As I’ve mentioned in previous entries, outsourced providers are constantly juggling a whole litany of client issues; when you call for the helpdesk, you might not be able to speak with an engineer right away. (It really, truly, honestly isn’t anything personal.)
While it is 100% your provider’s responsibility to resolve your issues, there are a few things that you can do on your end to help expedite the process.
1) Tell us what’s wrong in as much detail as you’re able.
If you get an error message, record what it says. Tell us what you were trying to accomplish when you encountered the issue (no judgment). Tell us if it’s happened before, and how many people are affected.
The more information your provider has, the less time they’ll need to spend trying to decipher and diagnose your issue. There’s also a fairly large chance that they’ve seen, documented, and solved the very same symptoms before, and can simply replicate the steps to remediation.
2) Provide access to the parts of your network that are causing your trouble.
If your provider needs to reboot your server, but does not have access to your server, they’re going to spend a large chuck of their time and yours finding a work-around for an otherwise quick fix.
3) Provide access to the person having the issue.
This last point is twofold—this person not only has the most information about the issue, but they’re also the only one who can tell us when it’s resolved.
In any service industry, perception is everything; if the user doesn’t feel as though the issue has been solved, the issue has not been solved. We can’t properly complete the final testing phase without having contact with this person.
Let me stress the fact that these are not requirements or even expectations—as I said, it is our job to keep your network and your users up and running.
But, if you’re in a time crunch and need speedy resolution, following these guidelines will help get you on the right track that much faster.