This week, IT Manager Republic will feature the daily diary of Robert Young, an MVS Systems Programmer for Capital One in Richmond, VA. He is the technical leader for the OS/390 support team.
I'm at work by 6:40 today. I spend the first hour catching up on e-mail and voice mail. At 7:45, I meet with my manager for about a half hour. Then it's back to the "daily grind" of problem resolution and general support. Later, my team members all get together for a change control meeting. It's at this meeting where all the weekend changes are discussed and scheduled. After the meeting, I finish catching up on my e-mail.
On Wednesdays, depending on my schedule, I try to get out for lunch to meet with some friends and coworkers from previous jobs. Today looks good, so I can make it for lunch. It's nice to compare notes with sysprogs from other shops. I believe this type of networking is essential.
Today, the talk is mainly about a bank merger my friends are going through. Last weekend was the official merger, and they are still dealing with some fallout. Today was actually the first day they had time to get out for lunch.
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Throughout the rest of the day, I have a series of informal, unscheduled meetings with coworkers just to go over what everyone's working on. We have a good team here, and a lot of work is getting done. We are in the middle of a number of major projects: the imaging project, the network redesign, the processor upgrades, and the operating system upgrade. In addition to all of this, we are developing a production-level UNIX on OS/390 and a Web server on OS/390.
After a few more minor on-call problems, I get a chance to look into an outstanding request to check on a problem with a production job that went down. The error messages indicate a possible problem with a vendor product. After looking at the problem for a couple of minutes, I find the cause—the input file is empty. When I report this to the production control guy, he realizes immediately what happened and how to fix it. In fact, he apologizes for not having found it himself. My response is "No problem. We're all on the same team!" I think that's a key to Capital One's success—working as a team.
After I answer a few more e-mails, I head for home. It's just after 5:00.
This week’s diary author, Robert Young, typically arrives to work before 7 A.M. so that he can work only four days a week. What kind of hours do you keep? Post a comment below or send us an e-mail.