial industry, the insurance industry, the energy industry and the public sector. Constant change and the complexity of business transactions are increasingly presenting banks, insurers, energy suppliers and public authorities with the challenge of having to adapt their compliance structures and regulations in an agile and continuous manner. For companies that use complex, individualized host systems, this is a task that needs to be approached with care and experience.

It requires experienced programmers and IT experts who can specifically identify any risks and weak points in the host environment and modernize the necessary sub-applications, while always keeping an eye on the stability of the entire IT infrastructure. However, our experienced mainframe team is not just made up of programmers who know exactly what they are doing and can reliably maintain and service your mainframes. Our IT professionals speak fluent German throughout – a feature that can pay off for you in particular.

Our IT professionals are fluent in German

In view of the fact that the majority of program code written in the host environment was written by German developers around 40 years ago, we have experienced in numerous projects that the topic of “language” is a key success factor for really finding your way around highly complex program code. Close communication with the specialist departments about process and business workflows is also essential for us. In addition, legacy systems that have grown over decades rarely have consistent documentation, and in those subsystems where this is the case, variables, abbreviations and comments are written in German.

Companies that are convinced that nearshoring or offshoring is a more cost-effective way of achieving their goals can quickly reach their limits when it comes to the further development and maintenance of their mainframe computers: Quite simply because language barriers prevent them from fully grasping and understanding the source code. Rely on the many years of expertise of our IT professionals and reliably adapt your hosts to current requirements on the basis of our comprehensive IT and programming know-how. Our dedicated and highly motivated IT professionals work regionally independently and, if required, throughout Germany. This is made possible by our remote deployment.

Efficiently maintain or replace legacy systems

Around a quarter of German companies still use COBOL applications today. This is shown by the market analysis that we initiated together with Statista. The programming language, which was created in the early days of computer development at the end of the 1950s, is still used today primarily for commercial applications. However, this situation now poses major challenges for many IT managers: Maintaining such legacy systems is not only time-consuming and expensive.

Most companies no longer have the internal know-how to master this, let alone initiate modernization. Regardless of whether you are looking for specialists who can reliably support you in the maintenance and servicing of your legacy systems or provide you with advice and assistance when replacing old IT landscapes: Our consultants are not only proficient in old programming languages such as COBOL, but are also happy to advise you on the path to a new digital age.

Convince yourself of our wide-ranging expertise

So that you can convince yourself of the range of IT know-how and programming knowledge of our host experts, we present here a small excerpt from our project database of some of our mainframe projects:

Project ID: 5205

Premium adjustment and product support in health insurance

Project ID: 4102

Maintenance and further development of an actuarial application

Project ID: 5478

Maintenance and further development of a legacy application (host legacy, PL/1, C)

Project ID: 5477

Migration of a legacy application (host legacy, PL/1, C) to SAP

Project ID: 5776

Maintenance and further development of a legacy application

Project ID: 6111

Implementation of the life insurance interface to the digital pension overview

Have we sparked your interest?

Heinz Schäfer

Mainframe topic manager

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