iPost moves Pension and Benefits application to Open Source using COBOL-IT.









Pension and Benefits Assistance



COBOL-IT® Compiler Suite Enterprise Edition



Hewlett-Packard PA-RISC HP-UX



IBM Intel Leon X5470 3.33 GHz Linux Redhat



Micro Focus COBOL

iPost has transitioned its Pension and Benefits application from Micro Focus COBOL to COBOL-IT running on a Linux Server Cluster, reducing costs and enhancing their ability to maintain a high level of service.

“We were given a very ambitious directive to reduce costs by 60%, and deliver the solution on-time. By substituting COBOL-IT, we were able to exceed the goals, both in terms of time and money. Looking forward, the Customer can project lower costs with certainty. This was real win for all involved.”

Stefano Galletti, Project Manager at HTWC.

Cutting costs while continuing to provide critical functiona- lity.

iPost is an Italian Government Agency that provides pensions and benefits assistance to the staff of the Italian Post Office. Located in Rome, iPost employs over 150,000 people across Italy, and pro- vides a variety of financial services. The Pension and Benefits Assis- tance application, handling over €70M in transactions annually, is a mission-critical application, distributing pension checks and other benefits assistance to Italian Postal workers.

HTWC and COBOL-IT provided the best opportu- nity to reduce costs, while maintaining perfor- mance, reliability and interoperability

As is common in government agencies today, iPost was challen- ged to “do more with less”, to identify areas where costs could be cut, while continuing to maintain the critical functions upon which the Postal employees depend. The combination of HTWC and COBOL-IT, with COBOL-IT’s Open Source COBOL Compiler Suite provided the best opportunity to reduce costs, while maintaining key levels of performance, reliability, and interoperability, and was selected by iPost, iPost has been running this configuration, hosted on an IBM Server Cluster running Linux Redhat with drama- tic cost savings for over a year.

2000 programs compiled, and tested with XcicS, and ora- cle in 2 months.

iPost’s case is particularly interesting, in that they had already achieved cost savings from a migration to open systems, and were being challenged to save more. Pension benefit applica- tions must adapt continuously to implement new legislative rules, and must evolve, in order to be able to expand online services. These drivers impose costs for maintenance, quality assurance, and modernization projects, even as overall directives for cost- cutting are being ordered. The HTWC Project Manager identified significant opportunities for costs savings in proprietary licenses for the COBOL Compiler and Runtime, and proposed a solution that included a transition from Micro Focus COBOL to COBOL-IT, and from an HP-UX platform to a Linux platform, while continuing to use the Oracle 9i database.

In order to accomplish this task, 2000 COBOL programs had to be re-compiled, and tested with the Production system that consis- ted of HTWC’s XFRAME Suite of Products, notably XCICS, the COBOL-IT Compiler Suite Enterprise Edition, and Oracle 9i. iPost’s Pension and Benefits Assistance application operates 24/7, has zero tolerance for downtime, and supports 300 users on average.

The transition was accomplished successfully over a period of 2 months, under the co-project management of HTWC and iPost, and with the collaboration of the COBOL-IT development staff.

Using coBol-it, coBol compiler and runtime licensing costs were eliminated.

Successful completion of the project in 2 months was possible be- cause the COBOL-IT Compiler Suite is completely integrated into the HTWC Solution set. Online and Batch components needed to be tested, and performance benchmarks had to be run. The COBOL-IT Compiler Suite Enterprise Edition met and surpassed all Performance Requirements, with the HTWC Project Manager re- porting a 25% improvement in performance, on average. The ne- cessary costs savings were achieved as COBOL Compiler and Runtime licensing costs were eliminated. iPost was able to realize not only these significant cost savings, but also to retain Enter- prise-Class Support Services provided by COBOL-IT in partnership with HTWC. As intended, cost savings were made available for maintenance, quality assurance, and new development.

iPost achieves an almost immediate payback.

By transitioning to the COBOL-IT COBOL Compiler, iPost has elimi- nated 60%-70% of the costs associated with their deployment, and removed all uncertainty from future budget projections in this area. The cost of COBOL support services, built into the HTWC so- lution set, is largely consistent with costs associated with service provided by the former COBOL vendor.

Payback will begin almost immediately, as the savings incurred from the licensing charges more than compensate for the cost of the migration project. For end-users, the transition has been enti- rely transparent.

HtWc and coBol-it work together to ensure success.

HTWC, COBOL-IT, and iPOST successfully handled a difficult chal- lenge to reduce costs on a project that had already achieved a high level of cost reduction. The complete integration of COBOL- IT into the HTWC solution stack gives all customers an opportunity to consider the cost reductions achievable by eliminating COBOL compiler and runtime licensing costs, and moving forward with partners dedicated to providing high levels of service. Cost sa- vings in the area of COBOL compiler and runtime licensing can ensure that adequate resources are available for other mission critical tasks in the areas of maintenance, quality assurance, and new development.


ChallengeSolutionCustomer Benefits
• Cut costs on Rehosted application in Open Systems
• Maintain high performance for online/batch systems 24/7
• Successfully implement quickly
• Eliminate COBOL Compiler and Runtime licensing costs using COBOLIT
/ XFRAME® solution
• COBOL-IT / XFRAME® solution
• Project Duration: 2 months
Over 60% reduction on costs of application deployment
• More cost effective COBOL Compiler
• Lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of solution.