Dump it on IT; They’ll Take Anything: the Mikey Approach


Today I wasted an hour in a meeting on creating our emergency response center. Yesterday, I wasted an hour in a mass notification system meeting. On Monday, I wasted an hour in a meeting about our new survey software. All of these hours were wasted because the people in charge of these projects did not understand their responsibilities. Each is hoping that IT will just take over the project so he can (a) not do work and (b) blame it on us when it goes awry. Just because we run the systems does not mean we manage the content! I understand the difficulty in separating the medium from the message, but if we don’t draw some limits on our involvement we will end up failing everyone.

Current examples: asking IT to form a “calendar committee” to present an event calendaring solution rather than bringing together the administrative staff who actually manage calendar events; asking the IT staff to present on survey software options rather than actually reading the vendor RFP replies; asking me what size generator I need for our emergency response center when you have no building or use program for the facility–when you have no agreement on how the facility will be used.

5 Responses to “Dump it on IT; They’ll Take Anything: the Mikey Approach”

  1. rufusb said:

    Jul 11, 08 at 6:15 am

    I especially like when people ask us about how the phones work or how to unjam the copier. When did IT folks become the handymen of the organization? I guess I missed that meeting 😉

  2. kdghty said:

    Jul 11, 08 at 11:59 am

    rufusb – if it plugs in, it’s IT… 😉

    in a meeting the other day it came up that professor A did not know professor B, even though they are both on faculty at the same school. it was rather frightening – I felt it veered very close to someone suggesting that IT should sponsor weekly mixers.

  3. Kyle said:

    Jul 11, 08 at 5:23 pm

    I swear you and I have the same job separated by the great plains. When I got here IT was in charge of doing surveys (that included writing them), doing all the data analysis for the institution (even though we have an institutional research office). We’ve managed to sluff off the surveys and data analysis, but our Academic Dean now thinks I don’t want to do any work (because her area should be doing this stuff). Don’t even get me started on where the functional expertise should be for our ERP, card system, security system, reporting, etc.

    I still have a problem with the web content (which folks assume IT is in charge of), and emergency communications has almost become mine three times. I’m amazed the number of ways I can say “no” and have people still like me.

    I have come to the realization that most of our staff are functionally computer illiterate, so they try and foist everything on IT so they don’t have to learn anything new.

    Yup, it’s been one of those days. I will now move to the next post and stop whining for the weekend. ‘-)

  4. rufusb said:

    Jul 14, 08 at 6:09 am

    One last question to the group: Why is “I just don’t know computers’ still an acceptable answer from a worker in the 21st century? I have had two separate experiences at this institution where a person was hired as an administrative assistant and they knew NOTHING about computers. How is this possible?

  5. admin said:

    Jul 14, 08 at 2:10 pm

    Who did the hiring? And yes, what does that mean to know NOTHING about computers. Personally, I think they’re lying. Also, see today’s post for a possible answer.

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