June 23, 2011

It Burns!

"The computer on 3B in the control room is broken.  I am not sure what happen there is a post it on the monitor that simply says “broken”.
Thank you,"

This is an honest to god email that was sent to the help desk where I work.  Now, before I rake my fingers through my hair and exclaim “Why!  How are we supposed to help with this, exactly?”, let me say that I appreciate this user taking the time to report the problem when the person who stuck the note on it didn’t.  However, I have no idea what to do with this message.  If I respond back saying we need more information, the user can’t tell me what’s wrong.  She’s just the messenger, and probably doesn’t know who put the note on the display.  If I send this as a work order to our field techs, they’re going to complain that there’s not enough information, and possibly send it back to me to do the leg work.  Which, as we’ve previously established, isn’t going to be easy.  I think I’m going to do what my cohort suggested and tell the user to remove the post-it, declare it fixed, and wait for someone to call in the details.  

The moral of the story is, if you find something broken, either fix it or give enough information to the people who can do the work to be useful.  It will save many an IT person’s livers because we won’t be driven to drink as often.

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