Saving Time at Work Adds up — to a Life You Want

Ever wonder how many minutes in a day you could reclaim if you didn’t have to run herd over OS deployments, patches, upgrades, reimaging and the myriad other systems management and deployment tasks that take up your time? Well, I’m going to go out on a limb and say there are probably other things you’d rather do with that lost time. There are never enough hours in a day; at least not for the things we actually want to do.

Work-life Balance Makes Headlines

Last August’s New York Times investigative report exposing brutal work schedules at Amazon.com continues to reverberate across the tech industry. Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz took to his blog to weigh in: "Many people believe that weekends and the 40-hour workweek are some sort of great compromise between capitalism and hedonism, but that’s not historically accurate,” he wrote. “The research is clear: beyond 40-50 hours per week, the marginal returns from additional work decrease rapidly and quickly become negative."

But according to Glassdoor.com, the trend seems to be heading in the wrong direction. According to the site’s 5-point rating system, employees rated work-life balance a 3.2 in 2015, down from 3.4 in 2012 and 3.5 in 2009.

Tools: Making Life Easier

Leaving at 6 p.m. shouldn’t be a fantasy. In IT, the right tools can make the difference between exhaustion and exhilaration. So why are we chaining ourselves to time-consuming, repetitive tasks when there are tools available to set us free?

Having a tool capable of “lights off” deployments — re-imaging machines, installing and updating crucial apps — during non-business hours seems an obvious solution. And while we’re at it, why not adopt one that can automate every step of the systems management lifecycle. Systems management and deployment tools like these do exist, but perhaps we first need to give up the ingrained belief that running ourselves ragged is the only way to prove the value we offer our organizations.

Remembering Why We Work

Take a minute to read our latest Real IT story about an overworked IT administrator and avid gamer who’s been sacrificing personal time to keep crucial systems up and running for a non-profit health clinic. Though he gains satisfaction knowing his work helps doctors provide better care, the constant “firefighting” pushes him to a breaking point when 162 new computers destined for the clinic’s remote locations show up misconfigured, potentially requiring days of overtime to become useable — right before a long-planned birthday trip to E3 with his son. Does he make it? 

Anonymous