The COVID-19 pandemic has shed light on some states’ older technology in turn putting COBOL programmers back in demand.
In late March, politicians passed the the $2.2 trillion CARES Act. Furthermore, this included a $600 weekly increase in unemployment benefits. As states attempt to quickly implement the act, claims hault the benefits by taking as long as two weeks to process. State government mainframe computers run on the 60-year-old programming language, COBOL. As residents continue to file for unemployment, the computer systems in Kansas, New Jersey, and Connecticut that rely on COBOL experience an unprecedented surge in demand.
“Not only do we need healthcare workers but given the legacy systems, we should add a page [on www.covid19.nj.gov] for COBOL computer skills because that’s what we’re dealing with,” New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy.