Support Over Board


Gone are the days of citing a slight unhappiness with a service and not being inundated with ‘helpful’ people.

I recently cited a reason I wasn’t happy with a Rackspace server I deal with for a client. My issues are:

  1. No SSH access
  2. Always runs slow

Now it’s on my client to purchase servers with SSH access. The real issue here is that when I talk to Rackspace support I’m told that SSH access is not secure that you should always use FTP access, see it’s more secure.

The speed issue has been a nagging issue. For 2 years we spent time working on site speed. We configured caching, sprites, minified JS…and the site always runs slow. It runs faster on my development server with no caching (and my dev server does 20K pageviews a month from the live sites I have on it as well).

So that’s it, I’m not slagging the Rackspace support overall. Outside of the incorrect information out FTP being more secure than SSH, they have been very polite.

Too Helpful

So after citing my issues I received no fewer than 6 tweets about the issues. Then track forward an hour and I get a phone call from Rackspace support. Again, they’re trying to be helpful so that’s awesome. But I’m trying to do paid work for other clients and all they’re doing is interrupting me from doing it. Plus I’m getting charged for an international long distance inbound call.

I must admit by the time I got the call I was just frustrated. I had turned off Twitter to stop the badgering to DM their support people, I had work to get done.

I’m not sure what I expected really. I haven’t been super happy with the performance of Rackspace servers, but if you dig around on any host you’re going to find issues. You’re also going to find people who love it. I had recommendations for Rackspace from people I trust so I have no doubt that it’s a decent service.

The real issue is that I killed billable time because of Rackspace. My client with the Rackspace server wasn’t paying me to resolve an issue and I run a business so I need to be paid.

Broken

Really if you only go all out on an issue when it’s on social media, your process is already broken. I’ve spent hours on the phone with Rackspace in the last 2 years about site speed and no one was able to help me. Suddenly helping me now means you missed the opportunity to help me before.

I’ve had the same experience with Adobe and CIBC. You all have a broken process of support on the front lines. Don’t fix it in social media, fix it on the phone the first time.


One response to “Support Over Board”

  1. Aras says:

    Agree with you completely that it is a sign of brocken process when they try to fix issues only when it has gone into the wild. But good on them for at least noticing that. Maybe they will even improve their process because of this feedback.

    I have not used rackspace but I am using wpengin for our website jimulabs.com and so far I am very happy. They offer SSH access. Also their support has been exceptional. I had an issue with file permissions yesterday, 3 minute after emailing them they fixed it and got back to me. It is a bit more pricy, but for those critical projects I think it is worth it.