Unlocking the value of your IT department with Infrastructure Automation

ecs-admin 8th February 2016

Information Technology (IT) companies in today’s business landscape are in a tricky position: as more and more of our personal and professional lives come to depend on IT, availability is fast becoming one of the most central requirements of our daily lives.

At the same time, IT companies today are expected to respond to increasingly more complex requests, and to deliver results in ever-decreasing windows of time. No matter how efficient your employees, workflows and processes may be, we’re rapidly approaching a position in which servicing the burgeoning IT needs of today’s population is becoming impossible by traditional means. One of the most effective solutions to these kinds of bottlenecks, and one of the central principles underpinning DevOps is Infrastructure Automation. In this blog, we’ll discuss how Infrastructure Automation can see you through the most difficult of times and ensure your clients receive the level of service they expect, come rain or shine.

Why is automating IT infrastructure and operations so important?

According to a study by Gartner, IT infrastructure and operations (I&O) accounts for approximately 50 percent of the total enterprise IT headcount. With budgets often being stretched to breaking point, being able to reduce the cost of even a single department can alleviate significant financial pressure. But with I&O amounting to roughly half of the enterprise IT workforce, the potential for financial savings or releasing capacity are exponentially greater. I&O, in the context of today’s data-driven and IT-dependent culture, is also a valuable business area to focus on for facilitating innovation, building out new services and experimenting with new possibilities. With less time spent on ensuring things are ticking over, your I&O staff will have far more opportunity to do the kind of work that matters to them – and your business.

More staff doesn’t equate to increased productivity

One of the more persistent results of the Industrial Revolution is that we tend to think of more as being better when it comes to business. In reality, though, there’s little correlation between the two – especially in the light of automation technology. The real meaning of productivity to a business is the amount of staff time that can be spent on work that brings value. By automating tasks that take up a lot of time but provide little value, you’re immediately increasing the productivity of your IT department and driving their Return on Investment (ROI) up as a result.

Infrastructure Automation provides a number of benefits to your organisation.

With virtually all business processes depending to some degree on technology in today’s marketplace, Infrastructure Automation isn’t simply a tool for increasing the efficiency of one particular department. Rather, it’s a means of freeing up resources wasted on mundane, error-prone tasks and assigning them to more appropriately profitable and meaningful pursuits. Often, this is a product of an implementation itself: by automating critical business processes that don’t require a high degree of creative thinking or human input, you’re enabling your staff to focus on more innovative, less repetitive work. You’re also enabling more activities to be delivered with the same resources, which is key with the increasing expectations for agility and speed to market in today’s business landscape.  Perhaps even more crucially, you’re giving your staff the chance to thrive – to do the work they want to do, and be great at it. The connected world means a world of alternative opportunities not only for your customers but also your staff. As Adam Jacob (CTO at Chef) says, “sad people build sad products, which in turn creates sad companies.” And, as Richard Branson says, “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to. If you look after your staff, they’ll look after your customers. It’s that simple.”

ECS Digital is a Digital Transformation consultancy with over 12 years experience implementing DevOps solutions for companies around the world. If you’re interested in finding out more about our approach and the unique insights we can offer into how to transform your business with DevOps and IT Automation, download our free guide to DevOps Maturity Assessment.

Image Credit: www8.hp.com

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