The 5 biggest challenges for today's IT admins

Jenny Carpenter

Every job has its challenges, and working in IT is certainly no exception. But there are some hurdles specific to system administrators and whether they can succeed in the role.

What are those hurdles? A survey conducted earlier this year reveals five key challenges facing IT admins today:

1830274341. Time is not on their side
Lack of time was the most significant finding in the survey. Nearly 55% of respondents agreed that their greatest challenge is “finding time to do everything.”

2. It’s hard to work around the users
The second-biggest challenge among respondents to the survey was the difficulty of “doing work without impacting users.” Nearly 50% of users highlighted this.

It seems that IT professionals in most businesses have to stay late and go in on the weekend! IT admins face a challenge akin to performing highly skilled operations without waking the patients.

3. IT pros yearn for centralized management
More than 4 in 10 respondents (42.5%) highlighted the challenge of centrally managing their IT infrastructures. With increasing mobilization in the workforce, the challenge is becoming more acute. Being in three locations at once is impossible for a small IT team.

4. Keeping on top of everything is complicated for many
Nearly 40% of respondents said that a major challenge is “keeping everything running smoothly.”

This brings to mind the constant double-edged sword that all IT professionals are up against: On one side, they strive to be proactive and plan ahead, but they must also respond to the day-to-day challenges posed by the users and the business.

This brings us neatly onto the final point:

5. Users are unpredictable!
More than 36% of the people surveyed said their users are a big challenge!

Let’s face it: This is unlikely to ever change. After all, without employees there would be no business, and without the business there would be no need for an IT department.

Finally, there was one positive sign for IT admins: Only 11% of respondents said that getting sign-off for IT spend was a problem. With that in mind, perhaps IT admins should focus on persuading the “powers that be” to invest in solutions that improve automation and centralized management.

In turn, they could reduce the pressure caused by the other challenges discussed above.