Report: Hybrid Workforce is Making Public Sector IT Management More Difficult

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The trend toward more remote work is challenging public sector IT professionals.

More Americans than ever are working remotely, and it’s proving to be a major challenge for IT professionals working to keep public sector networks secured, according to a report released this week by IT firm SolarWinds.

The report, released June 14, indicates 52% of public sector IT professionals believe the acceleration of hybrid IT environments has increased the complexity of their organization’s IT management. Nearly half (49%) of respondents said they only had visibility into “about half or less” of their applications or infrastructure, and 64% of those respondents further pointed to an “inability to detect anomalies or perform easy root cause analysis” as key factors that limit visibility.

“Operational complexity prevents organizations from capitalizing on their technology-driven transformation and investments and delivering benefits for end users,” Sudhakar Ramakrishna, president and CEO of SolarWinds, said in a statement. “As organizations look beyond the pandemic, they must re-examine their investments from the past few years. Part of that requires organizations to have visibility into their IT environments to understand what’s working and not working, and where to prioritize their efforts to achieve the ROI targeted in their planned projects.”

Among those surveyed, only 9% said they felt “extremely confident” about their public sector organization’s ability to manage IT complexity, and fewer than one-third (28%) said they were somewhat confident they could manage complexity. Four percent said they were not confident at all.

Complexities increase as more personal devices connect to networks remotely and as workloads and applications operate off both cloud and on-premises infrastructure.

The largest single drivers of complexity reported by the public sector IT pros surveyed were new tools or technologies (46%), increased tech requirements from multiple departments (44%), maintaining a legacy tech stack (37%) and fragmentation between legacy and new technologies (37%).

Respondents also reported lack of budget (44%), lack of implementation resources, including staff (41%) and time constraints (38%) were the largest barriers to improving visibility and implementing observability.