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Server Support Staffing Ratios 2023
The demand for server support administrators has been on a downward trend for a decade. Virtualization, automation, DevOps, and the cloud have made IT infrastructure easier to administer. As a result, the IT infrastructure support burden is lessening, although there are factors also working in the other direction. We examine those factors in this new report, part of our IT staffing series.
Server Support Staffing—Nowhere to Go But Down
Staffing for server support administrators has been flat since 2019. Going back to 2012, the demand for server support staff had been on a downward trend, as companies were moving more of their workloads into the cloud. We expect the downward trend to return. This Research Byte examines the reasons for the trend and provides a summary of our full report on Server Support Staffing Ratios.
Server Support Staffing Ratios 2021
Although the demand for server support personnel has declined since 2012, in recent years there have been small increases, indicating a flattening of the staffing ratio. How many server support staff members does an organization need today? To answer that question, we provide four key benchmarks: server support staff as a percentage of the IT staff, users per server support staff member, physical servers per server support staff member, and OS instances per server support staff member. We provide these metrics for small, midsize, and large organizations. We also assess how industry sector can influence server support staffing metrics. We conclude with recommendations for improving server support productivity.
Virtualization Improves Productivity of Data Center Staff
One of the least recognized factors of server virtualization ROI is the positive impact that virtualization has on the productivity of data center personnel. In this article, we provide statistics showing that the productivity of data center staff improved significantly from 2006 and 2007, concurrent with an increase in OS virtualization levels. These trends are consistent across Windows, Unix, and Linux platforms. We conclude by summarizing the reasons that data center staff productivity benefits from increasing the level of virtualization. (4 pp., 4 figs.)[Executive Summary]
Most Windows and UNIX Servers Are Underutilized
Because of the declining costs of computer hardware, many organizations simply add more servers for each new application or service to be provided. This leads to proliferation of servers that are largely underutilized. On prime shift, nearly 80% of production UNIX servers are less than 20% utilized. Even worse: over 90% of Windows servers utilize less than 20% of their capacity.