The Cost of Skipping Software Investments in IBM i Power Systems‬

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ibm i, as/400, power systems, software investments

I read something this week that struck a chord with me. “Many IT shops make bad decisions because they only look at the cost of doing, not the cost of not doing.”  Frank Rodegeb said that. Frank is an IT Management Consultant in IBM’s High Availability Center of Competency (HACoC). That’s a complicated title to tote around. But the messaging in his quote couldn’t be more simple and it can be applied to both large investments in infrastructure and services, and small investments, like software that maximizes and protects IBM Power System output. 

Here’s what companies might be putting at risk when over-focusing on cost and under-focusing on the consequences of delaying modest investments in efficiency and security software. 

Message Monitoring software for IBM i error messages 

Our high quality, fully supported error message monitoring system costs $3,000. If you are not sure it’s a worthy or high priority spend, ask these questions: 

  • Can your system afford to be down for an hour? How about half a day?
  • What is the business recovery cost of not realizing your AS/400 is near capacity and it shuts down. When a server exceeds capacity, it doesn’t quickly power back on.
  • The same holds true for power outages. When a server goes down, credit card transactions and other important customer data can be lost.
  • What about invoicing and payment? A hold-up in printing or emailing that could be easily noticed by message monitoring could put critical jobs in a back-log.
  • What is the cost of message monitoring software compared to the annual cost of a 24/7 IT employee monitoring green screens, including nights and weekends? 

Spool File Software 

For less than $5,000, you can purchase high quality spool file software that optimizes IBM i output. What is the cost of not optimizing output? 

  • Can your company budget support tens of thousands of dollars for printing, processing, and mailing reports?
  • What about the efficiency cost of not being able to put server output in user-friendly formats? 

Forms Software

For less than $5,000, high quality forms software gets your logo on professional looking forms and increases the effectiveness of your customer communications. What is the cost of continuing to use ugly (it had to be said) AFP forms?

  • Your communications look oddly out of date. Customers expect to see familiar colors and logos in their communications from a vendor. Using rudimentary forms makes you stand out…and not in a good way.
  • You continue to purchase highly expensive pre-printed forms 

Database query software

For less than $5,000, database query software creates an efficient method to mine the critical information necessary to keep your company running. What is the cost of staying status-quo? 

  • Inefficient workflow. When people complain that the “system” is SO slow, it’s usually because the database query process has not been optimized.
  • Stress on architecture. Your IBM Power Systems not only have a lot riding on them to power the day-to-day work flow, they have a lot riding IN them. Inefficient database queries often take numerous cycles to produce the desired information, putting unnecessary stress on your server. 

Deciding on budget priorities often involves heavy analysis of big ticket items, but it’s the small ticket items like software that can quickly elevate efficiency and professionalism and secure workflow for a modest investment that usually pays for itself in a matter of months. Stack that against a big investment in architecture that may be out of scale with current needs, and the cost of not doing, not making the small investment becomes very clear.  


Get up close and personal with our products. Sign up below for a free online demo of our SpoolFlex (Report Conversion and Distribution), FormFlex (Electronic Forms and MICR Checks), DBXFlex (Advanced Database Output Managment), MessageFlex (Message Monitoring and Notification), or ReportFlex (Report Re-Formatter).


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