IBM MQ Review

Improved and influenced communication between different applications, then standardized that communication

What is our primary use case?

We develop applications for 20 companies in the insurance industry. We have about 20 different product systems that use the same MQ layout. 

We are also using it for testing and educational purposes.

Our customer base is in the closed market of Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

We just switched versions from to 9.1.

How has it helped my organization?

Most European companies have MQ, though we just added it four years ago. MQ changes the way people think about their applications. E.g., they are more integrated. We see synergies with the tool, but there is a long path to changing people’s minds.

What is most valuable?

The MQ layout is quite easy.

It is very stable. We don't have many issues.

What needs improvement?

We have had an issue with the migration. Most of our applications are running on Java and WebSphere. We have a project to get rid of an old .NET application since we are experiencing a loss in connection during the migration to 9.1. The problem appears to be more on the .NET side than the MQ side though.

The technical user interface is outdated in terms of the language used. I think this is inherited from the mainframe. This is more of an engineering issue. It is running on a Windows platform, and I don't like having Windows being the backbone of our company.

I don’t like legacy view of MQ.

For how long have I used the solution?

Four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We don't have a problem with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not had any large scalability issues. The business that we have is not that big. In Switzerland, we have around 3,000 people working with all our systems. We don't have that many transactions. For our 20 customers, we have four servers in production with two on standby and two that are active. We need scalability mostly to run large printing jobs for MQ, where we need disk space. Overall, we don't have any scalability issues.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

This solution has improved and influenced the communication between different applications, then standardized that communication. Before, we had a lot of different interfaces, which were partly handwritten. Now, we have two or three manned technology with MQ that are automated. Therefore, we are focusing and reducing the amount of technology.

For some special parts, we also had something previously in place. We ran around 100 to 1000 PDFs in a batch mode.

How was the initial setup?

We have a standardized way in describing our servers, services and rights because we have our own infrastructure. We just generate the MQSC scripts, then push it to the right server.

What about the implementation team?

The time it takes to deliver a new integration varies. From our point of view, we are really fast, but we do not develop applications on our own. We are a type of project management and system provider company. This means that most applications are written by different companies. E.g., we have IBM as a software supplier.

Two people from our company maintain the solution along with a consulting company that we have. All this is done part-time.

What was our ROI?

Our costs haven't increased but they also have not improved.

What other advice do I have?

We are happy with it. I would give it an eight (out of 10). 

We are not using containers.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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