IT Manager diary: Robert Young (Tuesday)

This week's IT Manager diary follows the week of Robert Young, an MVS systems programmer. Tuesday finds Robert handling some user problems and setting up some emergency network changes.

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.

Read Monday’s installment
5:00 A.M.
Same routine this morning, but before leaving for work, I read a few verses from the Bible. I'm at work around 7:00 and begin going through my e-mail. Later, some representatives from a vendor are onsite to assist with a major product install. I meet them in the lobby and escort them to our area. Then, a problem call comes in. I dispatch it to one of my coworkers.

I work some more on various problems before realizing it's time for our staff meeting. However, because two people are out today and the rest of us are too busy, I cancel the meeting.

10:00 A.M.
I go to the regularly scheduled weekly user meeting. I present my "processor or operating system" question, and the response is as expected. We've been processor-constrained the past couple of months. I go ahead and confirm the schedule with the users: processor first, operating system upgrade second. This meeting lasts a little longer than usual. As our platform grows, more and more user representatives are attending this weekly meeting. This is good.

As I have no 1:00 meeting today, a coworker and I decide to go to lunch offsite. During lunch, we talk about a project we're working on together. This project will enable us to store check images for instant retrieval by our customer service representatives. It touches a lot of OS/390 software, so we want to make sure it is done right.
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1:00 P.M.
After lunch, I get back to my e-mail. I am on call this week, so more of my time is spent on day-to-day problems than in a "normal" week. I spend the rest of the day answering trouble calls, and completing the associated paperwork. Sometimes I wonder if I spend more time completing the paperwork (well, it's online, but it's still "paperwork") for a trouble call than I do resolving the actual problem.

3:00 P.M.
I meet with our network guy to discuss an emergency change for tonight to correct a production problem. He has already circumvented the problem, but we don't want to run with the circumvention for very long. We are in the process of redesigning our network as we move toward a true 24/7 operation. One phase of the network changes went in last weekend. However, a mismatch between hardware and software settings caused an FTP slowdown for large files. It's an easy change to correct it, but it involves stopping production FTP transfers. Our network guy will complete it tonight. The paperwork is in, and we ask for a 30-minute outage.

5:30 P.M.
I'm ready to head home. It's another relaxing drive. After dinner, I get a call from our network guy. He has completed the emergency change successfully. Total outage was 16 minutes. The production workload is on schedule.
If you could eliminate one daily chore that you dread, what would you choose? Post a comment below or send us an e-mail.

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