Richard Artes, Senior Administrator:
There is no typical day in IT. One day I am meeting potential suppliers of a new solution, showing them around a school and discussing the options. The next day I can be investigating why a lift telephone doesn’t work, or cleaning a server room, or upgrading a firewall, or installing an intercom. Investigating e-mail routing issues, testing windows updates or installing a new server. Replacing a broken hard disk, upgrading a fiber link or installing a new wifi access point. Applying for new security certificates, installing a new telephone or a new switch. Covering for colleagues on holiday means I get to do something different to a normal day, like backups or helpdesk tasks.
The list is endless!
Network and server skills are essential for me. That means Microsoft and Cisco training, exams and experience. Also a desire to learn new technologies and apply the learning. IT changes every 4 or 5 years, so we get new technology in quite often.
What is the biggest challenge?
Co-ordinating suppliers, contractors, teachers, heads, concierges, managers and the team to get a project completed. And, often in the holidays there are a lot of people away so decisions have to be deferred and payments are late. Holidays for teachers means an opportunity for us to replace, upgrade or renew, hopefully with no impact when they return.