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What to do when an employee breaks his laptop?

By djoubert ·
I am the Tech Coordinator at a small, private elementary school. The faculty received laptops recently for use in and out of the classrooms. One of the teachers dropped his, which has essentially fried the laptop. My IT guy took parts from other laptops and put everything together so it would work. That's not the problem.

My question is: how do we make it so the teachers USE the laptops (aren't afraid of dropping them) but are still held responsible for any damage done? Does anyone have a procedure they use or some protocol they have?

Any help would be appreciated.

Doug Joubert
Christian Brothers School
NOLA

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Not give them new ones

by SPC_TCOL In reply to What to do when an employ ...

It's easy with us here.
You break it, you won't get a new one.

I use my private Netbook every day at work and at home and I never dropped it.

If they can't take care of the schools equipment, don't give them some.

This works fine with everybody in my Department

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Question

by ---TK--- In reply to What to do when an employ ...

Why use laptops? Why not put desktops in each room with roaming profiles set up? Or use Cans (HDD in a metal container, with a slot in the PC to put it into) Each "can" has their OS and personal files on it (but you would have to have all the same make and model PC's... Or you could look into thin clients...

Maybe strike up a deal with vendor...

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Use desktops

by TechTeach_z In reply to Question

Very few teachers need laptops anyway. We use desktops with roaming profiles, the costs are far lower. Only admins, who actually get paid to work at home and after hours, are given laptops. If a teacher wants to use their own laptop, we will allow access to the wireless network and printers as long as their antivirus is up to date, and even install and maintain antivirus if they want it.

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Well if they get angry and

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to What to do when an employ ...

break it over a colleagues head or throw it on the floor and jump up and down on it, then you have options.

If you want to make them responssible for accidental damage, then short of remunerating them accordingly, you are going to be told stick the equiipment and the job where the sun doesn't shine. You'd deserve it too.

What's next a disciplinary because they over used the pencil sharpener, sheesh.

They weren't given the laptops as some sort of present, but to get more work done better and more efficiently. If they aren't being rewarded for that, then they can't sensibly be penalised as well.

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Treat like other equipment

by DMambo In reply to What to do when an employ ...

Treat the PC's as you would other equipment. Apply the same policy. If the teacher accidentally knocked over a microwave oven in the break room, what's the policy? I would think that there needs to be a certain level of trust, but if the behavior is repeated, then the documentation needs to begin.

Consider getting an insurance policy or get warranty coverage that covers damage when you buy the equipment.

We had a salesman here who had been asking for a new notebook for a few months, but was denied. One day when he was on the road, he left his old one on top of his car and drove off. When it slid off the car in traffic, it was run over by another car. Short of accusing him of purposely destroying property, there was little alternative other than set him up with a new one. His boss made it clear that his "new" PC would be from the ones available in the IT dept and not a new purchase. It wasn't much of an upgrade.

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Buy rugged laptops

by Oz_Media In reply to What to do when an employ ...

I sold a few hundred to the BC School Districts for the same reason.

ITronix -General Dynamics (designer of the original Hummer) http://www.gd-itronix.com/ makes the best, Panasonic makes a toughbook that's pretty good too.

They can toss them around, wash them off under a hose and just about anythign else you can think of. The initial cost is a lot higher than a basic laptop, but the savings in replacement parts/notebooks quickly outweighs initial costs.

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High risk?

by SPC_TCOL In reply to Buy rugged laptops

We are talking about a school environment.
I don't know in what school you work, but I can't see why someone in a school needs an toughtbook in the first place.

The teachers here that have a Laptop have it here to work at home with it. When they drop it, and it gets damaged, to bad, they can use there private one as well or use there desktop in there office.

Maybe next time you will start to buy them new cars, to make sure they have the safest model on the market.

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I submit

by santeewelding In reply to High risk?

That you are a tool unto technology.

Your comment, owing to the barreness of technology, of which you are a tool, completely misses djoubert's plaint, (his) which, in turn, misses the point.

No procedure or protocol will do. Not even that of my good friend, Oz, bless his technological soul.

I, too, was long ago met with destruction of my physical plant. I found, as you and others here apparently have not, that the answer lies within the heart.

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Our policy is

by boxfiddler Moderator In reply to What to do when an employ ...

the first replacement is on us. It happens again to the same user, the user pays to replace it whether they ever use it again or not.

We also provide protective carrying cases for our laptops and cellphones.

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Extended Care Program

by TheChas In reply to What to do when an employ ...

Let's face it, you have a situation where there is a high risk that any of the laptops could suffer physical damage.

While I would not do this for my personal laptop or for most business users, I recommend that you purchase the deluxe full up extended care package that includes physical damage coverage.

If a teacher has a damaged laptop, give them a desktop as the replacement while the laptop is being repaired. That should be enough incentive to promote safe handling of the laptops.

Then, draw up a policy that the users must sign when they are assigned their laptops. The policy should detail all aspects of proper care and allowed usages of the systems. Including any limits the school wants to place on personal use and web browsing. Under handling, list in detail the number of "accidental" physical damage that will be repaired without consequence. Define clearly that willful mishandling will result in charges for repairs and / or loss of the laptop.

Chas

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