Pros: hour long lunches, 401k, hsa, free phone, free certification classes to help advance career
Cons: no other after hour coverage, medical plan
A typical day at work is fast moving, which is nice. We support a lot of older hardware, with AIX, Linux, Windows Server 2000, Windows Server 2003, a lot of these servers are between 9 and 11 years old so verifying backups, checking status of fans, hard drives, sysplanar boards, RAM failures, battery backups are done in the morning. This takes about – more... an hour to an hour and half to go through this equipment list since there are about 140 servers in the field.
I have learned a lot about AIX and Linux and how it ties in with our serial equipment. We have a lot of locations running Port Server II 16's which connect our serial devices in stores to an HP or IBM tower in one of our data centers elsewhere. Troubleshooting this equipment has been quite fun because it's something not a lot of people know about and it uses old UNIX commands. I have also programmed PSC Falcon 320 scanners for our inventory equipment using the Falcon Flash Configuration Utility and UPG 2.51 to put our software on these scanners. The scanners use old DOS commands, so navigating around these reminds me of the days of Windows 3.1.1 a bit.
I am really project oriented and I get along great with the management. I have had several managers over the course of four years I have been with the company and every manager I have gotten along great with, and they have liked me. The one characteristic I think the managers and I have liked has been the "go-gettem" attitude I have. I believe this is why when there is a challenging project that needs to get done in a timely manner management looks to me.
My co-workers are friendly and they always have a smile on their faces. They have a great knack for welcoming people in the morning, and coming back from lunch. They have a real enthusiasm for helping those around them and reaching out to people in our field locations to get their equipment up and running.
I would say the hardest part of the job for me has been having to many irons in the fire. There are a lot of projects that need to get taken care of, for instance I may be walking someone in one of our field office locations on replacing a hard drive in a server when another server goes down in the field, or someone comes up and needs seven inventory scanners up and running when I am converting a store over from having a server in their office to working on a Port Server II 16 that is coming into one of our data centers. We used to have a team for handling these types of situations, but now we do not. The diamond in the rough here is the day goes by fast, and I figure out better ways to prioritize the critical situations.
The most enjoyable part of my job is the satisfaction in stepping out of work at the end of the day, stretching out my arms, and thinking about what a great accomplishment it was to finish one of the projects I was working on. I also like to reflect on how far I got on other projects and where I want to get the next day. I enjoy working on servers and their applications, but I also like the fact that I can go and work on the same hardware in my server room and build labs for complicated situations in the field. The flexibility of this part of my job is great. – less