Sunday, 29 September 2013

BMC Software’s mainframe user survey

BMC Software, which recently lost a $13 million tax dispute with the US Internal Revenue Service, and which has recently ended its privatization process, has just published the results of its mainframe user survey.

On 25 September, BMC Software released the findings of its 8th Annual Worldwide Survey of Mainframe Users, which revealed that even though Cloud technology is on the march, a majority of companies are planted firmly on the ground with the mainframe.

The survey of nearly 1,300 mainframe users found that that mainframe technology will continue to play a critical role in delivering crucial computing power and take on an increasingly important role in today’s enterprise IT environments. So, that’s got to be good news and the kind of thing that mainframe users like to hear.

Other highlights were:
  • 93 percent of respondents consider the mainframe to be a long-term business solution, although just half of all respondents thought it will attract new workloads.
  • 85 percent said that keeping IT costs down is their top priority, which is an increase from 69 percent in 2012.
  • 76 percent of large shops expect MIPS capacity to grow as they modernize and add applications to address business needs. BMC suggests that this highlights the need for software that exploits specialty engines. I wonder whether they had any products in mind!
  • Perhaps not surprisingly, 75 percent of respondents are concerned about the shortage of skilled mainframe staff. Again, BMC concludes that this makes the need for automated, self-learning software greater than ever. If only there were products out there that could do that!
  • 46 percent of mainframe budgets are spent on software.
  • 66 percent of respondents said availability is a top priority, but 40 percent reported unplanned outage.
  • 66 percent said that mainframe will be incorporated into their Big Data or Cloud strategies.

Jonathan Adams, general manager of data management at BMC Software said: “The unprecedented pace of technology evolution and the consumerization trend only solidify the need for a platform with superior availability, security, and performance capabilities.”
The full results of BMC Software’s Mainframe Survey can be found at:

Just for completeness, the private investor group is collectively known as the Investor Group, and is led by Bain Capital and Golden Gate Capital together with Insight Venture Partners, GIC Special Investments, and Elliott Management.

And that US Tax Court decision stems from 2004’s corporate income tax repatriation holiday. The Court said BMC owes taxes on a portion of its foreign profits brought into the United States under the 2004 tax break, which allowed multinational US companies to bring foreign profits into the US at a 5.25 percent tax rate, rather than the then current 35 percent rate.

Going back to surveys – if you want to have your say about what’s happening on your mainframe, I have some good news. The Arcati Mainframe Yearbook 2014 will be inviting mainframe users to complete its survey towards the end of October.

For vendors, as usual, there will be opportunities to advertise or sponsor the Yearbook. More information will be coming soon.

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