The fact organizations are facing tough economic times is an understatement. Mergers, acquisitions and compliance projects are in the forefront, leaving us minimal time to handle projects, such as conversions, within our limited time and budget. We’re regularly challenged to do more with less: less time, manpower and money. What happens when critical projects require an amount of analysis far beyond expectations? Must we accept the costs and inaccuracies of manual analysis or is there a better way to quickly and accurately determine the time and resources required for these projects?

This article presents an example of a successful project analysis for an IMS to DB2 conversion. The article doesn’t discuss the conversion itself, but data from the analysis was used to manage the conversion.

In IMS to DB2 conversions, employing a specific process for the analysis portion can help ensure a successful overall project. This process makes it possible to quickly determine the magnitude of the project, avoid potential problems that arise from inaccurate analysis, and eliminate unnecessary conversion of obsolete application elements. Using this process significantly reduces the time and manpower required for the analysis.

The Analysis Process

With any conversion project, it’s critical to accurately identify all application elements—jobs, programs, copybooks, files, Program Specification Blocks (PSBs), Database Descriptions (DBDs), etc.—to be included and to exclude obsolete application elements.

The analysis of the IMS to DB2 conversion project was organized into five phases:

1. Gathering application element information

2. Characteristics of application elements requiring conversion

3. Selecting application elements that require conversion

4. Assigning a complexity level to each application element

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