What do we do in the holidays?
Recently throughout the pandemic, I’ve been reminding people that not just teachers work in schools and that there is a wide range of other professionals who work there.
Indeed, during school holidays these crucial members of staff are often in and continuing to improve systems and estates for teachers and pupils on their return.
And whilst I am seeing our helpdesk getting busier during the holidays as devices and cloud allow people to work when and where suits – this is a marked change from before remote access, when IT was just not used in the holidays!
So, what do IT staff actually do in school holidays?
Well, it’s actually our busiest period. It’s when we do projects that we can’t do in term time because downtime etc is required. We are actually incredibly lucky to get large periods when systems and areas are not used – certainly that doesn’t happen in industry.
That being said, with our focus on anywhere, anytime any device systems – enabling teachers and staff to work where and when suits them – the availability of systems is becoming ever more important and maintenance windows are being limited. Although, I recently took over a school that had a tech who insisted on a 2 week network switch off. Literally, everything was switched off, including email?!?
Anyway, what we do:
- Update, upgrade or replace servers – could be hardware or the software on it
- Install new hardware – devices, Wi-Fi networks, projectors and TVs
- Install windows updates
- Catch up on tickets!
- Training & CPD
And as such, the time on the run up to a holiday, and on return is often the busiest – supporting and planning for new systems.
Holidays are also a great time for technicians to do something different. It’s one of the huge benefits of working in our industry, that you get 13 weeks a year where your role totally changes – and you can be working on new technologies or developing your skills.
As we move more and more to cloud – availability is king. The days of holiday projects are not numbered yet – but if we don’t have to deploy updates or setup systems (intune auto pilot) then we may well see the continued rise of supporting users through holidays rather then the exciting projects we get to do now 🤔😞