How good system administration is like new underwear

I can't remember the last time I bought my own underwear.  I may not have EVER bought any for myself.  Each Christmas, there's typically a few new pairs of boxers under the tree with my name on them.  Well, more precisely, my name is on the wrapping paper that the underwear come in, not actually on the boxers themselves (because I'm either too old now or much too young to have people labeling my clothes for me).

But I never have to worry about underwear.  There's an unseen process chugging along that keeps my clothes drawers replenished with fresh undergarments.  It's a constant.  The underwear is just there and it just works.

Good quality system administration is like new underwear because it's a constant, it's just there, and it just works.

If the development team is worried about placating the system administration team or if the dev team constantly has to work around various odd limitations in the system, then you're system administration is not like new underwear at all.  It's like a sock that has holes.

You don't want to worry when you put on your socks in the morning that your big toe might shoot out of your sock into the cold morning air, right?  Is there a more uncomfortable feeling?  Similarly, you don't want to launch your new app and have to cross your fingers that the database is going to hold up.  (Perhaps I'm starting to mix metaphors here with all the underwear and socks talk)

But my point is this... When your dev team has to worry about the system administration, they're going to spend more time talking about and coming up with solutions to issues that could probably be addressed by more robust system administration.  That makes your programming projects take longer.  And that's costing you money.  Real countable money.

So get yourself a good admin.  Pay them wisely.  Give them new toys to play with.  And never worry about your underwear again.


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