Friday, July 11, 2008

IT vs Users

It is not uncommon to hear these coming from an I.T. professional :

1) "That woman want me to teach her how to insert a pie chart in Excel! Can you believe it???"

2) "I taught the last girl and she left. Now the new girl wants me to teach her again! And she's not even cute!"

3) "That aunty wants me to fix up her wireless network. In her home!"

These are only some of the things I've heard or I have ever said. Although working in the same company we have a responsibility to help fellow colleagues, sometimes you wonder if some of the requests made by users are really necessary.

Inserting a pie chart in Excel? Shouldn't that be something that the user have learnt back in school? Shouldn't the company employ someone who has the simple ability to do such things if it is part of the staff's job requirements? I have questions all the time from users who have questions regarding pivottables and formatting issues in Excel. And I believe this is not a problem unique to my company.

And most of the time, its the female staff who resort to asking the IT staff. It has nothing to do with male superiority though... the male staff are too embarassed to ask (pride at play here) and thus will try to find out for themselves...

Perhaps its a good idea to prepare a "Excel for Dummies" guide for everyone in the company. That will reduce the amount of time my IT department will spend on the phone catering to these users...

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