When I was a Desktop Support Technician, I noticed a few things about how people use computers. In general, men loved to "tweak" their computers and customize every aspect of their computing environment. Unfortunately, 99 percent of these "tweakers" work themselves into trouble from their antics, costing productivity and money to repair their enhancements. Tweakers, it seems, also love to talk and tell you how much they know about computers while you're fixing what they broke a further waste of time.
Women, on the other hand, treated the computer like a tool. When something broke and a ticket came to me from a woman, I knew that the computer was broken. I also knew it probably wasn't going to be simple to fix.
Advise your employees, especially the men, that tweaking is not a requirement of their jobs and the expense to repair their improvements will be borne by them personally. When individuals know they'll have to pay for their dalliances, it's surprising how much more productive they become.
Viruses, spyware, pirated programs, software from home and random downloaded software from the Internet plague every company, large or small, that I have ever heard about. The best way to avert potentially expensive problems associated with unauthorized software is to have some rules governing software installation. And, this just isn't idle rhetoric, the fines for pirated software are steep. If you think that you can't afford to pay for software, you really can't afford to pay the fines for illegal software.
You also must establish some "rules of engagement" for contacting technical support. There should be a very limited number of people authorized to engage third-party technical support. Otherwise, you'll find that you have a very large support bill that you'd really like to dispute but can't.
There's no reason to pay someone $75 to $150 per hour to scan a desktop computer for viruses or to reboot a system do it yourself. Sure, there are times when you need a professional. Know your limitations, but don't throw away money. Save the hard stuff for the geeks and get on with your business. Running a company equipped with Windows computers doesn't have to be a black hole where you dump a significant amount of your profit every month. Roll up your sleeves, click a few buttons and maintain those systems yourself.
Article courtesy of ServerWatch.