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Matthew’s Blog – Problem Solving

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The Windows course was now over and I was back at work glad to be getting back to the usual routine of things. However I don’t know if I can describe my job at The Apprentice Store routine as there’s a lot of variation in my work, another thing I’m glad about.

The first problem I was presented with this week was in Excel. Our client was trying to link to files in SharePoint but these would open in the web browser rather than in Windows Explorer like they intended. Initially I had no idea how to solve this but was keen to get this solved for them. This one of the cool things about working in this way, the client comes to me with a problem, I either know how to fix it from past experience or have to research it. Either way I always have to be one step ahead, not only does this improve your breadth of knowledge due to the wide variety of problems that come in it also acts as a motivator. It’s not unusual for these problems to be interfering with their work and although this does come with some pressure it ensures that you make good use of your time when troubleshooting these issues. With that comes further improvement as you can more easily spot when you’re becoming distracted or are going down the wrong tracks. Back on topic though, for those curious the problem was fixed by using Excel’s hyperlink function.

I was also tasked with taking a brand new laptop and setting this up to meet our client’s needs. It seems easy enough and I’ll admit that I didn’t think this would take as long as it did. You don’t realise just how much you have personalised your computer until you have to setup a new one. This is becoming less and less of a problem with the cloud but even then programs do need to be downloaded and installed for that to work. Documentation is a big part of the process too, David suggested that I do a checklist. Not only did this give me the peace of mind that I had setup everything up correctly it also let the client know exactly what had happened to their computer and what things may still need to be done.
There was other little tasks and problems that came up this week but I found the above to be the most fun. I like helping people, whether it’s solving an irritating problem in Excel or making the transition to a new piece of hardware a little easier, it helps me by improving my knowledge, it helps them by solving the problem and it even helps our future clients as if I ever have to do these tasks again I’ll can carry them out more efficiently therefore saving them time.

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