Wholesaler and Reseller Support - Managing End User Issues
FidoNet supply a number of products and services under a wholesaler / reseller agreement to IT companies who in turn resell these to their customers. In doing so a discount has been provided against the retail price, taking out the elements of end user support costs on the basis that you are in effect the frontline / customer support contact. As such you act as a funnel or filter only escalating fault reports to us when they have been proven and are within the scope of the service we have provided you. Unless we are also providing you with a white label support service, we would not expect (nor allow) your customers to contact us directly for assistance.
So what happens?
A customer contacts you with a problem report. Your role as frontline is to identify and confirm the problem and document it in sufficient detail that we can quickly replicate the fault. If this means asking your customer questions so that you can replicate the problem before raising then you need to do this
When reporting problems with incoming calls, it is important to get details of the phone number being dialled as well as dates/times of the calls so that we can trace the call in the logs (and so that you can replicate the problem on your side). This avoids false reports of problems with the system which may in fact be a problem with the customer demise (no internet, no signal, etc)
When reporting problems with web sites, it is important to get details of the website being visited as well as the IP address that the person is attempting to access from. Again if you can replicate the problem from your network then it is potentially easier to debug and trace. If you can’t replicate the problem then again the issue may relate to the customer’s local network (Sky blocking the website for example)
Routing problems fall under the same basic procedure as web sites … Obtaining a traceroute from an affected site would again be useful
Once you have been able to replicate the fault sufficiently that we can interact with you directly to resolve the fault raise a ticket and we will work with you within the realms of the SLA. Note that priorities should not be abused and a “critical” or “emergency” priority should not be used for basic issues affecting a handful of users .. The higher priority statuses should be reserved for serious outages affecting hundreds of customers. I’m sure you’re familiar with the story of the boy who cried wolf!
If you’re unable to resolve / replicate the issue then you need to pass us customer contact details and the customer needs to be available for us to contact to work through replicating the issue. There is little point in providing contact details for someone who has just jumped on a plane and won’t be available for 5-10 hours (for example) on a normal or high priority ticket as this will breach the SLA terms for a response.
We would hope that you the reseller will respond within the same time window you hold us to. If a response is not received within the timeframes for the SLA then we may downgrade your ticket or in extreme cases the ticket may be closed for inactivity after several hours.