It's a well-defined process. What could go wrong?

It's a few years back, and this IT pilot fish is placed by a recruiter into a family-owned company with some, well, let's call them traditional ways.

"I had to run a conversion/repair job one night, so I asked about the 'run a special job' procedure," says fish.

"I was shocked. The procedure was: (1) Open the forms binder and find the appropriate request in its clear page protector.

"(2) Remove the page, including the protector.

"(3) Use the attached grease pencil to write down the job particulars.

"(4) Don't make a photocopy, because the grease gets on the copy glass.

"(5) Walk the form down the block to the operations center.

"(6) Operator performs the request.

"(7) Operator wipes the page protector clean.

"(8) The cleared form is put in the mail back to the development shop.

"(9) Form is put back into the binder the next morning.

"So I put the request in, telling them to run it after the online applications are down. Since the operator didn't want to stay that late, he went ahead and ran it before I managed to get back to my desk.

"Of course, by then we had a major outage..."

You can act on Sharky's request right now. Send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

The Best of Shark Tank includes more than 70 tales of IT woe submitted by you, our readers, since 1999. Which all goes to prove, conclusively, that hapless users and idiotic bosses are indeed worldwide phenomena. Free registration is all that's needed to download The Best of Shark Tank (PDF).

Join the discussion
Be the first to comment on this article. Our Commenting Policies