7 IT staffer mistakes that bug users

Relations between IT and users aren’t always the best in many companies. That’s not always IT’s fault, but you can give staffers some tips to help make things better.

These are some of the common user support mistakes IT pros should avoid, courtesy of TechRepublic.com:

  1. Forgetting to turn the firewall back on — Some work requires IT to temporarily disable security features. But they must be turned back on as soon as possible. Otherwise, the user will experience more problems down the road — and blame IT for them.
  2. Not documenting — IT departments must keep track of what the help desk does. That’s the only way to spot trends and recurring problems so you can prevent them in the future.
  3. Experimenting on a user’s machine — The department should have dedicated testing machines. Staffers shouldn’t try anything on a user’s computer unless they’re sure it’s going to work — if it doesn’t, it not only wastes IT’s time, but also the user’s.
  4. Pretending to know it all — Some IT pros, especially in the younger generation, hesitate to admit to non-technical staff that they don’t know how to do something. But forging ahead on a fix and trying to learn on the go will more than often than not result in a bigger problem. Tell your staff not to be afraid to ask for help.
  5. Keeping users in the dark — If staffers are just performing routine maintenance, they may not bother to tell users what they’re doing. But when users don’t know what the staffer’s up to, they can get uncomfortable or assume the techie’s investigating some kind of policy violation.
  6. Talking in jargon — IT employees talk in technical terms because it’s what they know. But to users, speaking in jargon can come off as arrogant and cocky.
  7. Rushing out the door — IT’s always busy, but when a staffer fixes a problem, users appreciate when he or she sticks around a few extra moments to make sure it works.