Even after all these years in technology, I remain in awe of IT pros. Watching my kids’ classes, it seems everyone—including elementary school students and other civilians—is practicing truly geeky, hands-on-keyboards arts. We’re also seeing more casual administrators—people with a keen interest in spending some time managing networks and applications on the way to another role. But IT pros are different.
Like teachers, firefighters, and healthcare workers, IT pros tend to go where help is most needed. They endure simultaneously cacophonous and freezing server rooms, suffer the indignities of cost center budget processes, juggle multiple business teams with competing priorities, and regularly work nights, weekends, and holidays, all while presenting calm to assure end users. IT pros don’t work jobs. They’re called to be helpful.
And today they’re doing something they haven’t done in a decade in response to external forces. They’re jumping with a net to fail fast, while learning new (and in some cases immature) solutions like hybrid, cloud-native, data science, automation, and more. They’re also accepting the push toward service-based licensing, even with the added specter of a career-limiting OpEx bill only a click—or API call—away.
And none of this would be possible, especially including the major changes business now demands in the pursuit of transformation, without IT professionals. These projects demand conviction, endurance, and creative thinking about how they’ll be maintained years from now. They drive new needs to engage business leaders and ask tough or politically unpopular questions as they modernize legacy apps. And these projects are cornucopias of unknowns and new risks only considerable experience and skill can mitigate.
That’s why I remain in awe of IT pros. And on IT Pro Day 2019, it’s important we recognize the people in tech who make the world work. Here’s to the dedicated men and women who’ve charted their careers by solving problems, enabling the business, and are always there for us whenever we need help.
Perhaps it’s IT pros who are the original five nines.