Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Asking IT for support

So many people forget that there is one very important role of themselves when they are asking IT for support. The role of the end user is to explain the problem that they are having and in some cases being the hands and eyes for the IT person.

We ran into a situation a while ago with an end user that would run into a problem and as soon as she had notified us about it, would basically run away. The person didn't want to help solve the problem and in a lot of cases the words we got were “it doesn't work so fix it”. Now the problem with that type of explanation is we have no clue what they were doing or even what the problem really is.

If as an end user you are experiencing an issue, be it with some software or something else with regards to your computer, it's important to communicate effectively with the IT person. It doesn't work makes it very hard to figure out if the actual issue is a computer problem or if the end user is doing something incorrectly. If there is an error message that is popping up, make sure that you tell IT what you were doing when the message popped up because that might help figure out what the problem really is.

In our situation the person just wouldn't be the hands and eyes for us as they had access to the computer and we were not in the same location. It was “it didn't work” and that was it which means that as an IT individual you get frustrated because there really isn't a way to figure out what the problem is without having to go on-site and deal with the computer yourself. If you are asking for help from someone in IT make sure that the problem is clearly explained and you are going to be available to answer the questions that are going to arise.

IT does the best that they can do and of course most IT individuals are not mind readers so we can't know what you were doing when the problem occurred. If remote access isn't part of what has been asked of us, remember, we can't see the screen that you are referring to so some communication is going to be very important. Making sure that as an end user that you can help IT when you say “It doesn't work” will mean that it will probably get fixed a lot faster than if you just throw you hands up and run away.

Asking an IT person for help can sometimes be frustrated because yes you are going to lose a bit of work time but you asked for the help so you need to remember that. IT individuals don't know how every piece of software works even if they have installed it. The IT person is responsible for installing the software and the end user is the one that needs to know all the little bits that make the software work for them.

In our case we did go to site and get the problem resolved which was wonderful. Having the hands and eyes might have made it quicker but that we don't know. Also before you scream that something isn't working do a bit of checking yourself as you might solve the problem without ever calling the IT person.

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