Automation is another one of those buzzwords you read everywhere. It’s the 21st century, so we must automate everything! But how do we take it from the theoretical to the practical? Keep reading, and I’ll give you some ideas and examples of how you can automate. Add your thoughts in the comments below so we can all learn best practices from each other!
For the sake of this discussion, let’s narrow the scope of automation. After all, we live so much of our lives online, the idea of automating every single thing gets overwhelming.
For today, let’s focus specifically on how to automate IT workflows and tasks. I’ve broken this list down by method of automation. The way I see it, we can automate with tools or by writing our own code.
Automate with Tools
This is a tricky one. We all know tools can make our lives easier and eliminate repetitive tasks, but sometimes we can introduce so many different tools that we end up with an overload of annoyance. There’s a balance to strike here: Carefully selecting which tasks to automate by using the right tool is always a bonus. Here are few tasks in your IT world that might improve when automated with a tool:
Individual task management
Patching/software deployment, of course!
What tasks do you currently automate with tools?
Automate with Code
Automation with code can take multiple forms and it all depends on your personal comfort level. I used to work primarily using Linux machines. One way I automated my work was by using aliases. Getting to a directory/folder that I can never remember was a pertinent use case. In general, if I found myself using the same sequence of commands in the terminal for certain tasks, I created aliases to get me there faster. But, you can take it up a notch and make a script if you’ve got a workflow too large to replace with a single alias. That’s where the magic is. You can script almost anything – how much just depends on your familiarity with the terminal and your comfort level writing code.
What scripts have you written to automate your tasks?
Comment below to share your insight. We’d love to hear what you’ve done to automate your work!
Jessica Starkey | Technical Marketing Engineer