10 Things You Should Know Before You Hire An IBM i Modernization Company

Posted by Abel Willium on June 23rd, 2022

AS400 is one of the most influential inventions of the 80s.

This alone disrupted the procedures that businesses relied on for an innumerable amount of time and forever changed the dimensions of the data operations!

We are discussing this in 2022, looking at the most powerful technology that helped businesses thrive and still continues to do so.

Agreed, the resource pool is shirking and customizations to support the modern methodologies are hard-hitting. But, with a great legacy, the faith instilled in AS400 stays forever.

Yes, AS400 is a classic possession that has been delivering beyond the bounds. With time, users are finding it a bit more expensive to run mission-critical tasks on AS400 systems.

This acted as a sign, an indication, a call for AS400 migration.

AS400 iSeries migration is a dreadful task in itself and that goes without saying!

All would agree that replacing the best is difficult and when you have a specific time-bound period to yield critical results with those high stake investments, it’s better to rethink every step you commit.

The real challenge isn’t the AS400 migration, it’s finding the right IBM i modernization company, a sailor who can sail you to the shore.

Let’s understand a set of pre-requisites you should be careful of before hiring an IBM i modernization partner.

10 Pre-requisites for a Successful AS400 Migration Journey

 1. Knowledge of the Application

 I know this goes without saying but still has to be the first point while undergoing AS400 migration. You should agree that iSeries migration or modernization isn’t a small step, it demands preparation to a promising extent.

 The team who is going to handle it for you should be well-versed with the acute and comprehensive knowledge of the AS400 system components.

Before you sign in with an IBM i modernization company as a partner, you must vouch for the expertise they claim to have.

2. Aligning the requirements with the Expected ROI:

Why would you invest in iSeries migration if you don’t see a visible ROI of it? To ensure a successful alignment of the requirements and the expected ROI of it, it’s of vital importance that the business team performs a deep pre and post-ROI analysis.

3. Data Clean-Up:

Why would you want the redundant and replicated data to eat up space in the new system, post AS400 migration?

Consider running a quality check and getting rid of it.

This might sound a little cliche, but trust me, in the long run, this will help you ensure the optimal health of your data and data repository.

 4. Manage third-party Integrations:

Since you used the current AS400 systems for a longer period of time, it's mandatory to check the third-party integrations done with the system.

Starting afresh, you must get on the right terms with the IBM i modernization company to plan the integration in a seamless manner, so that it doesn’t create any obstructions in the operations.   

5. Protect Sensitive Data:

Data security is of utmost priority for any type of system migration, in our case AS400 migration.

Encrypting sensitive data ensures security and acts as a sigh of relief for both the parties, you and the IBM i modernization company.

 6. Document Everything:

When it’s documented on paper, both the parties have a road map to refer to.  System documentation wasn’t an integral aspect of the original Software Development Life Cycle, for the AS400 systems.

Now, starting afresh with AS400 migration, documenting each finer detail should be mandatory to avoid hiccups in the future.

7. Understanding the User Compatibility:

Would you consider yourself qualified enough to fly a plane with a four-wheeler driving license? Crazy enough, right?

Then how not considering the end-user compatibility before the AS400 migration is going to add up to your purpose?

It’s important for you and the IBM i modernization company to understand the user compatibility as well as the issues with the current system. This alone would make it a lot easier for the end-user and they would of course thank you for making their lives easy

8. Risk Analysis & Mitigation:

Associating with the right IBM i modernization company, can put you to greater advantage, especially in this department.

Having been there and done that your AS400 migration partner knows how deep can the risks be and the way back up too!

In a trivial case, even if something gets messed up, an expert never denies taking the ownership and acts with integrity.

With AS400 systems, security-related and architecture-related vulnerabilities are the most crucial ones, and when you work with an expert team of professionals, there is always a preventive effort instead of a curative one!

9. Consult before your start building:

AS400 migration is a big game. You are well aware of the costs that are going to be incurred in turning the rock upside down.

Before roping in an IBM i modernization company as a development partner, why not consider investing in a consultation.

Before you go all-in for an AS400 migration, consider availing a consultant who can help you chalk down different routes to reach the outcome that you are looking for.

Options such as investing in a third-party solution or building for only specific modules can save you a considerable amount of effort and money.

Pause, and think before you build!

10. Always have a Backup:

You don’t want to be the tortoise who wishes to lose its protective shell to run faster, do you? 

When you finally decide on AS400 migration and initiate the application development with the IBM i modernization company, it’s a safe bet to keep your previous AS400 system running.

Agreed, you are building yourself a new application, but are you sure that it would work just fine from day one? Let it settle.

Have your own back with the AS400 system back up, at least till the new system is up and running.


AS400 migration is a rock-solid move and you are going to need expert IT minds to execute it for you. Data and Infrastructure are the real assets in this migration journey, think well before you let anyone take their hands onto your system.

These 10 pre-requisites act as a footprint to your migration journey with your IBM i modernization partner. Make sure you help them understand your requirements well and be sure that they build you what you are looking for.

Integrative Systems is IBMs Silver Business Partner and has been providing seamless iSeries Development services for over 20+ years now. If you are looking for an IBM i modernization company for your project, drop us a line at contact@integrativesystems.com and we would be more than happy to help you.

Like it? Share it!

Abel Willium

About the Author

Abel Willium
Joined: February 25th, 2021
Articles Posted: 34

More by this author