Net Access Blog

Support is More Than Just People Answering Phones…

Posted by Tom Duff on Jul 7, 2015 8:06:48 AM

It’s 2am. Your phone rings, jarring you out of that awesome Bob Dylan dream you keep having. In your half-asleep state, you manage to grunt out “I.T., Mr. Tambourine man speak…er…what’s up?”

The person on the other end of the line is not amused. It’s your boss. The storefront web server is down…again. To make things worse, it’s Black Friday, and your company is running a special online doorbuster promo for the new Whosywhatzit that all the kids want for Christmas. Your boss said that if the site isn’t back up in 15 minutes, you can start looking for a new job.

You hang up the phone, and jump on your computer. What you find is even worse: You’ve lost all connectivity to the rack at the data center. You can’t see the mail server, the firewall, or your storage server. You’re completely dead in the water. Fearing the worst, you pick up your phone and dial the data center’s Operations Center for some answers.

Remote Hands-" The technician who answers helps to calm your nerves by assuring you that the building hasn’t blown up, and starts working with you to try and figure out what’s going on. They go out to your rack, and report that everything looks visibly normal. Every device appears to have power, and network ports have link and are showing activity. Within minutes, they’ve narrowed down the issue to your rack’s core router, consoled it, found that one of your BGP sessions to another provider was down, and your route-map was incorrectly configured so traffic never failed over. 3 minutes later, the router, and the rest of your rack, are back online.

Triumphantly you call your boss, who instead of firing you, gives you a raise, and then pulls out a harmonica and invites you up on stage with him to perform ‘Blowin’ In the Wind’ in front of a sold-out crowd. About that time, you hear a faint ringing that jars you out of your sleep…

All joking aside, colocation and cloud solutions are a great way to add stability, redundancy, and peace-of-mind to your company's daily operations. The problem is, people sometimes forget about the most important aspect of their contracts: remote hands. When choosing a provider, you need to think about those 2am meltdowns, and how your provider will be able to handle them. If you choose a provider whose technicians are nothing more than “the reboot squad”, you’re gonna have a bad time.

On the other hand, putting your confidence in trained, knowledgeable support staff, who understand not only what your gear is, but how it’s supposed to work, will save you from those terrible times when you need to cut your Disney vacation short to fly back and swap out a RAID card.

RemoteHands2Since our company’s inception, Net Access support technicians have been known for rolling up their sleeves and diving in headfirst for you - all the way from setup, right on through to production - Whether it was finding the right modem string to get your dialup working at 56k back in the 1990’s, or installing VMware ESXi 6.0 after racking and stacking your new gear. 

Our operations staff hold industry-leading certifications from companies like Cisco, Juniper, Brocade, VMware, and Microsoft, and we’re constantly striving to learn more every day. In addition, 75% of our NOC staff have over 5 years of service with the company, with the average actually being closer to 8 years. We’re passionate about our job, and that’s what drives us to be the best support staff your money can buy.


Tom Duff Tom Duff has been with Net Access for 8+ years and currently serves as Team Leader in our Network Operations Center.

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Topics: customer service, support, Remote Hands