Case Studies

Forecross has conducted successful IDMS legacy modernization projects for clients all over the world, in a variety of industries including financial services, public utilities (telephone, gas, electric power), higher education and government.

Because the majority of our customers during the past decade have been outside the United States, our global support is a key component of both our technology and our client services.

Forecross has successfully completed more IDMS legacy modernization projects than any other vendor. Below are links to a number of case studies illustrating the scope of projects Forecross has successfully completed.

  1. Manulife Financial Corporation, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
  2. UK divison of global financial services firm, London, England
  3. Government agency providing Financial Services - Quebec, Canada
  4. Accenture Belgium on behalf of National Bank of Belgium, Brussels, Belgium
  5. IBM Corporation on behalf of New Jersey Administrative Office of the Courts, Trenton, New Jersey
  6. European Patent Office, Netherlands
  7. University of California at San Diego, San Diego, California
  8. Brown Brothers Harriman & Company

Manulife Financial Corporation, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Goals
Address concerns with IBM outsourcing maintenance costs, particularly those related to IDMS, and ensure ability to maintain and enhance the applications going forward despite the last in-house IDMS resource retiring.

Alternatives Considered
Due to the extensive use of IDMS, encapsulation ('wrapping') or other techniques for adding new functionality were not considered appropriate or cost-effective.

Metrics
4 applications consisting of 200 ADSO dialogs, 75 IDMS-DC online programs, and 450 IDMS-DB batch programs plus 4 schemas with 87 record types converted to COBOL/CICS/DB2; also handled expansion of group# field in > 3,000 programs.

Benefits
Eliminated dependence, costs and risks associated with IDMS, streamlined service level agreements with IBM for outsourcing, and allowed the Group Benefits division to grow its business exponentially without facing a limit in the number of unique group numbers the database and applications could handle.

UK divison of global financial services firm, London, England

Goals
Ensure compliance with business and regulatory demands to maintain access to historical data from an application that was being replaced with a new, more relevant packaged solution. Also, to archive the critical client, policy and risk data in a SQL format that would allow it to support sophisticated information retrieval by staff, processes and tools with no ongoing knowledge or dependence on CA-IDMS.

Alternatives Considered
Unloading the IDMS data and dumping it into Oracle using brute force utilities and deferring the task of addressing any future access and understandability issues until the need arose.

Metrics
This CA-IDMS database consisted of approximately 250 unique record types and 500 million rows of data.

Benefits
Retire the old IDMS application while creating a valuable reference database that can reliably and accurately provide historical data on demand. Continue toward eliminating all dependence on scarce CA-IDMS knowledge.

Government agency providing Financial Services - Quebec, Canada

Goals
Achieve all goals set out in 10 year IT modernization plan including integrating current applications into the new architecture and frameworks already developed in their .NET server environments.

Alternatives Considered
Re-develop the IDMS applications by hand in C# .NET

Metrics
2 applications consisting of over 8,000 IDMS components (ADSO dialogs, IDMS-DC online and IDMS-DB batch programs, plus 2 schemas with 750 record types). The targets for this effort were:

Outcome
The goal of migrating large, complex applications from IDMS to .NET using nearly 100% automation was proven.

The project timeline the client established was inadequate for them to fully integrate the resulting code (still procedural in structure), into a massive, pre-existing C# object-oriented framework. Other business constraints caused the client to put the project on hold until a more realistic timeline could be established within their overall 10 year plan.

Accenture Belgium on behalf of National Bank of Belgium, Brussels, Belgium

Goals
Retire the mainframe by moving all required functionality to Unix and achieve the corresponding cost savings.

Alternatives Considered
Given the compressed timeframe and deadline, automation was determined to be the best solution.

Metrics
2 systems comprised of 1048 ADSO dialogs and 16 IDMS-DC online programs, and 339 IDMS-DB batch programs were converted to COBOL/CICS/SQL on a Solaris (Unix) platform running Oracle relational DBMS.

Benefits
Benefits included:

IBM Corporation on behalf of New Jersey Administrative Office of the Courts, Trenton, New Jersey

Goals
Eliminate all CA products to significantly reduce operating costs and expose business functionality in non-proprietary language/DB environment to facilitate web-enablement.

Alternatives Considered
Custom-developed web interfaces

Metrics
3 applications consisting of 1060 ADSO dialogs, 88 IDMS-DC online programs, 1082 IDMS -DB batch programs, and 241 IDMS record types converted to COBOL/CICS/DB2.

Benefits
Benefits included:

European Patent Office, Netherlands

Goals
Meet increasing demands for more and better data storage, especially non-digital (image) data, and streamline IT operations by consolidating and eliminating redundant technologies.

Alternatives Considered
Other alternatives available at the time, including manually re-writing the application, replacing it with a package, re-designing and developing a new application, did not apply.

Metrics
One application comprised of 35 ADSO dialogs, 40 IDMS-DC online programs, 210 IDMS-DB batch programs, and a 36 record type schema converted to COBOL/CICS/DB2.

Benefits
Enhanced performance of the document management application and elimination of reliance on dwindling number of IDMS-knowledgeable IT resources for future maintenance and enhancements.

University of California at San Diego, San Diego, California

Goals
Consolidate Student Information and Financial systems onto relational, portable platforms to reduce cost and increase responsiveness. Also attract and retain knowledgeable IT professionals to ensure continuity.

Alternatives Considered
Acquisition of a package from third party vendor or systems from another University

Metrics
3 applications consisting of 1,468 ADSO dialogs, 51 IDMS-DC online programs, 615 IDMS-DB batch programs, and 839 IDMS record types converted to COBOL/CICS/DB2.

Benefits
The benefits included:

Brown Brothers Harriman & Company

Goals
The goals included 24 x 7 operation, solving problems caused by poor performance, and providing fast and easy access to data

Alternatives Considered
None of the other alternatives available at the time applied. These included manually re-writing the core applications, replacing them with packages, and re-designing/developing new applications.

Metrics
12 applications consisting of 512 ADSO dialogs, 452 IDMS-DC online programs, 1,130 IDMS-DB batch programs, 549 CICS/COBOL programs and 241 IDMS record types plus more than 7 million lines of mainframe and AS/400 code renovated for Year 2000 compliance.

Benefits
Dual database I/O modules (IDMS and DB2) allowed production implementation to span more than 4 months - avoiding the risk of a 'big-bang' implementation.

All goals were not only achieved, but exceeded.

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