If you are a COBOL programmer, then you are in luck. Your expertise is needed in some states here in the country, according to Kathy Gurchiek of the SHRM website. She says that COBOL programmers are in demand these days because they can align with workforce planning issues of the government. Well, here is what’s said in her article.
The three states that heavily rely on older computer systems are Connecticut, Kansas, and New Jersey. These computer systems for the three states process the claims of people on their unemployment, especially now that more than 30 million Americans have lost their jobs or have been placed on leave because of the Coronavirus. And we all know what is happening to these websites. To say that the sites are crashing, would be an understatement. It is not working at all!
Only a select few programmers these days are equipped with COBOL. COBOL is the program for these claims, and this type of computer system is sixty years old. So, let’s just say that your grandpa, if he is still alive, might be the one these government offices need. But are you a COBOL-learned programmer? If you are, Connecticut, Kansas, and New Jersey need you! They are looking for volunteers to help the site “crashing” issues.
The Governor of New Jersey, Murphy, has released a statement saying that their systems are more than four decades old. He announced during an interview with CNN that at this time, COBOL programmers are needed to fix the systems starting with the postmortems. But then, again, are there COBOL programmers still around?
As for Kansas, their Lady Governor, Laura Kelly, said that the Department of Labor was fixing and developing a new program to move from COBOL, but then, Coronavirus intervened. She said in an interview through CNN.
Nobody would play the blame game at this time, but back in 2017, Reuters already wrote about the issue with COBOL. They have said that when something happens (and now, something did), only a few people are equipped to handle the situation. Only several people know how to fix COBOL issues. The problem is that now, the finance industry is reliant on this 40-year-old system. How can this be remedied?
Why Is Workforce Planning Necessary?
Human Resource specialists use their computers so that they can view what an organization needs for their workforce. And then, they match that with the available people possessing the necessary skills looking for work. This is what COBOL or Common Business-Oriented Language does. The system is used on how they recruit and hire workers, and so that they can make their decisions accordingly.
We are facing a steady decline in our economy. The problem is global right now, and this pandemic has directly affected it. The COBOL systems crashing is not helping the offices at this time. Because of the pandemic, a lot of people are now jobless, and they are filing the claims. The claims are all in the system, which is dinosaur old. No working site, no files, and claims will be check and approved. No approval, no jobs, and no money for the people. It is a crisis now more than ever since specialized programmers are the only ones who can fix it. Government units and some banks are still relying on COBOL.
So, are you a COBOL programmer? If you are, then check this. Your help is badly needed.
As for HR purposes, the only way to start the work now is to search traditionally, like the olden ways. This is the new normal for us. We have to start from where we can start. It is better than to be idle.