Why I like definite answers to support issues

March 14, 2008

One of the things that irritates me about commercial support is the difficulty of getting a definite answer from them if they do not have a canned solution to my issue. If they cannot give me great news, getting any news from them is often like pulling teeth (or slower), and even when they're willing to talk to me they tend to mumble a lot.

I want answers for a simple reason: it lets me resolve the situation one way or another. In this, I would rather have a definite no than a dragged on maybe; in the former case, at least I can make sure decisions and sensible plans. Without a definite answer, it is very hard to give up and let things drop; after all, the answer might be 'yes' tomorrow, if only I'd waited.

The result is that vendor mumbling turns into local paralysis, unless we are forced by outside events to establish a deadline (eg, 'must have something operational on date X'). We don't like the paralysis, but it is very hard to fight without that outside deadline, partly because we know that any deadline we pick for making a definite decision is pretty much arbitrary.

(No doubt this serves the vendor's purposes; after all, in a year the horse might sing.)

Written on 14 March 2008.
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Last modified: Fri Mar 14 23:33:36 2008
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