In the traditional domain of IBM mainframe systems – data processing in banks and insurance companies, public administrations, and other large organizations – a change can also be observed with regard to the selected operating platforms, driven by many business requirements in the context of digital business. For example, BHF-BANK, another leading financial service provider, also decided to completely change its operating platform in the course of introducing a new core banking system.
Pure IT landscapes based on a technology stack (e.g., from IBM, Microsoft or based on Unix/Linux) are no longer necessarily the rule. Most classic host customers now work with a hybrid infrastructure, consisting, for example, of in-house developed programs on the host on the one hand and server-based applications on other systems. BHF-BANK is going one step further and is currently migrating completely to a new, server-based operating system platform. This was triggered by the decision for a new core banking system based on Unix/Linux.
This is a correspondingly extensive migration project, as part of which the products used for scheduling, output management, and print distribution also have to be set up on the new platform. The migration to the new scheduling system alone requires an effort of around four person-years. Beta Systems Professional Services is providing BHF-BANK with significant support in this process. The switch is scheduled to be completed before the end of 2015. Modern, standardized core banking software instead of proprietary, host-based programs – this is currently a core element of the modernization strategy not only of BHF, but of several larger banks.
The reason for this is that it reduces the cost of system operation and maintenance, enables new business processes to be implemented faster, and makes it easier to meet increased legal requirements. This is because today’s financial service providers are subject to ever stricter regulations in the course of internal and external compliance. Meeting the new requirements with in-house developed host applications therefore often means a great deal of effort for a bank without any direct customer benefit.
With a modern Unix-based system such as Avaloq, which BHF-BANK has been implementing since the beginning of 2015, it is in a much better position in terms of compliance, transpa-rency, and traceability of business transactions.
In the traditional domain of IBM mainframe systems – data processing in banks and insurance companies, public administrations, and other large organizations – a change can also be observed with regard to the chosen operating platforms, driven by many business requirements in the context of digital business. BHF-BANK, another leading financial services provider also opted for a complete migration of its operating platform in the course of introducing a new core banking system.
Implementation of Beta UX Suite at the BHF-Bank
BHF-Bank Beta UX Suite: A technology change of this dimension automatically determines the choice of the operating platform. Beta Systems has adapted to this and, in addition to its traditional host-based products, now offers software tools for scheduling, job log, and output management as well as archiving in the Unix environment in its Beta UX Suite. These enable companies willing to switch to a new system to make a smooth transition.
BHF-BANK is a good example of this. For almost twenty years, it has been using an extensive portfolio of Beta Systems products from Beta for the management of its host-based IT processes. It is now implementing the transition to the new world with the Beta Systems Professional Services team. In many projects, this team has developed its own standardized procedure with checklists and tools to successfully implement migrations in the areas of scheduling & batch processing, log management, output management, and document archiving.
The overture of the project at BHF-BANK was – even before the introduction of the new core banking application and the replacement of the z/OS platform – the replacement of the previous document archive with Beta UX ContentMaster. The old system had been in use since 1994 and had not been further developed by the manufacturer for some time. With the decentralized Beta UX ContentMaster solution, Beta Systems provides a future-proof solution for the legally compliant archiving of a wide range of document types such as account statements, securities notifications, forms, and also scanned incoming documents such as remittance slips.
It is now being used intensively by BHF-BANK. A total of around 80 million documents have been transferred to the new archive system. Beta UX LogMaster and Beta UX Distribution-Master are two additional tools for job log management and output management. They seamlessly continue the tasks previously performed by Beta 92 and 93 in the Unix environment. Due to the good experience with Beta Systems in the past, BHF-BANK decided to use them in the future to ensure a seamless transition.
Beta UX LogMaster offers functions for automatic log processing, indexing and analysis, automatic reaction to results in the log, audit-proof archiving in the original format, company-wide provision via web browser, and much more. It ensures the verification and archiving of job and process logs at the hardware, operating system, and application level, thus enabling seamless documentation and evaluation of business processes for process optimization and compliance with internal GRC standards such as legal regulations.
The switch to the Beta UX DistributionMaster also represents a huge leap in quality in the area of output management. While its predecessor under z/OS was essentially a kind of “print distributor” – output documents were received and the respective distribution channel (print, archive…) was decided – BHF-BANK can now use a stored logic for dispatch control. The documents are read out and assigned based on criteria. Beyond the previous standard distribution, Beta Systems adapts the output management functions to individual customers through customizing.
Concrete advantages for the bank customer include: He no longer receives five different mailings via bundling, but only one collected mailing or conveniently via PDF and e-mail. Parallel to the introduction of the new job log and output management system, the scheduling system for the core banking system also had to be redesigned. In the past, BHF-BANK used a z/OS-based scheduler to control core banking processes on the mainframe. The batch processes stored there had to be transferred to a new, decentralized scheduling system outside the mainframe in the course of migration. “Such a migration requires the most precise planning, taking into account the subsequent operating concept,” explains Nikolaus Merz from BHF-BANK’s IT production planning department, “First, an outline must be drawn up of which applications will continue to exist in the future Unix environment and which should no longer be continued.”
Then, the processes must be pulled out of the legacy scheduler in an automated fashion. For this step, the bank used the XINFO IT information system from HORIZONT GmbH.
BHF-Bank Beta UX Suite: A technology change of this dimension automatically determines the choice of the operating platform. Beta Systems has adapted to this and today, in addition to its traditional mainframe-based products, also offers software solutions for scheduling, job log, and output management as well as archiving in the Unix environment in its Beta UX Suite.
As part of the migration, we worked together with our partners for workload automation, arvato Systems. The Beta UX Suite – consisting of its components ContentMaster, Distribu-tionMaster, and LogMaster – ensures a seamless transition to the Unix environment. This suite is complemented by the Streamworks job scheduling solution from arvato Systems, which paves the way from pure scheduling to workload automation.