IT Needs A Backup

Even though I’m about to get an IT degree, and I have a lot of IT experience and knowledge, and a lot of my friends work in IT, I don’t actually work in a straight IT capacity. I’m more of an engineer working on a testing program. I know enough about IT to be at least a little bit critical of other people’s work when the situation warrants it.

I was talking to some people recently about the IT field. I can’t say that IT in many organizations has a stellar reputation, and in some cases I would say it is deserved. If you’ve ever read (or been) the Bastard Operator From Hell, you might understand what I’m talking about. What I told the people I was talking to that day is that IT is a very strange paradox. IT is a highly service oriented field, but the qualities that might make a person good at IT also tend to make them less personable. Most IT training centers around the technical and so the service aspects are often left out. I do notice that a lot of IT departments don’t provide a lot of user training, and most users aren’t interested in that training. If anything, the goal seems to be to lock the user down so that the helpdesk has to be called to change the wallpaper on a user’s workstation.

What really gets me though is when IT departments seem to go out of the way to appear incompetent and lazy. Last night I had class at the University of Phoenix’s Bucks County campus. UOP does provide wireless Internet access, as they should when the textbooks are all online. Why shouldn’t you be able to get to your textbooks WHILE YOU ARE AT SCHOOL? Last night, I was able to connect to the access point but there was no further connection to the Internet. My instructor was having the same problem. We also noticed that the projector was projecting "Please clean filter" onto the bottom of the lecture Power Point presentation, cutting off some of the text at the bottom. When the school’s employee came in to pick up the attendance sheet, we decided to ask her about these problems. As for the "Please clean filter", she said that IT told her it’s supposed to do that. Seriously, they said that? Talk about lazy. Just clean the damn filter, turn off the warning, or return the projector and get one that works. Doesn’t anybody do research before they purchase equipment?

As for the Internet issue: "Oh, our IT guy is on vacation." So, what? I’m paying $1400 a class, and I should be able to get to the textbooks while I’m actually at the campus, shouldn’t I? They do have another IT guy, but he doesn’t know where the router is. Son of a motherless goat! How stupid and incompetent can this department be? We’re talking about an organization (UOP) that supposedly trains professionals. Don’t they hire any? Of course, if the IT guy who was not on vacation actually knew where the router was, he could probably fix the problem in a few second by resetting the router, which is one of the most common reasons why a wireless access point would allow connections in but not back out.

I know there are a lot of problems in modern companies regarding the IT department. They’re often overworked and under appreciated and at war with their users. I’ve worked support jobs before, and it’s hard when every single phone call starts off with somebody yelling that somehow you did something to cause their problem before you even know what the problem is. It’s very, very hard not to go to war with your users under those circumstances. We have to avoid it though. We have to face the fact that IT is service oriented. We have to provide some training to the users whether they want it or not, and we have to make sure that somebody else knows how to reset the router when we go on vacation.

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One Response

  1. Yes It needs a backup. My husband and me also in IT as software engineer. We both are working in this filed from last 5 years. But still we can’t give surity of one day like last year company fires lot of people because of recession.

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