In the wake of a global pandemic and an enormous shift towards working from home, IT Senior Management must be concerned with balancing the focus between working from home and living at work. They need to keep the IT staff productive, empowered, and engaged, but without traditional face to face. We need to know that the right work is getting done in an efficient manner, but we have to avoid the pitfalls of micromanagement.
At the same time we need to ensure opportunities for growth and a mix of interesting challenges to keep our team’s interest and allow them to provide strategic value to the business. On top of that, they’re juggling IT leadership needs, managing expectations of their management, and fostering their own personal development. They need to have competent employees and vendors, secure and available data, predictable processes, and plan for the future. There is plenty of room for mistakes, but what is the most common one made in managing the database resources?
Knowing When Help Is Needed
The number one mistake made by IT directors is assuming their existing DBA team does not need help. Data is one of the most critical assets of the company, but the most critical asset is the people.
If the databases are running smoothly, it is tempting to think all is well and to focus on the myriad of other challenges. Often your DBA spends 50-60 hours (≈ 2.5 days)/week on maintenance and responding to issues. Your team lacks the time and energy to be your strategic partner in improving data protection, capacity planning, future projects, right-sizing, and staying abreast of business trends and best practices.
Further, many good DBAs are not apt to tell you they are working at 120% capacity and ask for help. So, what can you do to free up the DBAs and usher your database resources into an intentional paradigm?
Add Database Expertise with a DB Managed Service Provider
Many companies opt to use remote database administration managed services (DBMSPs). These services can offer 24/7 support and on-call coverage by a team of expert DBAs for less than the salary of a single database administrator. The repetitive service tasks such as monitoring, space management, security patches, backups, replication monitoring, database creation, user management, data movement, and a host of other activities can all be offloaded to an expert database managed service provider. This frees up your internal team while keeping your DBMSP engaged enough in your day-to-day to quickly help out in a pinch or workload spike.
A database team that sleeps at night is a more responsive, sharper, happier team. This allows them time to implement best practices and proactive decision-making. Your database resources can then focus on the future, allowing the in-house DBA team to become a strategic planner and architect, while your business is safer and more complete.
Your database team is best suited for strategic tasks, such as researching whether databases utilizing artificial intelligence and machine learning are appropriate for your environment. They have a deep understanding of the data, structure, access paths, and uses of the data.
Implementing a database managed services provider can not only save money but also grants the database team the availability to help developers build better systems, applications, and processes that are successful and well-tuned in production. Additionally, they can assist the business side in understanding trends and patterns. This allows for tactical planning for data and security as well as improved strategic decision making.
Exploring the Possibility of Adding a DBMSP
Highly effective IT directors can add value to the whole organization by liberating the DBA for strategic planning. Your database team becoming proactive and innovative can enhance the potential of the database capabilities thereby increasing the value of the company’s data.
Do not make the mistake of undervaluing your database resources. A strong DBMSP can customize their solution to fit their client’s needs because one size does not fit all. Offloading routine tasks can set them free to add value and shift focus to a more successful future, but that might mean different things for different organizations. Exploring the possibility is relatively quick, free, and harmless. If you’d like to learn more, contact us today.