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Modernization: Unlocking the Full Value of Applications and User Experiences

May 11, 2023

Mainframe and midrange computer applications are responsible for critical business tasks, from order processing to tracking customer information to checking inventory, to name a few. When it comes to modernization, it’s not about simply updating the entire stack of applications. Legacy applications often find themselves at odds with today’s business needs, leaving little or no means to unlock their full potential for web and mobile use

Faced with a challenge that can hinder your overarching modernization goals, what can your business do to spot and build the right integration points that allow them to tap into that hidden value and generate end-to-end visibility? A recent white paper from Microsoft found that incorporating cloud services, powered by the right software solutions, can help gather the required data in order to better inform, execute and accelerate a personalized modernization journey and drive business success.

Accelerating API Development Through Cloud

Connecting legacy applications to cloud services can help ease the complexity of modernizing the entire stack of applications. Businesses use many applications, with a wide range of uses, processes and workflows. With the right solutions, businesses can take what would otherwise be a screen-based function and easily convert that into an API. Converting these systems into APIs means businesses gain far greater insight into the most important workflows that exist in their IT infrastructure, gaining the visibility needed to drastically reduce the amount of time spent working on development. With this approach, businesses can combat the challenges of legacy applications, navigating the complexities of underlying RPG and COBOL, and creating and delivering APIs in the form of easily accessible web services.

Microsoft Power Apps and Rocket Software’s Suite of Modernization Solutions Unlock New Potential

Both Microsoft and Rocket Software offer software solutions that are tailor-made to support businesses throughout every stage of their modernization efforts. The Microsoft Power Platform, and particularly Power Apps, give businesses much needed customizability, enabling them to access a low code development environment to build applications that suit their exact needs and goals. With Power Apps, users gain access to a highly scalable data service and application platform that makes it easy to integrate and interact with their preexisting data.

Coupled with Microsoft’s Power Platform, Rocket Software’s Suite of Modernization Solutions are at your disposal and ready to help. Among these tools, the white paper highlights the products that were specifically developed to have an immediate and reliable impact in the planning and execution of your modernization plan. These are:

  • Rocket® Process Insights – A visual tool that lets you see your workflows in totality, providing the information you need to build a smart modernization plan. It tracks how your organization engages with the data and business logic of your IBM® i (or IBM zSystems®) and provides you with clear visibility into every green-screen data process, creating an invaluable blueprint into critical workflows/business processes and navigation. Rocket Process Insights helps you build a data-driven strategy or review your current plan so you can eliminate redundancy and wasted time within your workflows. Rocket Process Insights doesn’t require any RPG expertise—simply let it run and securely collect data in the background of your day-to-day operations.
  • Rocket® API – enables developers to create application APIs from host-based applications—without requiring modifications to the underlying source. Built-in intelligence ensures that codebase changes do not break the connection between your APIs and the applications that call them. It delivers quick and significant ROI from automating your IBM i (or IBM zSystems®) processes. Using Rocket API, you can turn your proven, host-based systems into modern API-enabled platforms utilizing SOAP or RESTful services, making integrating core business functionality into web or mobile experiences easy. Rocket API fits into any current application infrastructure using a low-code model—eliminating the need to write new application code. It deploys to any local, cloud, or hybrid environment. 
  • Rocket® Modern Experience – facilitates building modern user experiences for your mainframe and iSeries applications without relying on developers with COBOL or RPG programming expertise. It enhances your employees’ and customers’ web and mobile experiences while increasing productivity. It improves user and customer workflow by combining multi-screens into a single page view. It also offers new functionality to employees by leveraging third-party APIs like zip code validation, Google Maps integration, and others. Rocket Modern Experience successfully upgrades traditional green screens with modern UIs that are much more intuitive and user-friendly.

Balancing the need for legacy systems with broader modernization plans is a serious challenge. With the solutions and partners, that Microsoft and Rocket Software offer, businesses will ensure they are building a data-driven modernization plan that maximizes the value of existing systems and unlocks new functionality and insights that will give them an edge over the competition.

Check out the full white paper to learn more. Ready to modernize your application stack? Find out how Rocket Software can help.