Automating your IT Special Forces team

By Michael Zuber

HP Cloud Leader, Americas

 

Every organization has them: the group of IT experts that always gets the call when something goes bad. Maybe it’s an application that’s down or experiencing poor performance, or a wave of requests for new development and test instances for the next great project—whatever the case may be, when you need a situation addressed immediately, it’s these pros that you contact first.

 

In most IT organizations, we are referring to the Database Administrators. DBAs are the Special Forces of IT, typically the most expensive resources to call in. Their talents are usually in high demand and short supply, so busy with day-to-day tasks that calling them to swoop in like superheroes for some emergency means putting something else on hold.

DBAs are often a dedicated team, always willing to go the extra mile for the common good of the organization and their business users. The problem is that these days, the demands placed on them are rising. Most organizations have chosen to automate components of IT that outside of the core work DBAs perform only to discover they have magnified the number of issues they must respond to.

 

Prevent a crisis in your crisis team

 

As both the volume and velocity of emergencies rise, I see two things happening to this Special Forces group. 

 

1. A drop in cycle time spent on day-to-day activities that will eventually lead to new emergencies, vulnerabilities and generally unhappy user communities

2. With a shrinking amount of downtime to recharge and refocus, this team will become burned out and eventually look to join a new team or organization

So what is a forward thinking IT or Business Leader to do?

The first step is often the hardest. This Special Forces team naturally doesn’t admit there is a problem because they think they’ve got it all handled. But a strong leader should look to automate as many of the non-value add and repetitive tasks these Special Forces are asked to do between emergencies.

 

Getting the most out of your best

 

This may be met with push back. However, the goal here is to limit future damage and stress to the overall system. Besides, this group will find plenty of things to do that will become their new daily tasks—they have a lot more to offer outside of another database refresh or instance cloning or patch application. Just think, they could look into database tuning or other as yet untapped activity they just can’t get to in a bipolar world of the mundane and the critical. These Special Forces group deserves better weapons in their arsenal—and the business will be stronger for the automation.

Go DBAs!

 

Learn more

 

Find out how HP can help maximize the value of your DBAs by providing end-to-end lifecycle management for database and middleware.

 

 

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