The purpose of the Task Order was to support the Primary Production Center of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Finance Center (NFC), an environment that included up to 1,000 employees and the more than 1,400 devices with which they perform the mission-critical tasks assigned to the agency. In that capacity, the Network and Desktop Support Team has been charged with the execution of Help Desk responsibilities, the installation and replacement of all hardware and software tools for the environment, the long term maintenance of all desktop systems, and, among other assignments, support of the agency’s disaster response/business continuity planning and execution.
The Desktop and Network Support Team provided seamless support for four remote USDA NFC sites prior to, during, and immediately following the department’s deployment during the threat from Hurricane Gustav. Regardless of the challenges posed by the widespread locations of the sites – Colorado, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Missouri – the team received recognition for its timely and effective response to a difficult situation.
During 2008, the team had the additional responsibility for the installation and configuration of Microsoft Office 2007 on all of the desktop computers as the NFC converted from a Novell-based network to a total Windows environment, including the first time implementation of SharePoint Services. Trouble ticket volume increased dramatically as the Desktop and Network Support Team was engaged to assist in the fixing of individual files as well as one-on-one training on the new software tools as a component to the response to related trouble tickets.