FW: Tech contact for Qwest?

Derek J. Balling dredd at megacity.org
Fri Aug 20 20:11:34 UTC 1999

>That's a fairly strong statement to make. Large telcos/ISPs tend to through
>"newbie" engineers into situations where a experienced or senior engineer
>belongs. Let's face facts - there are not enough IP engineers/technicians to
>fill all the needed positions. Companies need to either have more peer
>review or expect the "clueless"  attitude toward customers. No one could
>expect a entry level engineer to handle complex ISP BGP issues when they
>barely understand VLSM/CIDR. The industry is much larger than previous
>years(obvious), thus more entry level engineers.

I think also that many of the large companies don't devote enough of their 
"newbies" time to actually learning. When I worked at GTE (way back when) 
as a grunt in a call center, the administators of the center (GTE/North 
TelOps Fort Wayne, for those who care) looked down on me because I was 
learning HOW the billing system interacted with the switches (to do 
disconnects and stuff), and wanted to understand those things. I was eager 
to learn and had no problem sticking around after hours reading manuals to 
learn stuff, but if I wanted to do that "on company time", I would get my 
ass kicked for it.

Not that any of the Call Center administrators had any problem with coming 
over to ask me questions about topics they wouldn't pay me to learn, mind 

Allowing the techs/engineers the time to learn is an investment that many 
large companies just don't see as beneficial. That's the problem. If a tech 
wants to take a month out to learn more about his job, all bean-counters 
and managers see is the money they lose from his work (and have to pay 
someone else to do while he's "off learning") and don't see that he can do 
MORE work at higher quality when he comes back.


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