Addressing IT Talent Shortage with IBM Power and IBM i Managed Services

Is your business stuck in the IT talent drain? Don't worry, you're not alone. While recent tech industry layoffs dominate the headlines, a quiet crisis is brewing – a lack of skilled professionals to manage critical IBM Power Systems. This aging workforce issue threatens to cripple business continuity and hinder infrastructure improvements.

The good news is that managed services with expertise in IBM Power Systems can address the skill shortage by providing the necessary support and expertise. Additionally, migrating to cloud-based IBM Power Systems offerings can reduce reliance on in-house staff for maintenance and updates.

Read on to discover:

  • The details on the IBM Power and IBM i experts shortage
  • Managed services and cloud migration as potential solutions
  • Benefits of managed services and cloud migration
  • Ways to combine managed services with cloud migration

The IBM Power and IBM i Workforce Shortage

IBM Power Systems are high-performance servers that run the IBM i operating system, a reliable and secure platform trusted by enterprises for business-critical applications like finance, inventory, and customer data.

However, there's a significant shortage of IBM experts due to a few reasons:

  • An aging workforce: Many experienced IBM i professionals are nearing retirement, reducing the available talent pool.
  • Lack of awareness: IBM i isn't always at the forefront of discussions around IT careers, so there's a smaller group of younger people actively seeking out these skills.
  • Perceived complexity: IBM i systems can have a reputation for being complex, which can deter potential candidates.

According to Fortra, 65% of respondents listed IBM i skills as a top concern in 2024. This lack of qualified young professionals threatens business continuity. Critical knowledge and expertise in maintaining these reliable systems, essential for core business operations like finance and inventory, are at risk of disappearing. Without fresh talent, innovation and adaptation become major hurdles, potentially hindering a company's ability to stay competitive. Fortunately, solutions exist to bridge this talent gap and ensure the continued success of your IBM Power/IBM i environment.

Managed Services: How They Bridge the Skill Gap

IBM i managed services refer to outsourcing the care and maintenance of critical business platforms. Imagine a team of IBM experts – not on your payroll, but readily available – handling everything from system monitoring and security to performance optimization and patching. Managed service providers (MSPs) with expertise in IBM i take the burden off your internal IT team while ensuring your IBM Power/IBM i infrastructure runs securely.

3 Main Benefits of IBM Power Managed Services for Businesses with IT Talent Shortage

  1. Access to Specialized Skills and Expertise: MSPs employ a pool of experts, giving you instant access to the skills and knowledge you might lack in-house. They stay up-to-date on the latest IBM i technologies and best practices, ensuring your systems are optimized and secure.
  2. Continuity of Operations and Support: Managed services offer round-the-clock monitoring and support. MSPs proactively identify and address potential issues before they become major disruptions, minimizing downtime and ensuring your business operations run smoothly.
  3. Cost-Effectiveness Compared to Maintaining an In-House Team: Hiring and building a dedicated IBM i team from the ground up can be expensive. Managed services provide a cost-effective alternative. You pay a predictable monthly fee for comprehensive support, eliminating the need for salaries, benefits, and ongoing training costs for internal IT staff.

To learn more about managed services, get your copy of our comprehensive white paper that and embrace digitization in your company with managed services.

Advantages of IBM Power in Comparison to x86

While x86 servers are generally cheaper upfront, IBM Power Systems offer several advantages for businesses with demanding workloads:

  • Higher Performance: Power Systems are built for heavy lifting, often boasting better processing power and memory bandwidth compared to x86 systems. This translates to faster data processing and application performance.
  • Enhanced Reliability: Power Systems are known for their robust design and superior uptime, minimizing the risk of crashes and disruptions critical for business-crucial applications.
  • Scalability: Power Systems can easily scale up or down to meet changing business needs. This allows for efficient resource allocation and avoids the need for sprawling x86 server farms.
  • Security: Power Systems prioritize security features like built-in encryption and hardware partitioning, offering a more secure environment for sensitive data.

In essence, IBM Power Systems trade some initial cost for significant gains in performance, reliability, scalability, and security – factors that become crucial for businesses relying on large-scale data processing and mission-critical applications.

Cloud Migration: Addressing IT Worker Shortage and Modernization

IBM i cloud services offer another compelling solution to the IBM expert shortage. By moving workloads to a secure cloud environment, companies gain on-demand scalability, potentially lower costs, and access to advanced disaster recovery options. This option allows your internal team to focus on strategic initiatives while guaranteeing the smooth operation of your mission-critical IBM Power applications.

3 Main Benefits of Cloud Migration for Companies with Skill Shortages

  1. Scale on Demand: Cloud lets you flex your IBM Power infrastructure up or down as needed, adapting to business changes without hardware limitations.
  2. Boost Security & Compliance: Cloud providers offer advanced security features and compliance expertise, potentially exceeding your on-premises capabilities.
  3. Modernize with Ease: Cloud unlocks access to cutting-edge tools and technologies to integrate with your IBM Power apps, driving innovation and optimization.

Successful cloud migration for IBM Power/IBM i systems requires meticulous planning, from assessing workload compatibility to crafting a secure migration strategy. To prepare for this transition, download our white paper and accelerate your cloud migration journey.

The Power of Combining Managed Services with Cloud Migration

The best move to address the IBM Power Systems IT workers shortage isn't limited to just one solution – it's a strategic combination. By leveraging both IBM i management services and cloud migration, you can achieve comprehensive support for your existing infrastructure while opening doors to modernization opportunities.

To effectively address concerns about managed services or cloud migration, prioritize clear communication around security, detailed cost analysis, and SLA negotiations. However, even with managed services and cloud technology, it's still important to continuously learn and upskill your workforce to keep pace with technological advancements.

Entrepreneurs today face a double-edged sword: the need for reliable, high-performance IT infrastructure and the challenge of a shrinking pool of qualified IT professionals. The IBM Power Cloud offers a compelling solution. By migrating data to secure IBM infrastructure built on IBM Power Systems, businesses can leverage the combined benefits of robust technology and reduced reliance on internal IT staff. This frees them to focus on core business activities and innovation, ensuring their operations remain uninterrupted.

Key Takeaways

  • The talent gap in the IBM Power/IBM i space is a growing concern. Without a skilled workforce to manage these critical systems, businesses risk disruptions, hindered innovation, and potential security vulnerabilities.
  • The solution is clear: by combining managed services with cloud migration, you can address the workforce shortage while ensuring continued optimal performance and opening doors to modernization. The time to act is now – secure your IBM Power/IBM i environment for the future.

Explore how Comarch's proven managed services and cloud migration expertise can help your business navigate this challenge. Contact us today to discuss your specific needs and unlock the full potential of your IBM Power/IBM i systems.

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