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Beware the Handyman Syndrome

SAN blog TimWhat do a dishwasher and Office 365 have in common? Both must be installed correctly to avoid a flood of problems.

In the case of the dishwasher, an incorrect hose hookup produced a kitchen floor flood. In the Office 365 case, ports opened to facilitate its installation were never closed, enabling a flood of nasty malware, including ransomware.

The culprit in both cases? The Do-It-Yourself culture that convinces us anyone can tackle any job.

It’s easy to see the appeal of the handyman approach, especially when the focus is on possible savings. Unfortunately, when things go wrong, the Y in DIY becomes a painful reminder of what you don’t know.

For our homeowner with the failed dishwasher installation, the cost was minor: some cleanup, a loss of handyman pride, and a bill for the proper installation from the local appliance professional.

The Office 365 case — and its resulting cost — was far more serious.

So a word of caution when deciding between when to DIY and when to call in help: before you tackle any project, ask yourself if you already have the skillset needed to do the project — because learning as you go is not an option when dealing with your organization’s IT infrastructure.

And if you’re still swayed by the possibility of DIY savings, take a glance at what other items on your to-do list will end up delayed or abandoned because you’re busy DIYing.

DIY can seem attractive, but it has hidden costs you need to consider.

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