Team keeps base's communications needs on track
By William A. O'Brien, 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
/ Published October 14, 2011
INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey --
From acquisition to disposal, the 39th Communications Squadron Client Services Section is responsible for maintaining all the base's computers and components.
Within the CSS, there are three functions: client services technicians, automated data processing equipment and communications focal point.
"We're all one shop with three different functions," said Tech. Sgt. Chris Skaggs, 39th CS client services technician. "Instead of having us in one room and having everyone doing the same thing at the same time, it's more practical to break us out into three separate shops."
The technicians are responsible for maintaining the physical computer components and its software, as well as ensuring all patches are properly installed.
A security patch is a change applied to protect against vulnerability. Patches prevent exploitation and eliminate or mitigate a threat's capability to exploit a computer system.
"Everyone at Incirlik, Ankara and Istanbul we support with basic tech support," said Staff Sgt. Jasmine Rhodes, 39th CS CSS client services technician. "Anything from account issues to computer problems, log-in issues, issues with security patches -- basically any computer issue that comes up in any of those locations, we're responsible for taking care of it and getting it working again."
This process starts by someone at Incirlik, Ankara or Istanbul putting in a trouble ticket. The ticket is then classified as high, medium or routine priority. That priority dictates how long it will take for the fix to occur. In the case of a high priority, the matter will be resolved within 24 hours. A medium priority takes about two days and a routine priority is usually resolved three to five days after the ticket is received.
In September, CSS processed more than 100 trouble tickets.
"If it's a high priority, it's mission critical, in those cases, it gets fixed right away," said Rhodes. "We stop what we're doing to ensure it's fixed. If we don't have a fix action for it in a couple of hours Enterprise Service Desk will call us and ask us (what the status is).
"Medium is treated like, 'ok, we need to knock this out right away,' but they are prioritized," added Rhodes. "Sometimes a routine priority can be upgraded to medium, but may still not be as high as other medium priority tickets."
For customers who are wondering about the status of tickets they've submitted, the communications focal point office maintains records of all trouble tickets for all communications issues across the base. This includes issues not addressed by client services technicians, such as local area network and phone issues.
"If you had a question about any job ticket, you would call comm focal point first, and they would look up the job and see what was done," said Skaggs.
Since January, the CFP has managed about 5,000 trouble tickets. Tickets range from phone or computer issues to equipment setup for commander's calls.
"We work directly with customers to ensure their computer issues are resolved in a timely manner and help them with anything they need comm wise. Usually our technicians are able to get out on site and fix the issue before that, but if anyone wants to check the status or if they have any questions, they can call at the CFP and we'll check in on the ticket and put you through to the technician working it."
In the case of acquiring new or disposing of old equipment, the unit in need of the upgrade contacts the Automated Data Processing Equipment section.
"If there are any new requirements or tech. refreshes, we work hand and hand with the CSTs to make sure patches are pushed and the computers are updated and ready to go out," said Airman 1st Class Michael Hareld, 39th CS ADPE technician. "They are more hands on whereas we image the computer and get it ready to go to where the CSTs can go on there and install any needed information or specialized software."
In the ADPE office they also maintain inventories of all data processing equipment.
"We track and inventory anything that processes data that you use; it could be anything -- computers scanners, and printers, anything that you work with," said Skaggs.
Working together as one section, these three very different jobs service the computers fueling missions across Incirlik.