How to Conquer the Challenge of IBM i Staffing
The use of Managed Services are predicted to continue to increase in 2017. Companies are realizing that focusing on what they do best can provide them with a competitive edge. This is especially true in IT. Whether you want to supplement your staff, become more proactive with your system maintenance or shorten your problem resolution time, Managed Services can help.
Supplementing your existing staff with an IBM i Certified Systems Administrator will allow your team to focus on core business strategies and innovation.
Often small companies don’t have a dedicated system administrator, instead a programmer has to pull double duty. This isn’t good for business because you’re getting the bare minimum for administration and that time is taken away from development activities. Focusing your existing resources where they have the biggest impact on your business, will help you to get the most out of your team.
Since the IBM i is so reliable and just seems to run, companies have been lax in replacing staff in some cases. Whether someone retires or they leave the company for a new opportunity, some of those people are not replaced. Eventually, shops have no one who is actively managing the IBM i, instead they are just reacting to problems. Problem resolution times are increased when you wait for the users to report problems, which can have a negative effect on your business.
This leads to another issue; putting all your eggs in one basket. When you have one resource who has the knowledge and the skills to maintain your IBM i, you are at risk. If that person leaves for any reason, you have to try to transfer the knowledge to another resource, if that is even possible. With Managed Services you have a team of people who are familiar with your environment and you never have to worry about someone leaving.
Without a real time monitoring solution, your staff has to either react to user complaints or spend their time manually looking through logs to ensure that everything is working as expected. Sometimes, not even finding the problems. None of these options are good. With Managed Services companies you gain the benefit of having proactive monitoring, without the cost of licensing and maintaining a monitoring solution.
Proactive monitoring notifies the Provider when a problem occurs and allows them to take action or notify the right person.
With a Certified IBM i Administrator receiving the alerts, you also gain the benefit of the experience the provider has from solving problems for other customers. Both of these benefits allow for faster problem resolution, increasing system performance and availability.
System Maintenance tasks like IBM i OS upgrades and PTF Maintenance are things that usually have to be done after hours, and they require tons of planning. When you are already short staffed, or you have your programmer doing system maintenance, it seems like updates get further and further apart. If at all. Having a regular maintenance schedule performed by a Managed Services provider helps ensure that your system remains healthy, optimized, and secure.
If you are in one of these situations, you’re not alone. That’s why Managed Services will continue to grow this year. The good news is that iTech Solutions can help you.
Learn more about our MSP services by getting a copy of the MSP benefit guide.