25th November 2019: Mainframes are critical to the success of so many organizations, yet an aging workforce, persistent skills gap and increasing workloads are conspiring to put that success at risk. The RSM Partners Mainframer in Training (MIT) program mitigates those risks, helping organizations to plan, deliver and manage the mainframe services they depend on. "Our goal is to help fix the demographics issue and create the biggest mainframe talent pool available for hire", says Jennie Holpin, Director, RSM Partners.
"RSM Partners recently attended the GSE UK annual conference, the UK's only major mainframe event, and a great place to meet and mix with people from right across the industry. There was a real buzz around the younger generation who are increasingly drawn to the mainframe. So many people wanted to talk to me about RSM's support for training and specifically MIT. It's a great opportunity for the next generation of mainframers to learn their craft, and very good news for all the companies we know are struggling with mainframe headcount and capability."
Grow your own mainframe talent in-house
RSM formalized its Mainframer in Training (MIT) approach in 2016 to help ease the skills shortage and develop new mainframe practitioners. "Organizations can grow their own talent in-house through an intensive learning experience that delivers well-rounded mainframers, able to quickly take up roles in their in-house teams," Jennie says.
MIT graduates receive a genuine qualification after undergoing formal training and mentoring by RSM consultants, actively helping RSM client organizations to achieve their goals while building a career. As one Mainframe Services Manager put it, "Our future mainframe service is reliant on the MIT program. When our mainframe engineers near retirement, we will expand the service sourced from RSM."
Several RSM clients are already engaged with the MIT program. This includes a leading international banking group, with trainee mainframers working on active projects under supervision. With the world of contractors undergoing changes, particularly with IR35 legislation coming into force in 2020, such organizations have yet another reason to focus on developing their skills and capability in-house, building long-term resilience into their mainframe operations.
To help foster a continuous flow of talent, RSM is also working with universities to link MIT recruitment with their careers cycles and providing targeted support. Ricki West is a Junior z/OS Consultant at RSM Partners who joined MIT from the University of Wolverhampton in July 2019. "I like the idea of mainframes: solid, old school, hard coding: what I'd call proper computing. I'm really interested in that solid coding, backroom programming. It's difficult enough to find a job, so you need an edge. I think mainframe skills and knowledge give you that edge. I'm very much enjoying the MIT program. The mentoring has been great. RSM really likes to invest in its people."
For more information on the MIT program click here or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Technical training: core fundamentals year 1 including z/OS, Db2, CICS, security, storage, networking, operations and specializations in years 2 and 3 that are integrated with real-life client requirements.
RSM Mainframe Boot Camps that replicate real-world environments, projects and deliverables.
Mentoring, advice and skillset support from RSM mainframe experts.
Hands-on project work and supervised systems access.
'Soft skills' training including effective communications, customer service, presentation skills, ITIL processes and PRINCE2 project management.
Networking opportunities, conferences and events.
Mainframe Technology Professional MTP exams - 'the mainframe standard' - and IBM certification.
Continuing Professional Development CPD support.