Technology breakdowns happen. Software malfunctions. Hardware fails. You’ll need someone to take care of those issues. Someone in that position is a system administrator. System administrators will be required as long as things break, things go wrong all the time, we can’t say all things work perfectly fine, even with the best possible solution or the greatest investment in hardware.
The system administrator role isn’t going away anytime soon. It’s just evolving in lockstep with the rest of the technology industry, focusing less on hardware and infrastructure and more on service delivery, shifting from being viewed as a cost centre to an innovation engine.
That’s fantastic news for IT professionals trying to advance their careers.
Turn challenges into opportunities
While challenging, the technological changes represent new opportunities for system administrators. With the growth of cloud and DevOps processes, there are many ways of thinking about IT that allow system administrators to become more strategic.
System administrators who used to have a hardware mindset must now think about how the end-user uses the technology. Hybrid IT, in particular, has forced system administrators to be business enablers, capable of reliably, agile, modern, and highly usable systems building and managing systems that meet the needs of businesses. However, the most significant opportunity for system administrators is the change in the number of technology options available for each business role and the end-user has more decision-making power than ever before. As these options continue to grow, the system administrator can and should become a trusted advisor to all business areas, transforming business requirements into technical requirements. For this, sysadmins must listen and understand the company’s needs, evaluate between cost and benefit, and recommend the best option.
Stay relevant now and in the future
While the evolving technology landscape poses a threat to system administrators who don’t reinvent themself, those who take advantage of these changes in technology will be able to ensure their relevance today and well into the future. To effectively take advantage of the opportunities available to system administrators in today’s IT industry and redefine the role, they should consider the following advice:
Play a strategic advisor role, rather than a problem solver.
Many technology decisions have shifted from the system administrator to the end-user. System administrators need to be more focused on the end-user and play the role of an advisor and not just a problem solver. Sysadmins must guide business units, such as marketing, and advise them on technology options and then provide the appropriate integration services.
For the business, the most important thing is that applications work well all the time and their components. If there is a drop in the application’s performance or a general disruption, the business stops operating. Because the end-user experience metrics are now part of the CIO’s SLA., the modern system administrator needs to think about application uptime and performance.
Use monitoring as your best ally.
Due to the importance of uptime and application performance, monitoring systems and applications should become a habit. System administrators must implement and manage end-to-end monitoring solutions to improve application performance, realign resources, identify early warning signs of problems, and take proactive action. The system administrator becomes a hero by identifying and solving a problem before end users know it.
Know how to make the right technology decisions for business
While the cloud is critical to every business, system administrators must be reasonable about the right time to make this migration. The cloud is just an IT menu item, and system administrators should be educated on when and how to use it in ways that deliver the best benefit to their organizations. However, the cloud is just one example. There are some new technologies available to IT: from containers and IoT to Big Data. System administrators must choose technologies that genuinely improve the business and adopt them when they reach the appropriate level of maturity.
Safe and secure
Whatever the system administrator does, security needs to be the priority. Attacks are becoming more sophisticated and evolving at the same pace as organizations prepare for them; sometimes, they are faster. The problem is compounded by the amount of sensitive information companies store. As a result, system administrators must always take steps further to ensure their organizations’ digital infrastructure security.
Today, the field of technology is much more comprehensive, spanning from hybrid IT, SaaS, and hyper-converged applications and changing the job of the system administrator from a server room to a critical business advisor.
System administrators must go beyond the infrastructure to genuinely grasp the demands of the business and how technology may meet them in order to seize this opportunity and secure their place in the next generation of IT.
Baking Clouds offers outsourcing services for companies. We have professionals who are experts in technology ready to help you.