Inside BITS: Q&A with an Associate System Administrator

Published May 23, 2022 | Categories: IT Services , System Administration , BITS Team

DShives.jpgHave you ever wondered what it’s like to be a BITS team member at Beacon? If you’re a client of ours, you’ve likely spoken to us over the phone and may already be familiar with some of our technicians and what they do.

For this month’s blog, we interviewed Dustin Shives, our Associate System Administrator to get the scoop on what his day-to-day is like as a member of our team. Read ahead to discover the IT issues Dustin gets calls about the most often, some of his personal tips & tricks, and more!:


Q: Could you tell us a little bit about what you do at BITS?

A: I work on the hosting and systems side of BITS as an Associate System Administrator. I generally work with the servers, any network issues, and hosting issues; but all of us act as a team and help where needed.


Q: What does a normal day look like for you? Could you briefly walk us through a typical support call/visit?

A: One of the biggest things I love about working on the BITS team at Beacon is that I don’t think I could ever define my day as normal. No two days, or calls for that matter, are ever the same!

Even though the calls are always unique, I do approach every call in a similar manner and go through the same initial steps. I first greet the caller, and we’ll get right into it with their issue. As they describe the problem, I listen and identify three things: what issue they are having, if the issue is affecting any other people, and what they may have already tried to do to resolve the issue. Listening to an “end-user” often provides more information than you would expect, so it’s important to get all of the information you can.

After troubleshooting and resolving their problem, I thank the caller for contacting BITS and make notes on the call. That’s what my usual process is typically like.


Q: Is there a particular technical issue for clients that occurs more frequently these days?

A: I often see VPN and Remote Access being some of the most reoccurring issues due to the availability of working from home. Fortunately, VPN and Remote Access issues are normally easy to resolve on our end, so we try to make it as painless as possible for the end-users. These kinds of issues have become more frequent in the past few years as businesses have set up work-from-home or hybrid systems, so we’ve gotten very adept at solving these problems, quickly.


Q: What’s your favorite part about working on the BITS Team?

A: The teamwork and the daily variety of work. Since every call and every day is different, our work is always engaging and interesting. And our team is the best of the best; we have a lot of fun together and everyone is very supportive of each other inside and outside the office.


Q: Do you have any IT tips or helpful shortcuts you use often that you’d be willing to share?

A: The best “trick” I’ve learned that’s been most helpful throughout my career is to know where to find the answers and take notes. When I find a great resource or discover the solution to some specific troubleshooting, I always save those notes in a prominent place or bookmark pages in my browser. If you find something helpful, keep those places tabbed and make notes of anything you come across.


Q: Do you have any advice for those looking to enter the world of IT? Like someone who is interested in joining Beacon's BITS team?

A: My advice for anyone entering the world of IT would be:

  1. Keep an open mind.
  2. Ask questions.
  3. Do the research and find the answer (Google is your friend)!


Sounds like a great mantra for anyone, even outside of the world of IT! We are grateful to Dustin for taking the time to share his BITS experience and also for his hard work helping our clients every day. Thanks again, Dustin!

Are you looking for a career in IT support or system administration? Beacon is currently hiring for several roles, check out our current openings on our job board here.