When your key developer is too busy solving database queries to do any developing, it’s time to take a closer look at the real cost of running PostgreSQL support internally.

PostgreSQL Support

Do you ever find yourself looking at your team’s achievements for the week, and wondering why you have accomplished less than half of what you set out to do? Often, it’s simply due to time spent resolving database issues, instead of focusing on the core business activities that actually generate revenue.

Managing in-house support of your PostgreSQL database may not sound like it requires a significant investment of time and money at first, but there is more to it than you think. Let’s take a closer look at what’s involved.

Overhead of managing support tickets

If you intend to manage your PostgreSQL support in-house, you're going to need the tools to administer the process. These include keeping track of support tickets, providing estimates and updates to customers/users, regularly updating your library of technical articles for future reference and so on. Not only do you have the cost of performing these tasks, but you also have the job of maintaining the tools themselves.

Ongoing development of technical knowledge

Today’s PostgreSQL databases are highly complex systems that do far more than just store data. Specialized indexes and statistics provide high-speed access to information. Different replication frameworks support high-availability architecture. Contributed libraries provide extensive additional functionality. To maintain adequate performance and availability of a PostgreSQL database, your staff need to be kept up to date on all the latest developments in these areas and others. This in itself requires a significant investment of time and money.

Demands on human resources

Most database systems run 24 hours a day, and even the best are susceptible to unscheduled outages. Providing in-house PostgreSQL support requires a minimum number of staff to firstly cover the 24-hour period over the whole year, and then to account for annual leave and sick days. This is neither cheap nor easy to manage.

Beware the hidden costs

There are also hidden costs associated with payroll, desk space, phones, etc., which drive the overall cost of in-house technical support even higher. This goes some way to explaining why some staff will be expected to cover core business activities as well as support. But that then creates the dilemma we started with - is it a better use of your developers’ skills to focus on developing, or solving database issues? Could you even calculate the cost of their time spent away from core business activities?

A viable alternative

So, now that we have established the ongoing investment required to manage your PostgreSQL support in-house, it’s time to consider a viable alternative - outsourcing. By engaging the services of dedicated PostgreSQL experts on a flexible support plan, you could free-up your staff to focus on core business activities, while ensuring your PostgreSQL database continues to operate with optimum efficiency. Either approach provides technical support. It’s a question of which option is most suitable to the ongoing demands of your business.

To discuss these issues in greater detail, contact the PostgreSQL team at Fujitsu Australia Software Technology.

Topics: PostgreSQL Support