Reply to post: Make life better for yourself

User filed fake trouble tickets to take helpful sysadmin to lunches


Make life better for yourself

Whilst browsing the helpdesk tickets for second line support, I spotted one that should have been accelerated. A user for the test stage of Windows XP to Windows 7 migration had an appalling experience and wished to revert to XP -- not impossible, but horrible for us to implement. The user was an important manager who had been chosen for the stage by a project manager in a misguided attempt to show our competence. In a positive way.

I transferred the ticket to myself and identified that the user had an administrative assistant (i.e. hero in this anecdote). She confirmed that the user struggled with Windows and told me what he needed to do, how he did it and how we (IT services) could make it better for him. We (she and me) arranged for a visit from a different member of the second line support team than the one who had messed up his PC. We picked someone who could perform a technical review and talk about the transition. There was a small backroom team on stand-by to sort out problems. We contrived a special request for a third member of the second line support team to visit his home to ensure that his new laptop worked with his broadband connection and wifi -- and that our user knew how it worked, vaguely.

At a bit of expense, we converted a test user who hated Windows 7 into an advocate. And the admin assistant learned a bit about how to get IT services on her side.

It was an expensive exercise but one that was important to the credibility of a project. Could we have given similar support to other users? On several more occasions, I arranged for senior managers to be treated similarly at work (without home visit). I hope that the lessons I learned were passed down.

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