Changing Role of IT Administrators Presents Opportunities for Partners, ISVs

A survey of 1,500 IT professionals provides a glimpse into the day-to-day role of cloud IT administrators, helping channel partners and ISVs determine where they can add the most value.

BetterCloud on Tuesday released the latest findings from its recent survey on cloud IT trends. It focuses on the changing role of the IT administrator because of cloud office adoption.

BetterCloud's David PolitisDavid Politis, BetterCloud’s CEO and founder, tells Channel Partners that there is a “huge opportunity to be the go-to partner for these modern cloud IT professionals.”

“Partners have a rare chance to establish themselves as experts in an emerging field and embed themselves as the trusted advisor for the next generation of cloud-first companies,” he said.

For many years, IT administrators have been subjected to job descriptions that included upkeep and maintenance. They were viewed as enforcers instead of enablers, according to BetterCloud. However, the emergence of cloud IT is altering perceptions, freeing up valuable time that cloud IT administrators are using to become proactive decision makers in their organizations, rather than reactive troubleshooters.

Cloud IT administrators working for organizations running all of their IT in the cloud, or will be in the near future, are now focusing on more strategic, non-routine tasks that add value to their organization, rather than spending most of their time on routine tasks that can now be outsourced to cloud office system providers.

On average, the quickest cloud adopters are: spending 25 percent less time on scheduled maintenance tasks; 23 percent less time on unscheduled maintenance tasks; 20 percent less time on storage and quota management; 27 percent less time on data recovery; and 21 percent less time on upgrades.

Cloud IT administrators are able to spend more time on: improving collaboration and end-user training; application integration and development; infrastructure improvements and security enhancements; strategic planning for cloud success; reporting, data analysis and long-term projects; and professional development and non-routine IT work.

“The shift to the cloud is having a powerful impact on organizations as a whole, but also greatly affecting the role the average IT person plays in an organization,” Politis said. “Our data shows that IT admins are able to take on new projects and become proactive decision makers in their organization rather than spend the majority of their time on routine maintenance tasks.”

For a company that runs all of its IT in the cloud, a channel partner or ISV might add value by integrating several different systems through custom development work or a software as a service (SaaS) offering, he said. But for a company running very little of its IT in the cloud, a partner could add more value through training, as a product or service, as well as through recommendations for how to move more of their IT into the cloud, he said.

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