Staying ahead of user requiests

I want to stay ahead of my users requests but I spend a lot of time putting out fires. What projects are you working on that you are proud of? What are you doing that is progressive and exciting? How are you meeting or exceeding user’s needs.

I need to spark some ideas and am hoping you can inspire me.

1 Like

I’ve been working on moving us from an older Fibre Channel SAN to a iSCSI SAN/NAS device, which, in addition to providing a lower TCO also simplifies the implementation and should reduce support requests.

I’ve also been working on systematizing systems across campuses - e.g., printers, wireless access points, etc. I’m a fan of homogeneous equipment when possible, less quirks to keep track of.

Still, it is a real challenge to stay ahead of user requests…there are so many I’d like to do but simply don’t have time available to allot to them.

2 Years ago we started conducting what we call IT Lunch & Learn meetings the 3rd Wednesday of every month.
The topics change monthly and I ask staff to provide topics they would like covered.
It could be something they are struggling with, a new software package, anything really.
If little or no feedback is received, then we choose the topics and the invites go out!
Last January we migrated to O365 and we really wanted high adoption rate for using OneDrive since our license gives all users 1TB storage.
We scheduled a meeting (if you want high attendance to the first meeting, serve lunch that day)!
It was well received and OneDrive usage has steadily increased. Some users still have their Dropbox Pro or Business accounts, but we have been pleased with the response.
If you are noticing a high volume of tickets for certain issues, that is definitely an opportunity to bridge the information gap and use an IT Lunch and Learn to do that.
Any new tech, hardware, software, ChMS you deploy are also opportunities to train and re-train staff.
Some sample topics we have covered include:
Home Content Filtering
Email and Calendaring Best Practices
Use Bitly to shorten URL
How to Add Network Printers
How to Configure VPN

  • List item

How to configure and use OneDrive For Business

  • List item

@davidshq Are you replace a business apps san or creative shared edit space san?

Andy - This is a great idea! Thanks!

A little bit of both. It is primarily utilized for video post-production, but also, via a FC-attached server provides general NAS access for general purpose files.

I’ve made the purchase - still working on the install. Went with two (DAS) Dell PV MD1400 units with 48 TB raw each. A Dell PE R730 will serve as an iSCSI head for these two units.

We will have a dedicated 10GbE switch that will run between the Dell PE and the post-production workstations, so while other traffic will be sent to the PE, the post-production workstations will have dedicated network bandwidth.

Goal is to stripe across all drives in both MD’s to provide a decent number of spindles. :slight_smile:

You’re welcome Dave.
What we have found is that staff begin to trust us more and understand why we do some of the things we do in IT. It has really helped strengthen the relationship with our staff because part of our approach was to let our staff know we see our role as a ministry, and we want to partner with them.
Additionally, many issues staff were embarrassed to report or just didn’t know how to do, came out in some of the meetings and we could address them.