The oft-promised federal “retirement tsunami” has yet to materialize, but about 14% of the current federal workforce is eligible to retire this year. In 2017, the Government Accountability Office estimated almost 32% of the federal workforce will be eligible to retire by 2022. As these employees retire, federal agencies potentially face a significant loss of institutional knowledge that will affect every aspect of government. This loss will likely most keenly be felt, however, around legacy systems and applications. Although modernization has been a priority in IT shops across government for years, most agencies still have a significant amount of legacy technology performing vital functions. They’re going to need a strategy to ensure continuity in their systems as the only employees who fully understand them rapidly approach retirement.
Read the full Wall Street Journal article, “As coders retire, who will run your legacy apps?” here.