Chris J Powell

The Rant on Tech Support

I have been involved with Technology for almost 2 decades in one form or another.  I have been the go to guy for computers at nearly every job I have had in my adult life, was a Call Router with HP, a Microsoft Outlook Developer, A Tech Support Specialist and even had my own Technology Support Company for a while…all through this I have been the person that friends and family called upon to fix their computer issues both in person and remotely and I have seen and done almost anything with a computer that you can think of.

In the time that I have been doing all this, I have seen dumb customers and I have worked with really bad Support Agents but last night while helping my brother configure his $40 Canon Printer to connect to his Wireless Modem Router from Execulink Telecom I was shocked by how little help the front line agent was…and the suggestion that the issue was our fault really got me thinking back to my days in the world of Tech Support.

I get that the printer is not a connecting device to the internet so it may not be supported by the agent and that is fine…but the key feature that is on the modem/router is a WPS button which in effect is a single press connectivity tool for devices like Printers…but in the infinite wisdom of the company…that feature was disabled and there was no access to the internal workings of the modem to enable it.

You say “What”…yes that is right, Execulink Telecom is using a Walled Garden method that lets them have complete control over the device while still charging a retarded $5.00 per month for the rental of the device.  There is only a web interface for the modem that can be accessed only from their home page and only the most basic features (Wifi Name/Password and Port Forwarding are enabled).  I was absolutely floored by this.

Why provide a device that has features on it (ie the WPS Button) but then disable that in the firmware?  And how can you justify the rental of a device but not give access to enabling/disabling the key features within it?

After the 72 minute ordeal of being on hold to get through to a live person (longer to use the Live Chat Feature) the support agent was not living up to the premise of First Call Resolution but was only looking at the dreaded AHT (Average Handle Time) Statistic that I am sure his anal retentive manager had just been harping on him about during his pre-shift.  The call went from bad to worse almost immediately when the agent answered the phone…we simply wanted access to the modem to enable the WPS feature…nothing more.

The Agent new nothing about what this action would do and his solution:

  1. If you don’t like our modem, get your own!
  2. Don’t use the modem wirelessly

Really…that is your solution…listen buddy.  I know that you have/had the ability to remote into the modem…you could have very easily done that, turned on the feature that should not have been disabled in the first place, left a customer very happy and achieved all the other key stats for a telephone support agent…but no you chose none of that.

I am recommending my brother make the leap over to a real ISP (I use Start Communications) and absolutely love everything about them (it doesn’t hurt that I used to work with most of their support people)…for the same money he would have full access, no restrictions and real support (even if it may not be 24/7)!

For now though…my Rant is done…but NEVER will I ever go back to Execulink for ANYTHING!!!

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