6th March 2024

IBM i Update: February 2024


Welcome to the #IBMi update for the past four weeks in February 2024.

In this update, I review the Fortra 2024 IBM i Marketplace Survey and (in under six minutes) compare the results to the previous year.

You can watch the video below or read the full article underneath.

Watch the Video:

The 2024 IBM i Marketplace Survey Results

At the end of January we enjoyed the release of the 2024 IBM i Marketplace Survey, as compiled by FORTRA.

The survey asked over 300 IT professionals across multiple industries – the majority (23%) being Administrators and IT Managers (at 22%) with developers and directors accounting for 16% each – a good spread.


The global respondents are dominated by the USA with 58% coming from in from America compared with 45% from last year, and Canada remaining at 2% for both 2023 and 2024.

In Europe, we drop down more than 10%, from 34% in 2023 to 21% in 2024.

The rest of the world remains at 15% with the largest contributor being Latin America at 7%. Now, the astute amongst you will notice that the figure doesn’t add up to 100% but I’m sure this has to do with large multinationals responding…


Commitment to the IBM i in 2024

Amongst these companies, the survey found a strong commitment to the platform with nearly 56% staying on or adopting cloud / datacenter services up from 50% in 2023.


However, while 20% were looking to increase their footprint in 2023, now just 12% are looking to do this while just over 20% are planning to migrate some or all of their applications to a new platform.

A positive was the belief that 94% of respondents thought that IBM i continues to be a good investment for their business, which was down only 1% from 2023.

And that was reflected with the percentage of the core business applications running on the platform with 43% of businesses enjoying 76 to 100% of their core applications running on IBM i with a further 28% having half to three quarters of companies with IBM i at the heart of their business.

Talking of the core applications at the heart of their business, nearly 70% of these application were bespoke, in-house written solution comparable (almost) with last year.

A distant second was with the numerous ‘other’ solutions – I’ve included McKesson, Jack Henry amongst others.

Then Infor with their XA, System 21, M3 to name just a few.

But it’s encouraging to see the continued confidence from businesses in developing and supporting their own core business applications with the benefits of scalability, control and ownership these bring.


Programming Languages on the IBM i in 2024

The eight most popular languages for IBM i developments sees RPG continuing to be the mainstay followed by SQL.


The modern ‘web’ languages continue to eclipse COBOL with the only (slight) gain on the previous year here being Python.

Continuing with development, it was unsurprising to see that Apache retains its top position as the top open-source development tool with GIT being slightly down from the previous year.

The big gain in 2024 is with Tomcat, up from 22% to 27% – an interesting development and, as it was put in the report, “This is all part of the modernisation conversation and helps explain why application modernisation is near the top of the list of IT concerns.”

Speaking of which, it’s always the top concerns for the IBM i enterprise that draw the eye and, for the eighth year running.


Top Concerns for the IBM i in 2024

Cybersecurity continues to top the chart as the main concern facing IBM i IT professionals.


Indeed, in 2024 we’re seeing concern over cybersecurity reaching a record high of 79% up over 10% from 68% in 2023.

Next up (and bumping disaster recovery from it’s second place spot) is Modernising applications – again another big rise from 64% in 2023 to 72% this year.

And while Disaster recovery also saw gains from 56% to 63% in the past year… the BIG mover this year are with the growing IBM i skills gap.

Now, I don’t have the data for 2021 and 2022 but you can see the jump in concern over IBM i skills is a whopping 11%.

From 54% in 2023 to 65% in 2024 moving concerns over IBM i skills into the top three and relegating DR to fourth.

Clearly, this is an issue to address.


Read the full 2024 IBM i Marketplace Survey

And that’s it – a quick summary and year-to-year comparison of the IBM i Marketplace Survey, I hope you enjoyed it?

The full report [that requires more than 6 minutes of your time] is on the Fortra website for you to download and digest.

But for now, thank you for taking the time to read (and watch) the blog post.

Should you wish to view any of the articles featured in full, please see our blog on the proximity website here https://www.proximity.co.uk/blog/

Until next time,


Catch our previous January IBM i Update here. Alternatively, if you’d like to receive the latest IBM i Update hot off the press to your inbox, subscribe to the newsletter version on LinkedIn here.

Posted by Rob on 6th March 2024.