Tired of Turnover? 7 Tips to Keep Your IT Team Intact

7 Tips to Keep Your IT Team Intact

In the IT realm, attracting top talent is only half the battle. It’s keeping them that’s the real challenge. And with an average employee tenure of only about 3 years, it’s a serious concern for many organizations across the globe. Add in the complex, fast paced and highly stressful role of IT and you’ve got quite the conundrum. So, what’s the secret? How can you keep your talented employees on for the long haul? Here are 7 tips to point you in the right direction.

Challenge them. The last thing you want is for your IT personnel to become bored and stagnant in their current positions. Avoid this by investing in ongoing training, setting up mentoring programs, and offering opportunities to master new skills and technologies. The more you keep your IT employees engaged and involved, the less likely they’ll be to look elsewhere.

Cross-train and rotate. Being stuck on the same project day in and day out can lead to fatigue and frustration. Consider rotating employees onto various IT projects so that they don’t feel trapped. This will provide exposure to and the opportunity to learn about new skills and also open up the door to be able to approach long-term projects from differing perspectives – all of which can benefit your organization.

Arm them with what they need. These days, keeping up with the onslaught of incoming IT requests is nothing short of exhausting. Don’t leave your tech team out to dry by making them handle this monumental task manually. Arm them with the technology they need to do their jobs better, faster, more efficiently and more effectively, such as intelligent process automation.

Allow and encourage them to vent. Without question, the job of keeping an entire organization safe from the potentially devastating financial and reputational damage a successful cyber breach can have is incredibly stressful. Additionally, IT personal often feel tense due to the amount of classified and confidential information they are entrusted with. Provide an opportunity and a secure avenue for these employees to vent their feelings.

Mandate time off. Everybody needs a little down time, but given the fast-paced and highly stressful field of IT, these employees could probably use some time off more than anyone else in your organization. This is where technology can help. By automating a good portion of tasks and leveraging the cloud to embrace more flexibility, your team can take the much needed time off they deserve without the company feeling any negative impact.

Use realistic metrics to measure success. One of the biggest reasons IT professionals find themselves dissatisfied at work is because they feel they aren’t being adequately recognized. This is often due to a lack of clear and specific metrics for success. Management should set realistic expectations, communicate openly and routinely measure progress. Good work should be rewarded and areas of potential improvement identified and addressed in a positive, productive way.

Empower them. If your employees feel that their only option is to come in every day and put in 10-12 hours of labor, they’re not going to develop any kind of connection or loyalty to your organization. On the other hand, if they know that the work they do plays a direct role in the “big picture” and that their achievements are tied into the company’s overall success, they’ll be much more plugged in, which means they’re more likely to stay on for the long haul. Empower them by inviting ideas and encouraging autonomy.

Are you doing enough to keep your IT team satisfied, engaged and plugged in? If not, you could be facing higher turnover, which can negatively impact your company’s bottom line and also leave you more vulnerable. By implementing the above tips, you’ll create a more positive work environment that fosters longevity. Happy employees will work harder to ensure that your organization remains strong, secure and successful.

Free Ebook: 10 time-consuming IT tasks you should automate!

Separating Fact from Fiction: 5 Biggest AI Myths Debunked

There’s a ton of hype surrounding the topic of artificial intelligence, and unfortunately, where there’s hype, there’s also usually a good amount of misinformation. Sadly, many of the mistruths being perpetuated are causing undue fear and trepidation. The good news is, these myths and misconceptions about AI can easily be debunked. Let’s tackle a few of the more common ones below.

Myth #1 – AI is going to eliminate the need for humans in the workplace.

This is, by far, the biggest fear around artificial intelligence, and thankfully, it’s mostly false. Yes, AI is going to automate mundane, boring and repetitive tasks. Yes, intelligent automation is even capable of taking on complex and multifaceted processes and workflows. But the reality is, for every job AI replaces, several more will be created in its place. After all, someone’s got to manage and oversee all that advanced technology, right?

(Note: if you’re a worker who is concerned about how AI will impact you, our free Automation Academy is a great way to shore up your skills and future-proof your career.)

Myth #2 – AI is smarter than people.

Another frightening idea that’s being perpetuated is that artificial intelligence is somehow capable of outsmarting its human counterparts. This is simply not true. In fact, AI is really only as smart as you program it to be. You see, intelligent automation requires data. And not just any data, either. It requires a steady stream of high-quality, relevant information. As long as you provide this, the outcome will be successful. But don’t worry. Robots are not about to go rogue and take over the workplace autonomously. That’s the stuff of science fiction.

Myth #3 – AI is nice to have, but not really a necessity.

Perhaps this was true a few years ago, but today, organizations that are not prioritizing a plan for artificial intelligence will undoubtedly find themselves behind the curve before they even realize it. In fact, experts predict that over the next decade, there will be no company or industry that isn’t touched by AI in some way. The fact is, AI and intelligent automation make it much easier to innovate, scale and quickly pivot based on market changes. Failing to have a strategy in place is a risky proposition, especially since your competition likely does.

Myth #4 – There’s no way to know what AI is up to, and therefore, it’s impossible to trust.

When the concept of AIOps was first introduced, admittedly there was a sense of ambiguity surrounding it. For early adopters, it was this mysterious system that somehow produced results without providing any real insight as to what its underlying algorithms were doing and why. As time passed, however, these solutions have matured and become much more transparent. In fact, AIOps platforms like Ayehu place a significant emphasis on providing insight and maximum visibility. The result is a solution users can easily understand and – more importantly – trust.  

Myth #5 – As long as I test well, my AI project will be successful.

All AI initiatives should start with test projects. But it’s important to recognize that just because the results are great during the testing phase, doesn’t mean they’ll stay that way once you deploy AI into production. Remember that point we made above about the importance of quality data. The truth is, real world data changes often, and sometimes at a breakneck speed. If your AI and machine learning models aren’t being continuously fed up-to-date and accurate information, your accuracy level will begin to decline. The key to consistent, sustainable success with AI is ensuring that your training data is the same as your production data.

Have you fallen victim to one or more of the above AI myths or misconceptions? It’s never too late to learn the truth and course-correct. Get started with intelligent automation, powered by AI and machine learning, by downloading your free 30-day trial of Ayehu today.

How Intelligent Process Automation Can Help You Scale at a Moment’s Notice

Imagine how much your organization could accomplish if you had an army of employees at your disposal. More importantly, what if these employees were perfectly happy waiting in the background for the next time you needed them? That’s essentially what you’ll get with intelligent process automation. Let’s take a look at the surprising way AI can provide your business with the scalability you need to stay on top of your game.

Instant Access

With human workers, it’s not feasible to drastically increase your workforce whenever the need arises, nor is it easy to decrease your numbers when things get slow. There’s a complicated process behind all of this and time is not on your side. With intelligent process automation, however, you have a team of AI-powered robots who are ready, willing and able to get the job done at the flip of a switch.

Consistency

Bringing different employees up to speed via on-boarding and training can be challenging and time-consuming, especially in today’s fast-paced, digital age. Not to mention the fact that you have to initiate the entire process over again every time someone new joins the team. Intelligent robots, on the other hand, can be “trained” in groups of any size with the outcome being routine and perfect consistency across the board.

Cost Savings

Recruiting, hiring, training and retaining talented employees costs money. In addition to intelligent automation providing the ability to scale up or scale down instantly as well as train and deploy thousands of bots while maintaining complete consistency, all of this can be done at a reduced cost to the business.

Now, let’s take a look at a few real-world applications that put these benefits into action.

Scenario 1

Your business is launching a new product or service and, as a result, will incur a substantial increase in transactions. Your current workforce is already maxed out and you don’t have the time or the ability to hire any additional employees. Intelligent process automation can step in and bridge the gap, handling the influx of work at any capacity necessary without the major hassle and expense of staffing. Then, once things settle down, you can scale back down to normal as needed.

Scenario 2

Business has been particularly lucrative as of late and you’ve had to increase output significantly to meet the increased demands of your customers. Suddenly, the market takes a turn for the worse and your numbers start to rapidly decline. With intelligent process automation in place, you won’t have to face the possibility of laying employees off. Rather, you could just scale back the number of robots you’re deploying.

Scenario 3

One of your biggest competitors has launched a new product or service and you’re scrambling to develop and implement something similar. Chances are you can’t afford to hire a slew of new employees to help bring your comparable product or service to market. Besides, doing so would take too long. But, putting too much pressure on existing team members could result in costly mistakes and QA issues. Intelligent process automation, on the other hand, is available at the ready to take on whatever is necessary for you to remain competitive.

Without question, intelligent process automation has the potential to bring your business to the next level. Are you ready? Give us a call today or download your free 30 trial now to get started.

Read this before installing that free automation tool…

Who doesn’t love getting something for nothing – especially when you’re working with a limited budget and have to find creative ways to keep your business running efficiently, such as with intelligent automation tools, without breaking the bank? While some of the products out there that are being offered for free are great, and can serve a purpose for your business, some of aren’t quite so beneficial after all. In fact, turning to the wrong type of “freebie” can actually end up costing you more money in the long run. Here’s how.

First of all, free products typically focus on providing a single-use solution. In other words, they’re designed to address one or maybe two problems that you or your team may be facing, but they aren’t all-encompassing. This is all fine and good until you step back and realize you’ve got a dozen different tools running at the same time, and none of them are actually working together. In some cases, they may even be working against each other. The result of this fragmented approach is decreased efficiency and increased chance of error, both of which can be costly to your business.

Secondly, free products are not usually designed to support a long term strategy, but rather to fix a present need. Any successful business person knows that in order to continue to be profitable, there must be a strategy in place that will account for both the present and the future. Without an effective long term plan, you’ll only be able to realize short term goals, and you may find your tools falling short over time. Intelligent automation tools that you invest in, on the other hand, are much more robust and can be figured into the big picture and help you achieve long term goals.

Another way that free intelligent automation products may end up costing you in the long run is that they typically lack real substance. When they’re built to be free, they’re usually missing several key components that could really take your business to the next level. This means your automation won’t be running on all cylinders and will ultimately fall short. As a result, you may find yourself with no other choice but to purchase the full product in the end, just to avoid having to start over again. Then, if the full version isn’t much better than the free one, you’ve wasted valuable money that could have been spent on a better product.

Finally, there’s the age-old theory that if something looks too good to be true, it probably is. If you’re going to place your trust in a free product, you’d better make sure you understand the motive behind the giveaway. These businesses are in it to make money too, and giving everything away isn’t going to do them any good….unless they can somehow rope you in via their free product to have to pay for other things, such as ongoing support or add-ons. Before you know it, that “free” tool has suddenly cost you more than it would have to simply purchase a quality product outright.

In short, while availing yourself of free products may seem to make smart business sense on the surface, in the long run it may end up costing you more. Do you really want to take chances on a half-rate product that could end up doing the exact opposite of what it was designed for by actually costing money and hindering productivity and efficiency? The wisest choice, at least when it comes to intelligent automation, is to do your homework and select a quality tool that isn’t free, but will produce the benefits your business needs over the long haul.

At Ayehu, we don’t offer a free version. We do, however, allow users to try our fully functioning platform with 100% of our features, completely free for 30 full days. Experience intelligent automation powered by AI and see for yourself what an investment in technology can do for your business. You won’t be disappointed!

3 Ways AI will Fundamentally Change the Way We Work

Over the years, there have been many revolutionary changes to the way humans work. In recent history, it’s been the introduction and widespread adoption of computers and digital technology. Now, we’ve entered a brand new “revolution” that’s primarily being driven by artificial intelligence, and the rate of change we are experiencing is nothing short of mind-boggling. And if current forecasts are accurate, we are on pace to undergo enormous transformation over the next 5-20 years.

Specifically here are three of the most significant ways that AI is poised to fundamentally change the way we work in a relatively short span of time.

Increased Automation

The obvious place to begin is a monumental increase in tasks and workflows being automation, not just in terms of volume but also in complexity. This increasing reliance on artificial intelligence still has many people, understandably, falling victim to the narrative that robots are slowly but surely making human workers obsolete.

Thankfully, this is largely a false alarm, at least at scale. Yes, some roles will inevitably be replaced as automation capabilities become increasingly intuitive, the advancing technologies will also pave the way for new jobs. In fact, by one estimation, AI and automation could deliver a global GDP boost of upwards of $15 trillion. Those willing to reskill or upskill will position themselves well to ride the wave and future-proof their careers.

Evolving Roles

In addition to creating new roles, automation and artificial intelligence will ultimately improve the quality of work for humans as well. In all honesty, the tasks most likely to be turned over to robots aren’t exactly the most sought after jobs. Better to leave those mundane, repetitive and frankly, boring tasks to machines so humans can concentrate on more cognitive and meaningful work.

Undoubtedly, the human roles of the future will focus on the soft skills and human-centric capabilities that artificial intelligence can’t yet replicate – things like empathy, communication, creativity and problem-solving.

Employee Experience

Ultimately, the workplace of tomorrow will feature a hybrid combination of both humans and robots working in tandem to achieve the same end goals. Many organizations have already begun to make this transition, but eventually, even companies that could be considered “non-tech” to some degree will see a transformation in the employee experience.

Regardless of whether it’s a warehouse or manufacturing plant, or an office environment, workers in just about every field and across almost every role will need to get used to working with “co-bots,” that is, co-workers that are artificially intelligent. In everything from how new team members are recruited to how they carry out their daily work duties, AI will continue to play an increasingly prominent role.

And, of course, the workforces of tomorrow will also become increasingly decentralized – a trend that has been thrust to the forefront over recent months, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. What this means is that employees of the future will be able to work virtually from just about anywhere. This then removes global barriers and opens up tremendous possibilities for talented workers.

Preparing Your Organization…

Without question, AI and intelligent automation technologies are going to completely transform the way humans work. Workers who embrace these inevitable changes and are willing to adapt and evolve along with them will be best suited to take advantage of the many opportunities that surely lie ahead. Likewise, organizations must also plan and prepare for the newest revolution by making an investment, both in terms of technology as well as people.

If you’re interested in jumping on the AI bandwagon but are unsure where to begin, downloading a free, 30-day trial of Ayehu and enrolling your employees in our Automation Academy are great places to start.

How to Easily Automate Azure Infrastructure Tasks

Author: Guy Nadivi

Although AWS is currently the 800lb gorilla in the cloud, Azure is its fastest-growing competitor. The work-from-home mandate due to the COVID-19 pandemic, seems to be accelerating a migration to the cloud for many enterprises, and that means more and more infrastructure tasks will need to be done on platforms like Azure.

The Ayehu NG platform integrates with cloud computing environments like Azure and AWS, so it can mitigate the need to manually perform a lot of those critical yet mundane tasks associated with managing an Azure cloud instance.

The cloud computing market is growing very fast.

According to research firm MarketsAndMarkets, in this crazy year of 2020, the cloud computing market’s size will hit over $371 Billion!

In just 5 years though, they forecast the market size will more than double – hitting over $832 billion by 2025.

That represents a healthy 17.5% compound annual growth rate. Not too bad.

And that report from MarketsAndMarkets contains an interesting quote:

“Increased automation and agility is expected to drive the cloud computing market.”

So automation actually has a dual role, both as a contributor to growth of the cloud computing market, and as a solution for making it easier to manage.

Just for the sake of comparison, I want to show you this chart I grabbed off of Statista.com comparing all the major cloud service providers, including AWS, Microsoft, Google, IBM, etc.

The bottom row of the chart represents market share for AWS. As you can see, since Q2 of 2017, their market share hasn’t changed much. Three years ago, it was 34%, and last quarter it was 33%, so they’ve remained pretty steady.

Now look at Azure. Starting from the same time period, we can see that Azure went from 11% market share in Q2 of 2017, to 18% as of last quarter, Q2 of 2020.

No other individual provider has grown that much in that short a timeframe.

Not only is the Cloud Services market growing, but Azure’s share of that market is growing faster than anyone else’s.

Azure’s global footprint is large, and continues to grow.

They currently boast over 60 regions, which they define as “…a set of datacenters, deployed within a latency-defined perimeter and connected through a dedicated regional low-latency network.” They also claim to have more global regions than any other cloud provider.

Azure also currently has over 160 physical data centers within those 60 regions. I don’t think I need to define what data centers are, so suffice it to say, they’ve got a lot of capacity.

Within those 60+ regions and 160+ data centers, Azure provides customers 22 different categories of service. There’s a really broad diversity among those services, as you can see in the graphic below. The number in parentheses on each hexagon represents the number of services in each category.

As of today, there’s a grand total of 277 services offered that Microsoft lists on Azure’s website.

Here’s a sampling for some of the specific services you’ll find in 4 of the most popular service categories.

Under the Compute category, there are services for VMs, SQL Server, and Containers.

The Storage category includes services for Backups, BLOBs, and Data Lakes.

If you need Network services, Microsoft offers Traffic Management, Load Balancing, and Firewalls.

And in the ever-critical Security category, you’ll find services for Active Directory, Key Vault, and VPN Gateway.

Now I suspect that most (if not all) of you reading this probably already knew about Microsoft’s many service offerings, the diversity of services they offer, their global data center foot print, and even their market share. So why am I going over all of this?

The reason why is because all of that massive computing capability Azure makes available to you, also requires a massive amount of often manual administrative tasks to be executed in order for your Azure instance to run smoothly. Which brings up the question – What percentage of Azure tasks can be automated?

As long as a task can be accessed through an API, and as far as we know the vast majority of Azure tasks can be, then you can automate that given task with Ayehu NG. We estimate that at least 90% of Azure tasks can be automated. Which means that as you grow your enterprise footprint on Azure, and as you increase the variety of Azure services you subscribe to, there is a solution for scaling your system administration capabilities in parallel that just might mitigate the need to increase headcount. That solution is available right now and can be plugged into your Azure instance within minutes of downloading.

One more thing to keep in mind. As your Azure footprint grows, and your volume of user demands expands, the number of tasks you’ll need to perform will increase as well. That will make it progressively more difficult for your staff to keep up, for one very simple reason – people don’t scale very well.

Even the very best Azure SysAdmins can only do so much. At some point, automation has got to absorb more and more of the repetitive, tedious, laborious tasks all this growth in cloud computing usage creates. The alternative will be trying to hire your way out of this dilemma, and that will prove to be far more expensive than adopting automation.

If you’re interested in test driving Ayehu NG and seeing for yourself how easily you can automate your own Azure infrastructure tasks, please visit our website or click here to download your very own free 30-day trial version today.