Im wondering if someone can help me. I have been working with a new employer for 3 months now as the ICT Network Manager. I have thoroughly looked at my job description and as a summary my job is to manage the schools ICT network to ensure it is available to all, up to date, secure and to overseen future developments and implementations.
Recently I have been told that is my duty to run Cat 5e cables for any new installations around the place. I'm a little concerned about this as I have been also told that it my duty to carry out the DIY tasks associated with running the cables such as drilling holes putting up trunking etc.
The Site Manager has told me that it is my job to do the cabling and has briefly showed me how to use a drill and how to use ladders. I have also had some asbestos training but beyond that nothing is formal or in writing and I do not believe that I should be carrying out DIY related tasks or cabling in anyway as I am not qualified to do so and in my opinion not hired to do that.
Please could anyone give me some advise on this as I think Im being forced into something here.
Most of the time we will leave the drilling of holes/ect to the site team and do the rest (cable runs/trunking) - you may find that marking out precisely where the holes need to go and asking nicely will work out fine for you as well (but do be precise!).
Does the job description or contract say anything along the lines of "any other duties requested by the headmaster/senior leadership team" it's a catchall that's commonly used in schools.
If your getting paid a reasonable network manager wage you could argue that the cost of getting a cabling company in is money well spent, however if you generally not over stretched and the schools money is tight then you may be expected to go the extra mile.
In my time as network manager i have done many things not in the original job description or contract. I cleared out a downspout during a torrential rain storm, pumped out water from flood submerged boiler room, re cabled a lighting rig, built shelves , decorated our own office, fitted air-con, etc...
And of course if you're worried, speak to your line manager. Just say it's not something you expect from that job, it's not in your JD (assuming it isn't) and you're not entirely comfortable doing it. But do try and be flexible, we all know what budgets in schools are like and perhaps just making it known that you're happy to do what you can but as you know things are tight, <I'm not confident with DIY/I could use some training on it/could I have the help of site staff> etc. If you're willing to show flexibility then it may go down in your favour in performance management.
I do not believe that I should be carrying out DIY related tasks or cabling in anyway as I am not qualified to do so and in my opinion not hired to do that.
Cabling and general DIY has always struck me as fair enough - it's the schools that won't let you drill/dig holes in things that get on my nerves, you aren't allowed to just get on and fix things. Once you have free reign to use a drill around the place you can get away with all sorts of fun stuff. The school has a duty to make sure you are properly equipped, of course, so you could try asking for a nice new SDS drill and a circular bench saw...
I have the same job title - but I won't do cable runs etc other than single odd bits around the place. It's not in my JD or skillset (at least to do it well!) and I don't have the appropriate tools or training. We get electricians/cabling specialists in to do it most of the time, who do a neat job with trunking, have required training and are probably cheaper per hour than me. I won't open up three compartment trunking with mains/network in it, as I'd get a major telling off anyway as I'm not qualified to do more than wire a plug on 240v stuff.
I 'can' do it, but don't have the time or the right kit. It's alright having drills etc, but what about proper cable testing gear which can run into thousands. You also need to be clued up on H&S, electrical regs and current building regs. We use a proper cabling company who do a cracking job, certify the cable, provide test reports and guarantee the work for 25 years.
^ that is a damn good point. If something goes wrong, they've only got you to blame, and you've only got yourself to blame - or maybe even the school. If someone else does it, insurance and work guarantees have things covered. That's worth a lot.
we do all the work our self as you say the school bidget is tight. But if you do everything in house then the money can get pumped back into ICT for the pupils to benifit and learn new skills. We saved absolute thousands by doing this like the best part of 500 grand at least. We basically rewired the whole school. At the end of the day depends if you are happy in doing what you do and the school trust you and know that you are not qaulified.
but what about proper cable testing gear ........ certify the cable, provide test reports
Hmm, we never saw the reports for our new build, also I wonder how they tested a cable that was not actualy in it's room and was just connected to the module hanging in a void...
Our other building, The same company managed to wire 3 entire rooms and label them totaly incorrectly so nothing was right on the cabinet markings. Other points were simply faulty.
We had no say in who we used,
Two years previously we had some temporary buildings put up and an electrical company did the CAT5.. one computer room ( and this realy is no joke ) read round the room, A A1 A2 B C G K 3 5 2b K AA G 7 8 9 KK 4 10 B2 .. they we again contracted out of our control.
When we have control we get the guys I have been using for 12 years, they turn up they do a perfect job. Once we had been badly let down by another "forced" sub contractor, my response was to tell the contractor that if MY provider could get here and do the job then we should do that and stop XYZing around. the contractor was reticent but since My provider droped other jobs and turned up and had the work completed that day the main contractor gave up arguing.
if you do everything yourself to then you can fault find and it is must easier than going to diagrams and cabients you can just do it off the top of your head as well makes life so much easier. We have never had contractors in the 14 years that i have been here. We would even let the local authority ICT team come in cable because they are not very good double up on everything pull wires through places that are unreachable like plaster in the cables, etc