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Red-mark day for the Help Desk.

Just got a hilarious call from the KU IT department. Well, it would be hilarious if it weren't so pitiful: On Monday, one of my students was unable to log in to his website via FTP to move some files up there for his class assignment. The Help Desk person responsible called me to ask about it. To give you an idea of her technical depth, here are some snippets from the conversation:

"Do you know what problems he encountered?" she asked.
"He was unable to log in to his FTP program" I answered. (Note that she already knew this, because she had stated it when I answered.)
"How did he get permission to use FTP?" she asked.
"You need to use secure FTP to move files to a KU Web server," I said. "He was trying to upload files to his People site at KU."

I mean, huh? What did these questions have to do with anything? It was about the simplest issue ever: Someone was unable to log in to a secure site. So of course the first thing Help Desk does is call the professor. Um?

Your tax and tuition dollars at work, people.



( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 6th, 2009 07:56 pm (UTC)
The new IT "help" desk is worse than useless and is an embarrassment to the concept of customer service. Get this: they fired/laid off all the competent people (the ones I used to work with) and hired new people to oversee a bunch of untrained students.

Nice, huh?
Nov. 6th, 2009 10:11 pm (UTC)
Well, that explains a lot.
Nov. 6th, 2009 08:35 pm (UTC)
Wow. I think I'd even know better, and I'm a dilettante when it comes to that stuff.
Nov. 6th, 2009 09:09 pm (UTC)
When we get calls from the help desk, it's usually over something they should have called the professor about. Student was unable to access test online - professor has not opened test for access. Student cannot see grades. Professor has not enabled it.

Granted, if they called the professor, there's an 80% chance that professor would then call us to figure out how to solve the problem, but we're not mind readers to know if that professor really wanted that test to be disabled or the grades not to show.
Nov. 6th, 2009 10:12 pm (UTC)
Re: Ironically...
Ha! Incompetence all around.
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:25 pm (UTC)
I hate to say it, but it is rare to find a Help Desk that is any different. That was my everyday life with the Help Desk at work for 8 years. Their job was to sit at a desk all day, enter tickets that contained no useful information and then call or assign it to the wrong person.

It wasn't this bad, but it was still a major irritation.

The reason for the lack of quality was that the jobs required little experience or training and was at the bottom of the IT pay scale, so they didn't really care to be better.

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )