No one knows how hard it is to get a government worker to do something any better than another government worker. We have a printer in our report room for two computers to share. It was connected with a USB cable, and depending on who needs to print, we had to plug the cable into one computer or the other. This printer is also a network capable printer, and I saw no reason why we had to continually move the cable. I pointed this out to the chief one day, and he ordered IT to come out and make the change. So, IT came out about two weeks later, removed the USB cable and plugged it into the city network.

The printer didn’t work. They never installed and mapped the printer on the computers that needed it. Computers sitting right next to the printer. I put in a work order and was told how to map the printer. I didn’t have the administrator privileges to make the changes, and IT is always stuffy about users messing with settings. Everything is locked out on the computers. This is the email I sent, sending a copy to everyone in the chain of command, even the chief:

Ever since IT installed the new printer in the station, the printer has not worked. I contacted IT this morning, and they said that each individual person who uses that computer has to map the printer for their use, or the printer will not work. We have never had to do this before, and I am not sure how workable that solution is, especially considering that we have been told many times that we are not to be making changes to department computers, and cannot make the changes without administrator privileges. Is there a way to get this printer working that does not involve every employee who uses it having to make changes?

IT responded with:

Hey, I have this link for you that installs it. So if you could forward this to anyone who needs it. First delete the printer that is there now. Then you will need to click the link below. You will need to agree or open and it will install for you. The printer que box will pop up once it has installed. All you need to do is close it and you are finished. Call me if you still have an issue. The reason you need to load this is because network printers are per profile not pc. But this link will make it easy for everyone to load.

Of course the link didn’t work. No one had the permissions to use the link. Look, if you are in IT and you fix it so no one can make changes to the computers except you, then don’t be angry when people expect you to actually come out and make those changes. Anyway, I got everyone who uses those computers to send a “Reply to all” that they could mot make it work. After the Chief got about 30 emails on the subject, he finally replied with this:

IT *will* correct this issue so you do NOT have to do what he’s saying….the “shared” printer is supposed to be automatically mapped to all the computers in the station. 

 The problem with all government jobs is that it is too hard to get rid of the dead weight. I say this as a government employee who is constantly frustrated at the things other government employees get away with.

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1 Comment

TOTWTYTR · October 10, 2010 at 10:01 pm

That's not a government worker problem as much as it's an IT worker problem. People in the private sector have the same exact problems as we do in the public sector with their IT people.

There seems to be no end to the BS that IT people can give their "customers".

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