If you just finished university with a degree in Computer Sciences, you are probably looking for a job… and if you are reading this article, you are probably still searching. Although you might not even know what a Mainframe is, you might want to consider a career on the “big iron”; and here is why.
The mainframe is a 40+ years old platform and most software are written in low-level languages such as assembler or Cobol. Granted. As much as it appears non-attractive, it is a real opportunity: while most of the world data and processing resides in Mainframes, Mainframe professionals (so called “Mainframers”) are close to retirement. The equation is simple, IT talents with such knowledge will be rarity in the very near future, and biggest fortune companies will crave for them.
But … do not think mainframe is solely legacy. In fact, lots of new projects exist on Mainframe, most of which use Java, C, or C++. The new trend of “virtualization” is a notion which exists since decades in the Mainframe world. If you think about it, Mainframe systems are nothing else than a private cloud: Mainframe means enormous amount of data, incredible processing capabilities, and very high security (who even ever spoke about a virus on Mainframe?). Mainframe also rimes with green computing, since it uses much less energy than other platforms, because 1 Mainframe can support a workload equivalent to thousands of distributed servers.
In a few words, it is cool to work on Mainframe!