Ummagumma asks: "I'm trying to find out how those of you who work in the IT service industry, tell customers 'no', when the requests are unreasonable for whatever reason. There is a culture here of 'piling-on' work with regards to IT - and, unfortunately, I've never learned the proper way to tell people 'no'. It may sound simple, but in this economy, where jobs are tough to come by, I don't want to be seen as the impediment to getting things done Any suggestions on telling people that their work request can wait? Especially in a way that won't jeopardize my future here? I've searched the web, but most of the sites that supposedly have information of this type just want you to sign up for their seminars. I'm looking for actual, real-world experiences, and how the people of Slashdot deal with this issue on a day-to-day basis."
"Here is my dilemma: I'm a relatively new employee (~2 months) at a software engineering shop. I am the sole IT person for a 100+ person company, with 50+ remote VPN users, 40+ developers, 30+ servers, firewalls, etc. I do it all, from desktop and application support, to security, to servers. In the past, the IT department has been seriously under-funded, and there is an absolute ton of catch-up work that needs to get done. At this point, I could work 70+ hour work weeks for a year, and still not be caught up, between project work, upgrade, documentation and day-to-day stuff.
I've inquired about more IT budgeting (staff, equipment, etc.), and that just is not going to happen for quite a while."