So in one of my IS classes many years ago we were discussing the implementation of new systems. You may be asking, what do you mean new system? Well, a new system is typically some new way of doing something that we’ve done in the past, or are going to start doing. For example, when Facebook changes the way stuff works, that’s a new system. New systems are born out of necessity and innovation. Typically a need is noticed or a problem arises and a system is designed to help fulfill the need or solve the problem. New systems aren’t, despite what may be popular to believe, developed to make your life harder. They may cause some type of irritation to your current system of doing things, but they are designed to handle something. Not to focus you out of a crowd and make your life harder. 

You may wonder why I’m going off on this little bit of a rant. It’s because I’ve been working pretty hard to develop a new system for where I work. It’s a pretty simple concept. I manage webpages, some of these webpages contain information about people. This information is hardly ever passed on to me, so the pages never get updated. So I had a clever idea. What if I made a system where someone could manage their own information. That way when they get a new phone number, or move offices, or get that awesome raise they’ve been going after, they can update their info. Because they know that info. And I don’t. However, it seems that some people believe I am skirting my job by making them do all the work. That isn’t the case. And it irritates me, because I’m being poorly represented in this person’s opinion.

Now don’t get me wrong, I get the person’s argument. Faculty around here are asked to do a lot. I respect them for all they do, and I understand they work hard. But so do I. In fact, I worked very hard on this project to improve their quality of life by giving them a tool to use. And believe it or not, it creates more work for me, not less. Because now I have to maintain the database, support users who forgot their password, continually improve the software by writing new code to make it more efficient, and lots more. However, it’s my job to do these things, and I’ll do them because I enjoy doing it. But don’t think for one minute that I’m being lazy and passing the buck off to you.

What to get from this? I get that new systems can be a pain in the butt. They make  you leave your comfort zone and make you learn things that you feel shouldn’t have needed to be changed in the first place. But maybe there is something going on behind the scenes that is the motivator for this change. Perhaps you don’t understand the whole situation, just the tip of the iceberg that you can see. So when confronted with one of these changes, please be patient. Do your best to handle the situation as professionally as possible, because the people who are implementing the system are, sadly, expecting to get yelled at because things aren’t the same today as they were yesterday. I know I’d appreciate it, and I’m sure they would too.