By Denton Josey, Features Editor
Last year, Team 55 handled 35,000 phone calls from students and faculty requesting computer and technology assistance. Include the walk-in clients and that number is closer to 40,000.
Kay Reeves, director of technology support services and customer services, said “a good number of those we resolved on that first phone call.” Despite such a high volume of calls and people seeking help every year, Team 55 is working hard to add even more technology to students and faculty. Behind Team 55 is about 50 student workers and 10 software and hardware technicians, said Josh Tooley, manager of Team 55, Copy Cat and Help Desk. Reeves said over the summer, Team 55 and the Help Desk, historically separate entities, merged together. This means students and faculty will now go to the same place for information and assistance with campus technology.
“There’s a lot of things, from a customer-service perspective, that we go way beyond other universities,” Tooley said. Last year, Team 55 introduced a live chat system for users to contact Team 55 and get live help via the Internet. This year they’ve implemented a system that allows a Team 55 technician to actually see what is on someone’s computer screen, with their consent, and the ability to then remotely control the computer if necessary.
“It gives us a whole level of support above what we could do before,” Tooley said. “It allows us to control their machines and observe them.”
Also, Tooley said there is a variety of self-help available on-line, and some computer issues can be resolved without even needing to contact Team 55. Currently, they are working on a video that serves as an introduction to campus technology for new students and users. While Team 55 answers the phone calls for computer related issues, it is not in charge of all technology on campus as some callers sometimes believe.
“We’re basically the technology liaisons between the students, faculty and staff, and the full-time staff that works on campus,” Tooley said. “We’re the gateway.”
In addition to looking for new ways to resolve computer problems, the technology support at ACU also stays alert for new technology and innovation that could be used on campus.
“Our development people spend their lives looking around for ways to improve,” Reeves said. “They like nothing more than looking for the next thing.” She notes that ACU was one of the first universities to switch to Google mail, which features Google documents. Google documents allow multiple users to work on a singular document at the same time. Also, the new myACU was a project that was completed right before classes began this fall. It has more user-friendly features that allow individual users more control over what they see on their myACU page. Another change that took place over the summer was with Information Services, a department Team 55 is associated with. It changed the registration system for computers on campus and under the new system all the computers are on the same registration, whereas before there were two different registries for regular and wireless
“That’s one thing about ACU, we’re always trying to stay on the cutting edge instead of waiting to see what other schools do,” Tooley said.