Fictitious Company’s Support Department
Fictitious Company’s Support team looks after the needs of our customers. It’s composed of about 30 people working between 20 and 40 hours per week, from 10h to 22h Monday to Friday. If the backlog is large, there might be an at-home weekend email shift.
Everyone has a Windows roaming profile. The Windows 7 environments are multilanguage - typically, German,
English, Japanese, Italian, Spanish and French. In addition to the company-supplied and supported Dell desktops, some people also use their personal Mac laptops; these aren’t supported by the IT team.
Where people sit
Physically, the team is located in two areas. There’s a main room for quieter Inbox work, and a smaller phone
room with four stations. People generally sit at the same machine when they work in the main room; for phone
room shifts, people take whichever desk is free.
A varied desktop environment
Because of the variety of information used by Support staff, they’re allowed to set up their own bookmarks, and
the roaming profiles have a limit of 500MB. Furthermore, in case they need to install a plugin for testing with a
customer, about half the team has administrator privilege on the local machines. This is controlled by a group
policy at login. The need for an individualized work environment also shows up in people creating and using email
templates that are language dependent.
Problems commonly encountered
There are problems with the roaming profile technology. It takes a long time for profiles to download to machines;
there are incomplete or failing synchronizations; and there are files on some desktops that keep reappearing despite being deleted each day (zombie files).
When it comes to malware, some people experience very specific viruses on certain machines but not others (despite having the same roaming profile). Quite a few machines are infected with shopping grayware. People try to take care of their desktops by updating Flash and Adobe, but often unwittingly install the Ask toolbar, or McAffee AV.
Please create a written proposal that describes both a great desktop environment experience for our Support
colleagues, and the strategy you’d employ to achieve it. Your proposal’s scope could be local and narrowly focused, or very broad and far-reaching.
We recommend spending no more than 2 hours on this task.
With this task we’re more interested in your technical approach and working style, than to see if you can invent a
system that will solve all problems at any conceivable scale.
The proposal should include at least the following:
· a brief description and analysis of the problems
· who the stakeholders are, and what their requirements are likely to be
· any technologies you would suggest using, or using differently
We’re looking for a proposal which:
· takes a careful/analytical approach
· expresses an understanding of the needs of the various stakeholders
· is technically clear
· leaves room for future development