Robert ScottBy Brian Grabowski • March 21, 2013
Robert Scott is a Technical Support Analyst for the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility.
What role do you play at Argonne, and what kind of work do you do?
I work with the User Services Team, which is the first line of support for researchers using the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF). Our team supports all the users for the research being done through the Innovative & Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE), Advanced Leadership Computing Challenge (ALCC) and Early Science Programs that are using our supercomputing facilities.
If our users are having any problems or technical issues getting on our systems, those are things we typically assist with. I always feel good about the user-experience assistance that our team is able to provide. We always want to provide our users with a top-notch experience, so that way they’ll want to come back. I also enjoy working with such a diverse group of users, because on a day-to-day basis, it’s always something new that we’re learning. It’s not just technical; it’s something about that user, the science they’re bringing to us, that I probably didn’t know about the day before.
How long have you been at Argonne, and what attracted you to work here?
I just received my five-year anniversary letter, and I’ve enjoyed my time at Argonne very much. Before coming here, I was working at another company and a few of my colleagues there had joint appointments at Argonne. Talking with them, I got the feeling that Argonne was a great place to work and was very diverse, with a lot of opportunities to learn new things, and I’ve definitely seen that be the case. I have to say there has not been a day since I’ve been here that I haven’t learned something. Everyone has a strong wealth of knowledge, and it’s not only in one particular realm of technology or just a business aspect — it’s really a situation where there’s always something that people are bringing to the table.
What are the things you enjoy most about working at Argonne?
There are a lot of things — the overall atmosphere, for one. People are also outgoing and willing to help you, and it is a culture where everyone is working for a common goal. If you run into a situation where you can't resolve something on your own, you can go to anyone for assistance and guidance. People are always willing to go above and beyond to help the mission and ensure goals are met. It’s a very collaborative, team-oriented working environment.
What is your background?
I have my degree in computer science, but I did not truly go down that career path. I’ve pursued more of a customer service role. I think that being able to provide excellent customer service and support is what brought me to where I am today.
What is the most exciting thing about your job?
Looking back 10 years ago, I never thought I’d have the incredible opportunity I have in front of me here at Argonne right now. I’m working at one of the top supercomputing facilities in the nation at the ALCF, and I’m able to collaborate with some the of the world’s top scientists and researchers, which is very exciting.