Palm Pilots, Nintendo 64, cell phones with buttons; Technology has changed quite a bit since the 1990s. And IT management has changed with it. Back in the 1990s, IT management meant calling the IT guy down the hall when a computer broke or dial-up was slow. He might have even been the one who helped install Windows 95. But, just as technology has grown-up from its younger, clunkier 90’s persona, so, too, has IT management.
IT management has changed tremendously over the years, and has matured far beyond just break-fix, as-needed support. To get the most out of IT, the methodology behind a business’ IT management needs to be robust and cover proactive and preventative measures that align with a business’ overall objectives. If your business is just reacting to broken technology, you are likely wasting an enormous amount of time, money, and effort. Today’s older and wiser approach to IT management creates a more efficient way to not only fix broken elements, but also prevent them from happening in the first place. This allows your business to focus instead on finding new ways to utilize technology to support its goals.
Below are three areas that should be incorporated into any business’ holistic approach to IT management:
1. Preventative Steps with Automation
The future of IT management lies in automation, and the question businesses should be asking isn’t “what should I automate?”; but rather “what am I not automating and how can I automate it?” From pushing critical security updates and patching to running predictive scripts to determine a machine’s health, longevity, and productivity, automation has endless possibilities for IT management and optimizing technology. Automation has even advanced to producing “self-healing” scripts that fix items after they break without any human interaction. As the amount of automation that your company is able to incorporate into your IT management strategy increases, the time necessary to spend updating and maintaining IT infrastructure decreases. This allows your IT department to adequately prioritize and spend time discovering emerging technologies that can help your business grow and win with IT.
2. Proactive Analysis with Remote Network Monitoring and Management
Remote network monitoring provides proactive support by continually analyzing and monitoring your important network systems without the need of a person physically being onsite with the network device. This means your internal IT department or IT provider can manage the infrastructure of all locations without being tied to the office, and can ensure your network is always reliable and available. Network monitoring also decreases time spent on the normal root-cause analysis required to determine why an issue occurred and enables you to strategically react to potential problems. It allows you to identify network and application issues with specific devices before they become larger challenges, which translates into more time and cost-savings for your business. For example, you can monitor disk space on your server and set an alert as it nears full so you can find a solution before your server’s performance is affected. By utilizing remote management in your IT management strategy, problems can be fixed without having to involve end-users and may be resolved prior to the users ever knowing there was an issue. Proactivity with remote network monitoring and management leads to increased uptime for your business and allows for flexibility in the management of your IT infrastructure.
3. Online Support and Resolution
Although IT management has grown away from break-fix, it does not mean that devices do not break and that onsite support is never needed. By complementing automation and proactive monitoring with onsite support, your business benefits from an extra level of protection if physical hardware needs replacing or for other on-site issues that may arise. Additionally, if your business finds it needs someone onsite periodically to better fit with your work environment, then prescheduled onsite visits should also be part of your IT management plan. With an option of onsite support, you can rest easy knowing that your business has access to an extra resource if needed.
IT management strategy should be approached as a combination of preventative, proactive, and, when the need arises, on-site processes that ensure your business remains running smoothly. Need assistance forming your IT management strategy? Contact us today for help in crafting your optimal IT management plan.