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SAP support for us Business ByDesign users & partners, as well as support for the SAP Portals (how many are there…!!!) seems to be suffering, perhaps SAP has fallen victim to its own Cloud success?

I can think back to when I was an SAP employee, when I needed a solution to issues/problems in ByDesign, I just needed to create the incident in my ByDesign tenant, sit back and wait, for a few hours,or sometimes upto a day, depending on its severity. I thought this was perfectly acceptable, and if our customers were getting the same then everything in the garden would be rosy!

Now, after some time away from pre-sales and customer projects, I am back at the coalface, and I’m more than a little concerned about the support we now have.

Let me explain my current situation..

I have 3 major projects currently underway. Each one of those projects has caused me on 4 or 5 occasions in the last few weeks to raise incidents for my customers in their ByD tenants.

Of course this all went swimmingly, and I received email acknowledgements of the incidents in reasonably short time, and filled me with confidence that I would get a resolution.

Now I am getting email updates along the lines of “We have started processing your incident” and most worryingly I get “We have proposed and solution. please check you incident shortly for an update”. When I have checked my updates in the relevant tenants, there is no update!!!!

Timescales to response seem to be stretching too, and with that the frustration grows! I am also surprised to find out I am getting support from Brazil.

So the conclusion to my ramblings is, does anyone else feel that the ByD cloud support is starting to creal at the seams or is it just a glitch?

What is more frustrating though, is the continued saga of access to the ByDesign buying center for me….

For some reason or other, last Monday 19th Nov, my access was limited to that of a prospect. Hmm, I thought, strange! but I knew that scn.sap.com had been undergoing maintenance that weekend, probably connected.

I raised a support ticket from the business center, I heard nothing for 7 days, I had to chase, they couldnt find my ticket in their support system, even though I called the support number given, and gave the system generated ticket number from the business center. I finally got a resolution today (27th Nov). I hate to think the impact this could have had, had I needed some project resource, access to the buying center etc etc.

What’s the point of a help system if no one responds?

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4 Comments

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  1. Judson Wickham

    Hi John,

    I am intending to write a blog on this very topic, because there is certainly room for improvement, most of which relates to honesty, transparency, and accountability. In summary:

    – Be straightforward about support times. We were always told ByD support is 24/7 and uses the ‘follow the sun’ approach. Yes, someone will pick up the phone 24/7, but your incident is only worked on during Indian working hours and occasionally, as you’ve noticed, Brazil. working hours. Germany only comes to the table for very high priority items, and it seems that China is totally out of the picture now.

    – Honesty: Give us an honest estimate about providing a fix. As you know, an incident could take a day or three weeks to get done.

    – Transparency: No more generic responses like (‘it’s with development’, or ‘we are analyzing your issue’). I want to know who is working on my incident, and what they are doing. I want a full name and I want updates on the work that’s being done. To get this information now I have to call Cloud Support constantly as my customers (very validly) freak out over high priority incidents. I’ve called so much that pretty much everyone answering the phones knows me.

    – Accountability: When SLA’s are not met, and promises not kept, I would like to see some level of accountability.

    I have had candid conversations with the front-line support team, and they feel just as frustrated as we do. We are all advocates for our customers, promising a next-generation experience, and it keeps me up at night when that promise is not delivered. The front-line team has encouraged me to bring up these issues, as they agree.

    The question is, who can we go to?

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    1. John Meadows Post author

      Judson

      Firstly, I’m glad it’s not just me then! I have been amazed at the time lag in getting repsonses. Although once I get a response the indian support team do seem to be thorough and willing to resolve the issue.

      I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to for you on NA to have to deal with indian time zone differences!

      Maybe a Global ByD partner panel is needed here to unify these issues into a single point of contact for both partners and SAP. I’m sure if we made representations to Rainer he could sonn find us the correct escalation point. What do you think?

      John

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  2. Andreas Eissmann

    I’m with you guys. The main problem I currently see is that they often try to clean up their statistic and propose solutions which are no solutions.

    One thing from today:

    I have an open issue by one of my customer and this issue is definitely an error (it’s in time recording). So cloud support wan’t help me cause they don’t have ressources to resolve but I could propose a workaround with some manual steps to the customer…It’s already a hard statement that’s the reason why I then did an escalation and today I got the following questions from escalation team:

    How many users of the customer have this issue?

    How many users would do a manual correction of this issue?

    How many time will it costs for those users to do this manual corrections (workaround)?

    How many user has the customer in general?

    So what are those questions targeting? The escalation team don’t want resolve the issue they search for a reason why it’s easier for the customer to do the workaround insteat that SAP deliver a patch.

    I think we all want to make our solution better why there are still so many people they do not want? We are no enemies!

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    1. Hans Hansen

      I’m in line with the success argument that John is putting forward. As the success grows we are getting more and more clients with requirements that puts the application to the test. These are the situations where the bugs/bad design decisions hits us, and we create incidents to get them fixed.

      Unfortunately my experience is that real bugs/bad designs are not being acknowledged and fixed, rather “the application works as designed”, and post it on ideascale seems to be the suggestion of the day – and that is disappointing.

      I have for the most part very good experience with the guys from Brazil, they come off as dedicated and as knowledgeable for what they are supposed to do.

      Unfortunately that cannot be said when the support comes from other parts of the world. Several times the replies to my incidents has nothing to do with the incident, and the answers are clearly from someone reading from a text book without understanding what the issue is. And that is disappointing too.

      We, as consultants, are at the receiving end – both from SAP support and from the client side, and this is not fostering a productive environment.

      I believe SAP needs to invest more rapidly and heavily in educating the support staff, recognize bugs and get them fixed, and create dedicated implementation documentation to aid and assist the go live efforts.

      As Andreas says – we are not enemies – on the contrary we are in this together.

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