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Case Study

National Airways Corporation Embarks on IBM i Modernization Project

Due to an increasing user base as well as a surge in deploying new business applications, NAC upgraded its core application server to an IBM i Power7 processor. At the same time, the objective was to steer away from traditional green-screen application displays and provide end-users with a modern look for their new applications. Learn how National Airways Corporation (NAC) modernized their green screen applications while retaining their existing RPG code and talent thanks to Profound UI.

About National Airways Corporation

National Airways Corporation (NAC) is the largest general aviation company in Africa and one of the largest of its kind in the world.

NAC offers a full range of aviation products and services to the aircraft and helicopter markets, including new and pre-owned sales, maintenance, parts, charter, international operations, air ambulance services, aircraft leasing and pilot, technical and ATC training.

The Challenge

The demand for technological improvements remains a challenge in the aviation industry. Due to an increasing user base as well as a surge in deploying new business applications, NAC has recently upgraded its core application server to an IBM i Power7 processor. At the same time, the objective was to steer away from traditional “green-screen” application displays and provide end-users with a modern look for their new applications.

The Solution

After extensive market research, Profound UI and its applications suite was selected by NAC as the ideal development toolkit for RPG application modernisation and web enablement.

Key factors which influenced the decision that were met by Profound Logic include:

  • Retention of developers and skills, Utilisation of the IBM i’s world leading reliability, Intellectual property retention,
  • Achieving application roll-out deadlines,
  • Easy migration of existing applications to web-based environment without “screen-scraping”,
  • Launching a new BI module which includes graphs, tables and pictures.

NAC developers had no effort in finding their feet with Profound UI. “Existing screens were converted using the Visual Designer, while new applications were developed from scratch, employing advanced webenabled techniques,” explains Rob Vogel, Senior Manager Information Services at NAC. “Design time is dramatically reduced through a drag and drop enabled development environment, and the best part is the underlying RPG code required virtually no changes!”

End-users have also noticed the change, and according to Vogel ask if the company has moved to a new hardware platform or if their system now runs under Windows. Since the change, users feel more motivated, experiencing a modern web interface which they can also access remotely through a remote internet connection.

“Design time is dramatically reduced through a drag and drop enabled development environment, and the best part is the underlying RPG code required virtually no changes!”

Rob Vogel

Senior Manager Information Services, NAC

The Results

Together with the reliability and manageability of IBM i servers, NAC has jumped into a new league in application deployment. “Profound has bestowed a new future onto the IBM i,” says Vogel. “The investment in Profound has achieved a remarkable turn-around in user and management perception of the traditional legacy system approach.”

Nigel Lothian, Director of Logicmate who represents Profound Logic in the region said, “We are very pleased to welcome NAC to the growing Profound UI customer base. Rob and his team knew exactly what they were looking for and Profound UI was the obvious choice to satisfy their requirements. We are very impressed just how much progress Rob and his team have made in the short time they have had the Profound UI product.”

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