April 10, 2017
by Todd Erickson, Tech Writer
Brain drain is a serious problem facing organizations that use software applications to run their businesses. Learn how you can seal the drain and retain all of the knowledge trapped in your applications.
At the end of every workday, your software development teams walk out the door with all of their knowledge leaving with them. Some of them don’t come back, and that loss of information and expertise, or brain drain, is a growing business problem, especially with IT industry turnover rates hovering between 20-30% annually.
Consider how much knowledge your organization loses when key members of your development team retire or join other companies. Not only do you lose development expertise, but the knowledge your engineers have regarding how your software applications work, such as:
- How the system is architected
- The subject-matter expertise used to implement functionality
- The business considerations that drove product and feature designs
- How third-party and external systems are integrated
The plight of developing and supporting older and large-scale applications is exacerbated when companies have to scramble to replace retiring software engineers with unqualified replacements. Multiple reports suggest that 10,000 Baby Boomers walk out the corporate door in the U.S. for good every day.
Many of these retirees are the software engineers that developed and maintain the many systems that still run on Cobol and other mainframe programming languages. The impact of losing thousands of mainframe engineers and their vast programming and business knowledge will be widespread. The 240 billion lines of Cobol code running today power approximately 85 percent of all daily business transactions worldwide.
Most organizations don't have the processes in place to capture their employees' business and system intelligence before they leave for good.
It’s especially difficult for engineers. Today’s software tools don't allow them to easily convey their expertise to others – or enable developers, business managers, and executives to easily discover and utilize any previously shared knowledge.
What can you do?
You might be surprised to discover that your engineers’ domain and system knowledge already resides in one other place outside their minds – your software. While creating the code, development teams pour their organization, programming, and business intelligence into your applications.
Imagine what you could do if your organization's technical and business stakeholders had access to all of the knowledge and human intent embedded in your software applications. Imagine asking your software application how it works and having it answer you back.
How can you unlock all of that untapped knowledge?
Liberate encoded knowledge
Phase Change Software is creating AI-assistive technology that unlocks the encoded knowledge embedded in your software applications.
Our assistive AI understands your software and turns it into formal units of knowledge. In essence, software is transformed into data.
Our AI assistant will liberate your software's hidden knowledge and help it understand itself. Our natural language processing (NLP) techniques will enable your technical and business stakeholders to easily interact with applications.
You will soon be able to literally have a conversation with your software, and have it teach you its encoded programming, business, and domain knowledge.
Todd Erickson is a tech writer with Phase Change Software. You can reach him at email@example.com.