SDL Support Agreement problems
Thread poster: Ines Burrell

Ines Burrell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:36
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Apr 5, 2011

I was wondering if anybody who uses SDL support could help me to figure out how to get help I have paid for.

I have had my SDL Support Agreement now for a year and unfortunately was silly enough to renew it recently. I have Level 2 agreement which in theory means that I should get a reply to urgent issues within 3 hours, at least that was what I was told personally on the phone when I purchased my first agreement a year ago.

Last week I reported a problem at 2pm and it was extremely urgent, yet the first I heard from them was at 10.30 the next morning! By that time I had retranslated the file I had problems with since I could not really wait any longer, the file had to be delivered and I had to work all the night. The week before I had reported a non-urgent issue thinking that I can wait a couple of days but it took them more than a week to respond! Yesterday I reported a very urgent problem at 10am. Now it is 10.30am. I still have not heard anything from them. With this level of speed there is not much point to their services, to be honest and I will certainly not be renewing my agreement next year.

Does anybody know if there is any way of speeding up the process? All I can think of filing another support request to enquire when they will deem it prudent to deal with my urgent issue but chances are it will take me a few more days to get a reply to that!

Ines


 

Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:36
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
SLA loopholes - try telephone support Apr 5, 2011

There are several things that lead to the impression you have:

1. Reply within 3 hours: These 3 hrs (and all other intervals as well) are counted within SDL's business hours, which may or may not coincide well with yours.
2. "Reply" does not mean that your case will be solved within this time frame. The 3 hrs rule is basically observed the moment a staff member has had the first look at your request.
3. The urgency of support cases is judged by quite specific criteria. What you perceive as a very urgent case might allow for much more time following these criteria. Ultimately, it's the SDL staff who make this judgement. The criteria are somewhere in the SLA (which is quite hard to find - I've had no luck while searching for some text to quote here, but I remember I've read them before).

I suggest you try telephone support first. I've found staff to be very friendly, helpful and supportive, and it's much quicker than logging a support case within SDL's extremely clumsy and slow web support interface.


 

Ines Burrell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:36
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! Apr 5, 2011

It did not really cross my mind. To be honest I hate using phone (making calls, not answering them) but in this case it will probably be the only option.

Thanks again!

Ines


 

Stanislav Pokorny  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 23:36
English to Czech
+ ...
Escalation Apr 5, 2011

Hi Ines,
I think that there's an "Escalation" button somewhere in the web interface, but I never needed it. SDL's support has always been very quick and efficient in my case.


 

Ines Burrell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:36
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Yup, you are right Stanislav Apr 5, 2011

Just noticed the option. Thanks a lot! This is just what I need.

Ines


 

SDL Community  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:36
English
On your Support case Apr 5, 2011

Hi Ines,

I thought I'd take a quick look at your cases to see what has happened here and I can't find any critical cases raised last week, or any open cases from last week. The most recent, raised yesterday is still open and indeed you have raised this as Critical, but based on the description you gave I think it is very likely that this will have been recategorised to a lower priority because it does not seem like something requiring a 3-hr response.

There are definitions in your support contract about what each classification means and whilst we do try to stick to the classification stated by the user reporting the problem, we have to make sure (as much as we can) that we are not putting at risk those customers who have a problem that prevents them from working at all in line with the definition of a Critical problem. All the definitions are available in the customer centre but in case people are wondering, this is what we call a Critical Priority Error:

A "Critical Priority Error" means a problem which simultaneously affects all or more than one of your users and for which no practicable workaround is available and that prevents or materially impairs the performance of substantially all major functions of the Software as described in the Documentation so that: (i) the Software is unavailable to the you or at material risk of becoming unavailable; or (ii) you are unable to use the Software due to continual failures or data corruption. Once a Critical Priority Error is resolved (whether by procedural workaround, system restart, hot-fix, or otherwise) such error's priority level shall be changed to Medium Priority Error.


So, if you really have a Critical problem then it is important that you ensure the description of the problem makes this clear so that we do not recategorise it and lower the priority.

If you disagree with us doing this, or if we are late in responding, then as you have found we do have an escalation process that is clearly labelled in your customer centre and using this ensures that all Support Managers and the Global Support Director are made aware of your disagreement via email and it will ensure a rapid escalation to make sure we have not incorrectly diagnosed the importance of your case, or just failed to respond in good time.

I hope this clarifies the process a little, but I do welcome your feedback on this process because we are happy to review and revise anything we are doing if we can realistically improve our processes. We do have a lot of supported customers, so we see a lot of cases and managing them in an efficient manner is something that is very high on our priorities.

Regards

Paul


 

Ines Burrell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:36
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Paul! Apr 6, 2011

It just means I have to think very carefully how I word my support request. Thanks for explaining!

 


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