Reflection Blog 12 – Matt Alexander

4 – 8 September. This week we had dealt with a few issues due to weather. One of our offices had closed the week before due to a hurricane coming up the Gulf Coast, but this week we had prepared an office to be shut down due to the Hurricane Irma. During this time we also had an issue with the battery bank for the UPS at this location. What we had to do was coordinate with the office for when they were shutting down operations. After that time we had a task list of sequences of when each server should be put into maintenance mode, then shut down. The physical servers and routers were properly shut down by the Pittsburgh Office, which is a completely remote location. Then the local office unplugged the UPS and left the office to evacuate the area.

During this time the office can continue to work by remoting in from another state and work. Our job is to monitor their access and ensure they have complete services during this time of emergency. We work consistently with the Help Desk. Their job is to help the individual, but our job is to help large scale issues that happen across the network.

I also followed up on some open alerts that had happened, but wanted to ensure they were remaining stable. This is critical because many issues will fall to the side if a department doesn’t follow up on them. This helps head off future issues and that’s why the NOC is vital to ReedSmith. It is a safety net for heading off problems before they become bigger problems. Over this past week I had personally dealt with seven different departments and some of the issues that had come up. One issue that I can talk about is a mobile device issue. An update to our mobile devices which integrates two older systems into a single system all through 3rd party applications became a major issue within ReedSmith at this time. The lawyers throughout the company use their mobile devices for texting, emails, and updates as far as law cases. Getting information to these lawyers as fast as possible is vital to ReedSmith success. The work-around for this issue was rolling back part of the program, along with giving information to the local support world-wide. It was an issue that couldn’t have been foreseen and became a top priority over the last part of this week. My part in this was keeping each local IT department updated with fixes along with coordinating with the Mobility Team on any fast fixes that could help the worldwide teams. This was a high profile case and many of the bosses were involved. Following up the next week will be a priority but there are many moving parts around ReedSmith.

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