Make Sure your IT Workers get the Break they Deserve
Picture this: you’re the coach for your sons’ high school baseball team, and its playoff time. Your starting pitcher has been playing very well all game when all of a sudden he throws his arm out on a pitch and can no longer play. What do you do? Are you prepared to replace him? Of course you are! Any good coach would have had the next pitcher warming up for a long time now because you never know when you’re going to need him. You should treat the IT personnel in your business like you would treat your pitcher in a baseball game. Have a back-up in place with the tools needed to pick up where your IT help left off. When your IT professional has to step out of the work place for some reason or another, it’s hard for them to fully leave their work behind with them since things are always changing and someone needs to be there to take care of things. For that reason, you need to make sure there are things in place to help the next person up (someone like us) preform at their full potential.
Make sure documentation is up to date.
Make sure instructions and details about your network are up to date so that the person stepping in to relieve your IT staff is informed on the situation they are coming into. Everything should be explained properly and thoroughly so the personnel switch is smooth and seamless. Have the employee that is leaving send you a detailed report about what they are working on and how things are going. Share this information with the replacement, so that everyone is aware on what is happening in the organization.
The processes should be written down for the relief.
Have instructions written out in a step-by-step process for the replacement so they know what they need to do and what their priorities should be. Nobody likes stepping into an unfamiliar situation only to receive no guidance. Not only is it confusing for the replacement, but it will be frustrating for you when the things you expect to be done are not completed. Communication is key, do not leave the relief high and dry.
The relief should have knowledge of your network.
Inform the IT replacement about your networks. Give them a guide as to where things are and how it is organized. If the replacement is already filled in when he arrives at the workplace you will not have to waste time repeatedly showing them where things are. Familiarize them like they are a member of your company, because until your IT personnel returns they will be.
Having someone fill in for your IT department can be difficult but is necessary if you want your IT staff to enjoy their time off. IT is a 24/7 job and not something that can be left untouched while employees go on vacation. And seriously, let them go on vacation – too many IT staff can’t get away for a real break because there is no strategy in place to make sure that they can leave their cell phone and email at home. That’s why it’s important to have a replacement and recommended that you follow the advice given to make the transition easy for both parties. In baseball, proper preparation for the backup pitcher makes the difference between victory and defeat. In business it is not much different. If you have any further questions or would like to hire us to feel in for your IT staff while they are on vacation don’t hesitate to contact us at 518-320-8906.