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IT Modernization is at the Heart of Employee Retention

Mike Siemasz

February 28, 2024

Innovation is at the heart of what drives technology companies forward and delivers a competitive advantage in the broader marketplace. What makes that possible is the strong, dedicated group of tech talent within those organizations that is helping drive mission-critical initiatives forward to achieve key business goals and stand out from the crowd.

That top talent, though, is not always easy to attract. As new technologies emerge—whether it’s AI, cloud solutions or advanced analytics tools—the next generation of tech talent is eager to get their hands on it. With that reality comes a challenge. For businesses that rely on mission-critical systems like the mainframe for core operations, how can they make those roles appealing and fulfilling? The answer lies in modernization.

Shed the Misconceptions around Mainframe

There’s no understating just how important mainframe technology is to the business world. It’s what powers everything from the swipe of a credit card to booking a flight online to checking the balance on a bank account. Although it often holds a mission-critical role in organizations, IT and technology positions in the mainframe field don’t always garner the same appeal that comes from working and building applications with emerging capabilities like AI.

It’s a perception that simply couldn’t be any further from the truth. Part of what has made mainframe technology so successful, and such a mainstay in the business landscape, is how much innovation can be built on it. The caveat here is that an important piece of shaking that perception is prioritizing mainframe modernization initiatives. The benefits of modernization are well known—improved workflows, system optimization and enhanced data management capabilities—but what can’t be overstated is just how much of an impact it has on prospective employees. Improvements to aspects of an organization like DevOps, security, and application development all serve to make working at a given company more appealing.

Open Source is a Must-have

In any conversation around drawing in and empowering the next wave of tech talent, the role of open-source software tools is important. Traditionally, it’s something that would not be associated with a highly secure infrastructure setting like the mainframe. But with more businesses looking for ways to build applications more efficiently and bring them to market faster, open-source software delivers a unique set of capabilities to reach that goal.

With newer waves of IT and tech talent entering the workforce, there’s an expectation and desire to find roles working with the tools that they’re familiar with from their education. And for the next generation of talent, that means leaning into open-source software—for students coming out of universities today, open source has quickly become the default method of learning skills. The ability to take advantage of their preferred languages—from Git to Python to cURL—gives that new generation of developers the means to innovate and utilize the latest technological capabilities.

Today’s business world is flush with exciting new technologies and tools, whether that’s AI and advanced analytics or open-source software development. Ultimately, attracting the next generation of talent will require businesses to ensure that their own systems are keeping up with the pace of change and giving prospective employees a unique opportunity to contribute to something truly innovative.

Ready to tap into the next generation of tech talent? Learn more about how modernization can help achieve that goal.