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Mainframe Monitoring and Support

Overview
OBXtek Inc. is an established award-winning business providing information technology and professional management services to the federal government. OBXtek is a leader in its field and is committed to identifying, developing, and delivering innovative, mission-focused technical and logistical solutions to over 15 civilian and military partners in the Federal Government.
As a prime contractor for 93% of our current work, we possess a robust corporate infrastructure that provides management oversight and support for all our programs. OBXtek pairs lessons learned across disciplines with industry standard quality practices such as CMMI-Dev Level III, ITIL, 6Sigma, PMI, and ISO to create processes that leverage best practices and result in novel, successful solutions.
SSA's online mainframe environment consists of more than 200 Customer Information Control System (CICS) regions in production, with more than 650 total regions in the combined production, training and integration & development environments. The CICS regions are supported by DB2 and Integrated Database Management Systems (IDMS) databases and multiple supporting subsystems. These combined systems form the backbone of SSA information technology environment.
For the last several years, new SSA applications have been developed for a distributed environment utilizing Internet technology and protocols. Many of these distributed applications communicate with the CICS regions and the database servers on the mainframes. Additionally, many of these applications are developed using WebSphere MQ and WebSphere Application Server (WAS).
DOSDO-SMAB monitors all Mainframe processing and Teleprocessing at the National Computer Center (NCC) Baltimore MD and Second Support Center (SSC) in Durham, NC. Many of the Agency's newest initiatives and leading applications internally and externally, including eGov, eVerify, AAMVA, BSO, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are dependent on SMAB's ability to monitor and troubleshoot, to maintain mainframe, and internet/intranet applications availability 24/7, 365 days a year. We operate all large-scale computer systems in the NCC and SSC, monitoring overall system performance and resource utilization to assure an effective workflow. We diagnose and investigate all problems affecting online and large-scale systems performance, alerting key personnel who either own, operate or exert responsibility/interest in the software or hardware effected and notifying the agency and customers of potential failures, outage timelines and existing problems.
Responsibilities
The objective of this task is to provide ongoing technical support for SSA system users; work with SSA systems programmers to monitor the online systems; and provide troubleshooting of systems and applications problems as they occur.
Work schedule : Tues - Sat; 8:00am ? 4:30pm; Off Sun & Mon
Weekend Permanent Support: Levels 1, 2 and 3 Technical Support
Purpose: Monitor, identify, analyze, troubleshoot, document and resolve anomalies detected in online processing.
Activities:
Proactive approach on handling problems in the monitor room, while communicating effectively through online messaging, phone, email and teleconferencing.
Initiate troubleshooting issues, keeping management informed.
The ability to multi-task, addressing technical issues involving online processing, paying attention to details.
Deep dive investigation, using monitoring tools to identify problems and performing necessary actions to resolve issues after consulting with management.
Assisting application and system support personnel in determining root causes and problematic scenarios.
Deliverables:
communicate issues to Task Manager/Weekend Managers via phone, email or alert as soon as possible after discovery of a problem within 30 minutes of the occurrence.
examine and resolve each problem within a reasonable amount of time based upon the severity and escalation procedures involved in the scenario or related to the application. This timeline will vary but notification and examination should begin immediately following any issue with updates and status reports daily.
update all troubleshooting databases (as needed) via SMAB's internal reporting mechanism (the Greenbook) within same day as discovery and immediately following resolution.
Troubleshooting and Analysis
Purpose: Troubleshoot problems detected in the online applications.
Activities:
Analyze and debug WebSphere MQ series performance problems.
Analyze and debug WebSphere Application Server (WAS) problems.
Troubleshoot other WebSphere related issues.
Respond to Hot Terminal and pager messages identifying problems.
Identify and report Z/OS, JES3, Top Secret and other underlying system software problems.
Identify and troubleshoot CICS and database problems.
Download CICS system and application dumps.
Perform CICS system dump analysis and provide recommendations.
Troubleshoot DB2 and IDMS problems.
CICS programming using Common Business Oriented Language (COBOL), Java and assembly.
Debrief all SSA management and staffs on the problem and its resolution including how the problem was detected, resolution alternatives, reasoning for course of action chosen, results of resolution, and any fallout.
Update all troubleshooting databases as needed via SMAB's internal reporting mechanism (the Greenbook) detailing event and actions taken, as well as opening and closing associated CAPRS tickets as requested, publicly documenting problem or resolution information.
Monitor Online Systems
Purpose: Work with SSA personnel and other contractors to monitor the online applications and detect, notify and troubleshoot problems, which may adversely affect the performance of the online systems and delivery of service to SSA customers.
Activities:
Monitor WebSphere MQ and WebSphere Application Server (WAS) applications utilizing various monitoring tools including TEPS, Omegamon/Omegaview, Tivoli ITCAMS, CICSplex, CA Introscope, ABEND Aid and generated reports to identify/isolate problems.
Monitor more than 650 CICS regions in production, training and integration environments utilizing various monitoring tools including TEPS, Omegamon/Omegaview, Tivoli ITCAMS, CICSplex, PreAlert, CA Intrsocope, ABEND Aid and generated reports to identify/isolate problems.
Monitor DB2 and IDMS database subsystems and coordinate with other branches and teams within the division to identify and resolve issues.
Respond to Hot Terminal, SSA Alerts and email messages identifying problems related to online processing (i.e. DB2, IDMS, CICS, WAS, WMQ, etc.)
Work independently and with other Monitor Room personnel to troubleshoot problems detected in the online applications including Short on Storage and Maxtask conditions.
Upon detection of a problem, through generated reports, scans or monitoring tools, begin level 1 troubleshooting activities such as reading system and application dumps; provide recommendations and perform basic resolution activities.
Investigate CICS storage violations and recommend dynamic changes to CICS region settings to correct or contain CICS problems ? with approval from the Task Manager or his/her designee.
Identify and report Z/OS, JES3, Top Secret, peripheral device and file contention problems and other underlying system software problems.
Take full system and snap dumps, start system traces, perform system IPLs and manipulate peripheral devices.
Recognize and resolve operational problems affecting batch job processing and make changes to system software source libraries, table libraries, JCL libraries, and load libraries on an emergency basis to correct operational problems.
Research problems to determine root cause and participate in data gathering for studies to determine the most effective configurations for matching system capacity to operational needs.
Update all troubleshooting databases as needed via SMAB's internal reporting mechanism (the Greenbook) detailing event and actions taken, as well as opening and closing associated CAPRS tickets as requested, publicly documenting problem or resolution information.
Qualifications
Must be able to work an alternate work schedule : Tues - Sat; 8:00am ? 4:30pm; Off Sun & Mon
8+ Years of relevant work experience
Must be able to obtain SSA Clearance Suitability



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