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An incident manager, sometimes known as a problem manager, is responsible for ensuring that an effective information technology (IT) system is maintained within an organization. This involves setting up support systems so that consumers and employees of the organization are able to utilize systems with minimal problems. The incident manager of an organization has to be proactive as well as reactive, depending on the situation that he or she has to deal with. Management duties are also a part of the job description, as the incident manager delegates duties to other IT employees relating to preventing or eliminating problems. Advanced knowledge of computer systems, attention to detail, and critical thinking are important aspects of doing the job successfully.
Support systems are used to help deal with problems as they develop within an IT department. This includes organizing help desk services that include phone or web assistance, and it is the incident manager's job to schedule and train IT employees for these positions. Once an incident has been reported, the incident manager keeps records of the problem and tries to determine ways to eliminate similar problems from happening in the future. Customer support is provided for certain products and services, and this is also organized by the manager.
It is the incident manager's job to make sure that IT systems are properly updated and maintained on a regular basis. This requires an understanding of complex computer processes such as servers, routers, and software. The incident manager often delegates these tasks to other employees, but is responsible for making sure that they are completed according to schedule. If the manager sees a problem developing it, it is his or her duty to consult with upper-level management or contract outside help to ensure that the IT systems continue to run properly as much of the time as possible.
The incident manager of an organization has to pay a lot of attention to small details to keep a large system, with many different components, running all of the time. This requires a high level of organization as well as excellent verbal and written communication skills. Training in computer science is crucial to being effective at the job, because it is so deeply rooted in many different areas of the technological process. Critical thinking is required to be able to look at the whole picture, which is necessary in order to break down the system into workable pieces.
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