Most typical startup ministries and churches don’t have a dedicated IT professional as part of the core makeup of the plant. Generally speaking, this hire comes much later in the growth of the ministry.
And, the senior leader is typically not the IT guy. So how do you hire right?
The range of skills is great but there are a few things that every IT man (or woman) should generally know. Here’s a list of 10 things that your official IT hire should know:
1. Manage and Fix Basic PC Issues
Does this person know how to manage a printer? Backing up files, adding hardware, and setting up computers for use? This person doesn’t have to be a whiz-hack with a knife and a motherboard but he should know how to do basic PC setups.
This person needs to know how to manage, setup, and maintain a basic network. Troubleshooting should come standard. This person knows what DNS stands for, how to check it, ping, trace-routes, and more.
3. System Admin
Managing how computers talk to each other is pretty much basic 101 IT stuff. File permissions, access levels, and domain controllers should be common language with this person, even if you don’t know what that means.
4. Basic Scripting
This person doesn’t need to be a coder but he/she does need to know how to throw a script together.
5. Help Desk Skills
Does this person know how to handle a help desk environment? Good with phone and email support? Yup, they should.
This person needs to know how to not only fix issues but train others to fix issues. Your IT needs are only going to grow and become larger. Having a person who can train others is critical.
7. Network Tracing
Snooping, netmon, wireshark, network capturing tools; you don’t need to know what they are but your IT guy should. This will help fix significant issues when you need a real engineer to help.
8. Be a Good Listener
I’m training my daughter right now to be a good listener, and it’s tough! Being a good listener is everything in the IT/Web world because we need to admit that we don’t know everything (and sometimes the issue is less mechanical and more personal and relational).
9. Basic Software and Installation
This is a no-brainer.
10. A Good Backbone and Decision Maker
A good IT person will speak up and make critical decisions based on limited information. You don’t need a yuppy; you need a leader, and someone with a backbone.