Raise your hand if you feel like your IT group is overstaffed.
That’s what I thought. :)
I think a lot about on-prem and public cloud automation. But I was wondering what the latest stats are on IT to employee ratios and man are they sobering!
I knew anecdotally that it was getting worse but I had no idea until I looked it up.
It’s a surprise you guys haven’t all burned out.
IT to employee ratios are skyrocketing
It’s really hard to find good data on the IT to staff ratios. Like seriously hard (so let me know if you have better sources) but from even the little I found there’s definitely a scary trend.
- 80:1 IT to Employee ratio in 2003
- 500:1 in 2018
Here’s some Enterprise IT math
+ More Process
+ More Complexity
= Less Staff
Here is the trend which I pieced together from four independent surveys. Not the best way to do data analysis but honestly I scraped the web and could only come up with these limited free sources on what IT to staff ratios are.
First of all who’s “recommending” 500 employees to 1 IT staff. Is there some committee for the burnout of IT staff I don’t know about.
There’s a really good reddit thread with IT staff ratios from different industries. One poor team working in K-12 education has an IT to user ratio of 2500:1. Yikes!!
I watched a great talk by the head of PlatformOps at Home Depot and he said they have a support pair for 1,000 developers (500:1 ratio) that was working well.
Automate or burnout
You can see which way the trend is heading. It’s only going to get worse.
Efficiency is not just a best practice anymore it’s being demanded by the organization by providing less IT headcount vs total employee count over time.
Frankly that’s why our company exists. If your company wasn’t demanding so much of you then you wouldn’t need automation and reporting tools. You could just throw more bodies at existing processes and be fine.
This leaves you with two options:
- Work like crazy for no extra pay (eventually burning out)
- Or automate
I know you’re thinking “I have no time, so I should spend the time I don’t have to free up time.”
Or… just do something. Anything.
Pick a tool and no it doesn’t have to be ours. But picking any tool and working on your processes is a step in the right direction.
Yes you’ll lose time. Yes some of it will be wasted. But if you’re honest you know that investing a bit of time now won’t take a year to pay you back. Some effort this month or in one of your quieter months can help make the rest of the year better.
One way to address burnout
If you’re an overrun IT department and looking to streamline your infrastructure management (on-prem or public) then it’s time to look into infrastructure or cloud automation software.
Why? Because science!
- 80x faster provisioning - Fortune 500 Electronics Manufacturer
- Eliminated 1,500 wasteful instances - Enterprise Software Company
- Performed 13,000 rightsizing actions - Fortune 500 Retailer
The right cloud automation tool can give you visibility into all on-prem (VMware, Hyper-V) and public cloud (AWS, Azure, GCP) environments and show you all the opportunities for improvement.
More info can be found in our ebook about 14 companies who are killing it in on-prem or public cloud automation.
Most teams are looking to start small.
- Simplify provisioning from ticket request to deployment
- Report on VM sprawl and identify opportunities to reclaim resources
- Perform cost optimization on public cloud resources
There’s no such thing as 100% automated otherwise we’d all be out of work.
It’s about biting off some of the bigger problems in your organization and showing your leaders some quick wins. That’s how we get more time and resources available.
Don’t forget the business case though!
Who’s actually succeeding in automation anyways
I wish I could say everyone using our platform is 100% automated and life is a bajillion times easier.
The thing I’ve learned about enterprise IT is that you’re all dealing with your own set of internal politics, custom tech stacks & procedures.
People | Process | Technology all affect how much of your environment you deploy Embotics into and therefore how much automation you leverage.
What I can give you is some good ammo to take to your VP/CIO to show how successful other companies are.
Top 3 arguments for better public/hybrid cloud management
- Save money - Eliminating public cloud waste is instant savings. CFO likey
- Improve security - Enforcing tagging, controlling user groups, etc
- Improve service - If you own the infrastructure then employees will wait less for their resources. Every executive likes a productivity story but try to tie it to real benefit. E.g. More releases per year, etc.
Top 3 arguments for better management of on-prem
- Save money - Optimizing to cut sprawl reclaims resources. That’s new hardware you don’t have to buy. CFO likey
- Improve service - Dev’s not waiting for resources means
- Free up time - Fill in the blank here. Automation will free you up to… do that AI project? Upgrade that legacy system? What’s the sexy project that someone higher up has wanted? Give them a carrot to make sure they get something out of it.
Of course your CIO is on your side but he has to justify everything down to the last dollar to the CFO. When you show up with a real business case that he can present it makes it so much easier to get new tools or spin up a project to make life better.