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IT Staffing Ratios

By pking ·
Where can I find industry standards for IT staffing levels? I'm looking for #IT staff/users, % IT Budget per Gross Revenue dollar...etc. I've been doing google searches but not coming up with any numbers and my boss is a number's kind of guy.

I'm trying to justify my claim that we need more staff.

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by timwalsh In reply to IT Staffing Ratios

There is also no "standard" for IT budget as a percentage of gross revenue because such a standard makes no sense.

You will need to justify your claim based on numbers generated within your company.

Some of the variables that will come in to play strictly from a support standpoint are:
Complexity and commonality of hardware systems
Use of proprietary or in-house developed hardware
Complexity of software packages
Number of different software packages supported
Use of proprietary or in-house developed software
Level of computer knowledge of users
Levels of knowledge and skill sets of present support staff
Level of user satisfaction with present support provided
Workload of support staff
Amount of overtime put in by support staff (you need to differentiate between overtime needed to accomplish a task that can only be done during non-business hours, and overtime needed to either get caught up or accomplish assigned tasks on schedule; the former is function of the work environment, the latter is a function of inadequate staffing or improper skill mix)
Amount of backlog presently experienced by support staff
Rate of backlog growth (it is common to have some backlog; it is also common for the level of backlog to grow and decline at various times; it is uncommon to have NO backlog - this means you are probably overstaffed; it is also uncommon to have a continuously increasing backlog - this means you are understaffed)
(continued)

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by timwalsh In reply to

Frequency with which some support staff are looking for work while other support staff are overworked (this means you don't have the right mix of skills within your staff)
Average time needed to resolve problems
Average complexity of problem reported
Number of common, recurring problems (which could point to a need for replacing aging hardware, acquiring software that does what your users need it to do, or increasing user education - any of which can also affect staffing)

If you really want to make an impression with your boss, present him with numbers that apply to your company (which he can immediately relate too).

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by datkins In reply to IT Staffing Ratios

While there are few standards published it seems, we can use some guidelines that can then be adjusted based on your environment. Let's take teh number of PCs per technician as an example. I have seen numbers range from 25 to over 100 PCs supported per technician. The nature of the user and software applications being used often drive this ratio. A standard Windows 2000/Office 2000 image rolled out to 1000 users probably will require fewer technicians/PC than a custom application.
Another factor is location. Are all users in one location or are you spread out? Current installed hardware and software base can play a large roll in staffing levels. If you have a lot of different hardware, then creating standardized images can be difficult leading to the need for more staff.
User training level, complexity of applications, custom development, hosting email/web server in house all will be a factor in determining how much staff is needed. If you have the right people with the right skill sets and are still falling behind, then you probably have the data needed to justify additional staff. It may take some work to pull it all into a usable "numbers based" format.
For what it is worth, my departent support 437 PCs, 22 servers including email, 2 web servers, file/print server, 8 Citrix servers IP based telephone/voice mail system and SQL server plus associated switches and routers across 19 locations in a 1000 square mile area. We do that with 5 staff including me.

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