Have you ever wondered what our Brisbane IT support team does when they’re not sitting around playing computer games waiting for your call? There’s rarely a quiet moment around the garden shed, with a constant stream of support issues, projects and client queries to respond to.
We followed Cameron around for a day to give you a peak into what life is like as part of the Grassroots team.
- Leave home and try not to curse excessively while sitting in traffic for 45 minutes.
- Arrive at our Grassroots IT office and make the strongest coffee that is humanly possible to ingest. Skull coffee!
- Complete my morning checks for all equipment and hardware. Confirm all of our managed IT services client networks and servers are online and that no errors have emerged overnight. Check that backups were successful and that no viruses or threats have appeared that require immediate attention.
- Mentally prepare for the day ahead.
- Check new tickets and complete morning checks for clients. Tickets are what we call ‘new client jobs’ that need a techie to the rescue. They are usually emailed or called in by the client but some register through automatic alerts.
- During my client morning checks two automatic alerts appear registering failed backups. I logon remotely to each client’s server and fix the problem, then initiate an immediate backup for security.
- A red alert ticket appears – a server is offline and no business can last long offline these days. It needs to be handled immediately.
- After confirming that it isn’t a false alarm, I phone the client contact to both notify them and discuss appropriate next steps.
- OOPS client is having a scheduled power outage at their office and forgot to tell us about it. Sigh.
- Look at tickets on the helpdesk and prioritise.
- Find several quick tickets that can be completed easily - a password reset and a permission change. Login to client servers, make changes, update the tickets and close.
- In-house we call these kinds of jobs ‘low hanging fruit’ since for a techie who is immersed in technology all day, some jobs are as easy as plucking low hanging fruit from the tree. It’s nice to close a few jobs quickly and easily early in the day.
- By this stage the rest of the team have arrived and the workday starts in earnest, but not before the coffee machine takes a hammering.
- I start my first assigned ticket for the day - a complete rebuild of a laptop in the workshop. Install windows and configure laptop ready to connect to client's network. It’s amazing how many little fiddly steps are required in rebuilding a computer! Thank goodness for checklists.
- Working a ticket that has been emailed through – a Microsoft Word issue.
- Using the error screenshot sent through by the client, I research the cause of the error and find details of a similar issue. Call client and connect to their computer remotely. Check settings and resolve issue so that Microsoft Word now working correctly.
- Next job is a scheduled on-site job to replace a failing modem.
- With all the necessary research, information and equipment, I drive out to the client premises loving that peak hour is over.
- Arrive on-site and greet client. Ask for a coffee…. NOT!
- Start setting up new modem, configure with clients internet details and configure correct address on router. Replace modem and check all Internet services and email are running correctly.
- Check if there is any other issues the client needs attended to while I am on-site. Yes there is! Fix WiFi connection on laptop and add additional mailbox to users Outlook.
- Head back to office and wonder what to have for lunch. Did I bring lunch? Can’t remember.
- Input notes in the ticket for the on-site job I’ve just completed.
- Solve lunch problem with a salad and a pat on the back for my healthy choices (until tomorrow when I devour the steak sandwich I really want)
- Eat lunch, catch-up on social media and IT news. Is facebook getting more annoying, or is it just me?
- Phones rarely stop ringing around here. I'm usually flat out on the Help desk most afternoons.
- Working on a particularly challenging problem with a client database unable to connect to the internet. After much research and trouble shooting I change settings, test application, and connect to the database successfully. Woot!
- Answer phone call – user cannot login and password not known. Reset.
- Urgent email notification advises there is an error with a client’s Exchange Server (email server). Uncover that free disk space is getting low. Geez it’s a good thing we monitor for these issues so we can fix them before their email broke. Remove logs not required and check disk space again. Presto, back to normal.
- Install software for client. You’d be amazed at some of the dodgy software floating around, so it’s brilliant when a user checks with us first before installing something random!
- Start assigned ticket – new user creation.
- Answer phone call – user cannot send email from Outlook. Recreate users Outlook profile and test by sending email. Now working.
- Receive call from 3rd party support advising resolution to client issue. We regularly work with other support organisations on behalf of our clients, for example, with their photocopier support provider. We often call this ‘vendor management’.
- Every ticket is like an exercise in problem solving. Looking at the problem and researching and testing different possible solutions until I find the fix.
- Check all assigned tickets have been completed or set to correct status. Some will be pending more information from the client or a third party. Schedule tickets not completed to next day and it's home time!
- I have to say my drive home completes what is usually a satisfying day’s work. It feels good to fix things. It feels good to solve problems.