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BNY Mellon Increases Workload and Cuts Costs by Investing in a Standardized Mainframe Environment

Thomas Connolly, managing director and BNY Mellon’s global head of mainframe services - Photo by Matt Greenslade


Customer: BNY Mellon
Headquarters: New York City
Business: Financial services
Challenge: Merge multiple mainframe models, applications and databases
Solution: Standardized on a single mainframe model, consolidated applications and moved to a single-database type
Hardware: Nine IBM zEnterprise EC12s and a zEnterprise 114
Software: More than 600 industry-specific mainframe applications, DB2 for z/OS

Many companies consolidate to a single platform because it’s easier to manage one or multiple mainframes than a plethora of one-off servers—whether running Microsoft* Windows*, UNIX* or z/OS*. But to consolidate so your multiple boxes can all have the same model number? Well, that’s a new one.

Many technology managers don’t see the benefits of getting rid of perfectly good systems that are only two or three years old. Instead, when they get new boxes, they simply integrate them into their existing environment. In the short term, it seems like a good idea. After all, the cost of upgrading all of their systems at the same time might seem prohibitive.

For the long term, however, a wholesale move to, say, nine IBM zEnterprise* EC12s (zEC12s) can benefit operations—and may even help organizations save money while improving performance. This was the case for BNY Mellon, which decided to jettison some older mainframes and standardize on the zEC12s across the board.

The results have been remarkable, according to Thomas Connolly, managing director and BNY Mellon’s global head of mainframe services. “Not only have we increased our mainframe workload by 20 percent, but we’ve also decreased our annual technology operating budget along the way by about 15 percent. That’s pretty significant,” he says.

Round Peg, Round Hole

Situated at One Wall Street in New York City, BNY Mellon is at the epicenter of all things banking—and at more than 225 years old, it’s one of the longest-running financial institutions in the world. It’s not a typical branch-and-teller bank, however. Instead, it focuses primarily on global investments with around 48,000 employees in 36 countries helping clients at every stage of the investment lifecycle by creating, trading, holding, managing, servicing and distributing their financial assets.

That it came out of the banking meltdown largely unscathed is a testament to its management philosophy of avoiding risky bets. In fact, BNY Mellon has been called the “Safest U.S. Bank” by Global Finance magazine, the “Best Global Custodian in Asia” by The Asset magazine and “Service Provider of the Year” at the 2012 FTF News Technology Innovation Awards.

This last honor is hardly a surprise given how much emphasis the company places on its technology investments, realizing that technology is much more about enabling cutting-edge innovation than simply pushing data around. That’s why it’s put so much faith in its mainframe environment, which currently includes nine zEC12s—six for production and three for disaster-recovery purposes—and an IBM zEnterprise z114 external Coupling Facility (CF). The company is more than taking advantage of these machines, running some 400 applications on them.

Jim Utsler, IBM Systems Magazine senior writer, has been covering the technology field for more than a decade. Jim can be reached at

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