Helpdesk really sucks...

djhss68djhss68 Posts: 205Member
I only spent about 3 days at my new helpdesk position before I got out. Just couldn't take it. The training experience was horrible and just made me completely lost. Basically all they did was give me a headset and allow me to listen in on calls, which I'm not sure how I can learn that way but that was their approach. I would've preferred if they got me at my own station right away and took me step by step through the ticketing process and how to use all the software and utilities they have but that didn't happen.

The person training me would actually be chatting on AIM and text on his cell phone while in the middle of a call. Sort of seemed unprofessional to me. icon_rolleyes.gif

Anyway, I realized I really can't sit at a desk and take phone calls for 8 hours straght. I need to be more active and hands on. I'm just wondering if it's going to be more difficult to find something like this at entry level.
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Comments

  • rsuttonrsutton Posts: 1,029Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    What you described is generally referred to as Technical Support. Help Desk is generally on site help for internal employees. These two lines can blur in some orginizations. If qualified, I recommend looking for a Help Desk job; you will probably find it more interesting than phone support.
  • bellheadbellhead Posts: 120Member
    djhss68 wrote: »
    I only spent about 3 days at my new helpdesk position before I got out. Just couldn't take it. The training experience was horrible and just made me completely lost. Basically all they did was give me a headset and allow me to listen in on calls, which I'm not sure how I can learn that way but that was their approach. I would've preferred if they got me at my own station right away and took me step by step through the ticketing process and how to use all the software and utilities they have but that didn't happen.

    The person training me would actually be chatting on AIM and text on his cell phone while in the middle of a call. Sort of seemed unprofessional to me. icon_rolleyes.gif

    Anyway, I realized I really can't sit at a desk and take phone calls for 8 hours straght. I need to be more active and hands on. I'm just wondering if it's going to be more difficult to find something like this at entry level.


    Usually that's the way most jobs start. You shadow somebody for a couple of weeks, then after learning the process a little they will give you small jobs. What did you expect? be thrown to the wolves on the first day? Most places have a formal training process. Call centers suck no matter what level you are at, but they are a source of experience.
  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAPosts: 5,735Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    I started out doing Help Desk for my first job. It is where most everyone starts out. It gives you front line experience for trouble coming to Desktop Support / Network Administration. It is very important for a good IT department to try an fix most problems before they get elevated to Desktop Support Technicians and Network Administrators.

    To answer your question anything is possible but most start out at the Help Desk level in my experience.
    Currently working on: Linux and Python
  • joey74055joey74055 Posts: 216Member
    Sounds like you were working for some sort of call center. You want to work helpdesk for a company where you are the employees support, where you setup new users, deply PC's, troubleshoot network/phone/fax/printer problems. Not support where you are speaking with consumers/customers.
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    djhss68 wrote: »
    The person training me would actually be chatting on AIM and text on his cell phone while in the middle of a call. Sort of seemed unprofessional to me. icon_rolleyes.gif

    Any more unprofessional than going through the hiring process and throwing in the towel after 3 days?

    djhss68 wrote:
    Anyway, I realized I really can't sit at a desk and take phone calls for 8 hours straght. I need to be more active and hands on. I'm just wondering if it's going to be more difficult to find something like this at entry level.

    Is this company strictly a call center? Or do they have other departments with IT staff that provide more hands on experience? If they have other IT staff and you are strictly the phone staff that escalates calls to the proper unit, then I would have to say I think you made a bad decision to leave. If there was a possibility that through hard work that you would be able to transition over to another role after a while, I would have stuck around. It's just part of the phase of maturing into a more hands on position like you desire for many of us.

    Even if it was strictly a call center position, but was still exposing you to troubleshooting and customer service skills, you should have stuck around at least until you could find something else. It would still be experience, and it would still be a paycheck.
  • L0gicB0mb508L0gicB0mb508 Posts: 538Member
    I do agree that maybe you should have stuck it out to get some experience and a paycheck. The job may suck, but it will help your analytical skills later in life. You'll find that you can solve bigger scale problems when you learn how to troubleshoot effectively.

    Helpdesk does suck as a job, but it does indeed help out in the long run. Good luck on whatever you decide to do.
    I bring nothing useful to the table...
  • networker050184networker050184 Posts: 11,962Mod Mod
    Any more unprofessional than going through the hiring process and throwing in the towel after 3 days?

    There is nothing unprofessional about leaving a job that doesn't work out. That is why most positions have a 90 day evaluation period. Its for both the employer and employee to ensure they got what they expected and want for the position.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    There is nothing unprofessional about leaving a job that doesn't work out. That is why most positions have a 90 day evaluation period. Its for both the employer and employee to ensure they got what they expected and want for the position.

    I would typically agree, however 3 days without making it past training is a bit premature to me.
  • networker050184networker050184 Posts: 11,962Mod Mod
    I would typically agree, however 3 days without making it past training is a bit premature to me.

    I don't see the point of staying any longer than to realize the job isn't what you want. Leading them on thinking you are going to stay just to get a paycheck is a lot more unprofessional IMO.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • skrpuneskrpune Posts: 1,409Member
    djhss68 wrote: »
    I only spent about 3 days at my new helpdesk position before I got out. Just couldn't take it. The training experience was horrible and just made me completely lost. Basically all they did was give me a headset and allow me to listen in on calls, which I'm not sure how I can learn that way but that was their approach. I would've preferred if they got me at my own station right away and took me step by step through the ticketing process and how to use all the software and utilities they have but that didn't happen.

    The person training me would actually be chatting on AIM and text on his cell phone while in the middle of a call. Sort of seemed unprofessional to me. icon_rolleyes.gif

    Anyway, I realized I really can't sit at a desk and take phone calls for 8 hours straght. I need to be more active and hands on. I'm just wondering if it's going to be more difficult to find something like this at entry level.
    The listen-in approach is typical for phone-based help desk training. When I was up for a help desk job, I actually was asked to sit in and listen in on some calls during the interview. What they want to do is have you observe how different types of calls are handled so you can get a feel for how things work without throwing you to the lions on day one. Unless you've gone through structured training, I think this is a great way to give someone an intro to things without impacting the customer's experience.

    I agree with others here who say it sounds like you're looking more for tech support than help desk, although the definitions for those positions aren't set in stone. My suggestion would be to ask a ton of questions before taking your next job so you know what it is you're getting into - find out what the typical day is like, how phone support is handled/shared, etc.
    Currently Studying For: Nothing (cert-wise, anyway)
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  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Posts: 1,480Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I don't see the point of staying any longer than to realize the job isn't what you want. Leading them on thinking you are going to stay just to get a paycheck is a lot more unprofessional IMO.

    Good point, you looked at it in a different perspective than I did and after looking at it that way your logic works better. I still might have researched (and maybe they did) to see if there would be an opportunity to move up and if it was something I was willing to tolerate (the dislike of a phone job) for some time before moving up. At least now they know what they don't care to do so they can focus on what they would prefer to do moving into the future.
  • tpatt100tpatt100 Posts: 2,989Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I started on help desk I think most people do. I did the shadow thing for a while, its smart just to keep your mouth closed and observe and ask questions and take notes when needed. Eventually when you get comfortable you can multi task like AIM and texting while on a call. Even today while updating our AV servers I am watching Lost on Hulu :)

    But in my situation I was help desk just for a 13 floor government facility. Call volume was only heavy in the morning, after lunch I would study for certs or do my college coursework. Projects were given to me by sys admins when they became swamped and I moved up from there.

    If this was a call center for Dell supporting home users though I would have set myself on fire.
  • arwesarwes Posts: 633Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    I don't see the point of staying any longer than to realize the job isn't what you want. Leading them on thinking you are going to stay just to get a paycheck is a lot more unprofessional IMO.

    True. We had a guy start work, go to lunch and never come back. He didn't like that he had to share an office and he didn't have a leather chair. I'm glad he left instead of whining incessantly about his office myself. :D
    [size=-2]Started WGU - BS IT:NDM on 1/1/13, finished 12/31/14
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  • sidsanderssidsanders Posts: 217Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    so what are you going to do now?
    GO TEAM VENTURE!!!!
  • KaminskyKaminsky Posts: 1,235Member
    arwes wrote: »
    True. We had a guy start work, go to lunch and never come back. He didn't like that he had to share an office and he didn't have a leather chair. I'm glad he left instead of whining incessantly about his office myself. :D

    My first IT job was as an administrator. Great I thought until I found out it was as an office administrator. Wondered why they kept giving me odd looks when I talked about computers at the interview.

    Go to lunchtime and I went and got my old job back working in the kitchen that afternoon.
    Kam.
  • mrgetdown88mrgetdown88 Posts: 43Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    LMAO Sounds like you came to my job, that's hilarious. But yeah I'm a young 23, I work in a call center or Technology Support Center(whatever tickles your fancy) and what you described was the exact experience when you come here on your first day. All we do is IM and chat with each other the whole day to help pass the time or watch TV or surf the internet. But it sounds like you saw all the cons before realizing any of the pros. Here we support some random Gov't facility (which i refuse to name for my own security purposes) and you get access to a lot of proprietary systems as well as you get to do some usual daily network administration. Plus, when it gets slow (like today) I have plenty of time to work on my certs. The first 3 weeks here go like this: Week 1--Shadow and observe how different calls are handled, Week 2--Get your access and have someone observe your work, Week 3--Work alone and learn how to half ass. Its easy stuff, and you learn some useful skills, have a little fun (as long as you get along with everyone). And after you do a solid year, you're usually eligible to move up to other advanced positions. I just took a LAN admin. position and ive only been here 8 mos. Plus, its a steady paycheck which is useful in this economy. Personally, i think you shouldve stuck it out at least a week before placing judgement. But hey, To each its own. Hopefully, you come across something you like, but just remember, everything in IT aint gold!! :)
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  • WilliamK99WilliamK99 Posts: 278Member
    Here is the problem I have with people entering the tech field. Most do not want to start at the entry level. What you described was an entry level position. You need experience as well as skills to proceed to the more advanced level. Sure it may seem tedious or boring, but it will help on your resume....

    When you have little to no experience, you have to take what you can get...
  • djhss68djhss68 Posts: 205Member
    Some would speak very badly about callers with their mics muted when they got frustrated. At one point my trainer muted his mic and yelled out "you f^%*ng b&%ch" because the woman was having trouble doing what he instructed. Needless to say, his soft skills were crap as well. Always geting frustrated with callers and speaking to them in a condescending tone when things didn't go smoothly.

    I just wondered why I was being trained by what were basically my peers and not my the manager. It's not like they were super busy. Some would take a 5 minute call and have 10, sometimes 15 minutes of downtime in between. I think I can rule out call centers now.
  • tpatt100tpatt100 Posts: 2,989Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    WilliamK99 wrote: »
    Here is the problem I have with people entering the tech field. Most do not want to start at the entry level. What you described was an entry level position. You need experience as well as skills to proceed to the more advanced level. Sure it may seem tedious or boring, but it will help on your resume....

    When you have little to no experience, you have to take what you can get...

    Amen, help desk sounded better than listing my hardware store sales assistant on my resume.
  • djhss68djhss68 Posts: 205Member
    sidsanders wrote: »
    so what are you going to do now?
    I can afford to be out of work for a bit of time. I'm 22 and live with my parents right now. All I have is a cell phone bill to pay and I have plenty of money in the bank to keep my afloat. I do have a company I interviewed with last Friday that hopefully will bring me in for a second interview. For some simple Field Tech work. I gave them a call today and they said they are still interviewed candidates. icon_thumright.gif
  • tenroutenrou Posts: 108Member
    I don't want to put a dampener on what you want to do but you will have to do telephone support in some sense, particularly early in your career. Very few people are lucky enough to avoid it.

    The best thing you could do if you want to avoid it is take the 1 and 2 week contracts that no-one else wants. You're not going to make a great deal of money doing this though.
  • bellheadbellhead Posts: 120Member
    djhss68 wrote: »
    Some would speak very badly about callers with their mics muted when they got frustrated. At one point my trainer muted his mic and yelled out "you f^%*ng b&%ch" because the woman was having trouble doing what he instructed. Needless to say, his soft skills were crap as well. Always geting frustrated with callers and speaking to them in a condescending tone when things didn't go smoothly.

    I just wondered why I was being trained by what were basically my peers and not my the manager. It's not like they were super busy. Some would take a 5 minute call and have 10, sometimes 15 minutes of downtime in between. I think I can rule out call centers now.


    That's why they are the boss. :D:D:D:D Usually the there will have one person they trust to do the training to insure everything is uniform for everybody coming in.


    Did you finish college yet?
  • thomas130thomas130 Posts: 184Member
    I know about hating the helpdesk

    To be honest I was train by anyone I was thrown on the helpdesk etc lol. But the main thing was that I was smart enough to learn for myself 2 years later I am better than most of the first line support and have gain qualification they have none. Now they come to be asking for my help lol

    Now I am trusted to do second line work I solely responsible to builds, project work, I even have to look after all the board directorz. Not something I really enjoyed but it shows they have confidence in me that I know what I am doing.

    Within the 8 months I will my ccna and mcse I have just gained my HNC earlier this year and have my degree in two years. So I will be leaving hopefully next year for a better position there also been talked about my taking over the networking job which I would do.

    My advice is just get three years experience and certs then you can go for better positions.


    Good luck
  • XenzXenz Posts: 140Member
    I would typically agree, however 3 days without making it past training is a bit premature to me.

    I got hired to work for a company that was looking for help a few years back (I was 16 or 17 I think). I thought it was a bench job fixing computers as they said in their ad. The owners of the shop didn't speak much English (they were Korean), but I figured it didn't matter. They asked if I could fix computers, I said yes, and they offered me the job. I was happy with that, this could be a dream job for me.

    I got there my first day thinking they'd throw me into the stack of laptops they had sitting there. The job they wanted me to do was pull parts in their warehouse. It was not the job I was hired on to do, but I figured what the hell I'll try it. It had 0 lights, everything was thrown into bins 4'x4'. They had hardware, software, even clothes in this place. No problem, I'll do this and maybe they'll let me come up to the front office and work on computers eventually.

    Then I get the floor map of this place from the guy who can speak 3 words in English, the floorplans are written in something that wasn't English, the boxes were marked in something not English, and the bins when I finally found the right ones were not organized at all. ISA with PCI cards and whatnot. I stayed there for the day trying to quickly learn their language and their floorplans. At the end of the day I left, told them they didn't need to pay me for the day since I had spent the day trying to match the symbols on the paper to the bins and told them I would not be coming back. Total time employed, 6 hours.

    Best job ever...
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  • blargoeblargoe Self-Described Huguenot NC, USAPosts: 4,171Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    tenrou wrote: »
    The best thing you could do if you want to avoid it is take the 1 and 2 week contracts that no-one else wants. You're not going to make a great deal of money doing this though.
    Living at home this would be a great option. But the job you walked out on, to me, sounded like somewhere you could shine early on based on what you said about your peers.
    IT guy since 12/00

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  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned ■■■■■■■■□□
    I spent three years doing a job I hated to get where I am now. Suck it up.

    Oh, and "Helpdesk" reminds me of your mom. Heyoooo!
  • thomas130thomas130 Posts: 184Member
    dynamik wrote: »
    I spent three years doing a job I hated to get where I am now. Suck it up.

    Oh, and "Helpdesk" reminds me of your mom. Heyoooo!


    LOL

    As I said earlier just put up with it

    I'm on the helpdesk which I think is crap but I am currently doing my degree hopefully I will have my ccna in October. I will then work on my mcse and vmware and my website skills. This should all be done in slightly over two years and then I can leave for something better I am hoping to get a job in a school where I can get a chance to do everything.

    But mate your going to have do the helpdesk to do something better it's like a car your first one is **** and then you go for something better.

    Also like girls your first one is ugly and then you go for someone better looking with experience. At least this is what I have been told I have had none.
  • SRTMCSESRTMCSE Posts: 249Member
    Probably should've sucked it up, it takes a long time to get a decent job in IT and I imagine it's even harder now than it was when I got started (going on 6 years). I worked for $6 an hour for nearly a year (19 at the time) doing grunt work (inventory IT books, moving computers, imaging PCs, hauling water bottles, stocking fridges w/ soda...yea I know, weird) for an IT training school, left there after a year and a half making $9.50. But I learned a lot and got a bunch of certs, made a lot of contacts. Nearly 6 years later I'm a systems engineer in NYC, make nearly 6 figures and I'm only 25.

    But in between that crappy paying position, I had other positions where I was making crap and didn't like a lot of it, but I made the best out of it, gleaned what I could. In hindsight that first job I made the most memories, still friends w/ a lot of the guys I worked w/ and thankful for the stuff I picked up while I was there.

    In the interest of full disclosure, I did walk off one job (after 2 weeks), "support" for network solutions, only because it was nothing like I was led to believe in the interview and they never mentioned upselling which they said wasn't "technically" required but actually was.
  • mrgetdown88mrgetdown88 Posts: 43Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Xenz wrote: »
    I got hired to work for a company that was looking for help a few years back (I was 16 or 17 I think). I thought it was a bench job fixing computers as they said in their ad. The owners of the shop didn't speak much English (they were Korean), but I figured it didn't matter. They asked if I could fix computers, I said yes, and they offered me the job. I was happy with that, this could be a dream job for me.

    I got there my first day thinking they'd throw me into the stack of laptops they had sitting there. The job they wanted me to do was pull parts in their warehouse. It was not the job I was hired on to do, but I figured what the hell I'll try it. It had 0 lights, everything was thrown into bins 4'x4'. They had hardware, software, even clothes in this place. No problem, I'll do this and maybe they'll let me come up to the front office and work on computers eventually.

    Then I get the floor map of this place from the guy who can speak 3 words in English, the floorplans are written in something that wasn't English, the boxes were marked in something not English, and the bins when I finally found the right ones were not organized at all. ISA with PCI cards and whatnot. I stayed there for the day trying to quickly learn their language and their floorplans. At the end of the day I left, told them they didn't need to pay me for the day since I had spent the day trying to match the symbols on the paper to the bins and told them I would not be coming back. Total time employed, 6 hours.

    Best job ever...

    Awesome story...
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    Working towards 70-291 and CCNA
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    "Consider yourselves lucky I'm not after your gully holes..."
  • djhss68djhss68 Posts: 205Member
    Well, I think I lucked out here. I just got a call for a job I applied for last week and they want to bring me on as a hardware field tech. Just basic diagnosing and break/fix work. It's only part-time but more along the lines of what I was looking for.
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