When something goes wrong with an application, or if your internet or cable tv goes out, the first thing you do is contact customer support and […]

Why Tiered Support Can Bring You “Teared” Support

When something goes wrong with an application, or if your internet or cable tv goes out, the first thing you do is contact customer support and […]


When something goes wrong with an application, or if your internet or cable tv goes out, the first thing you do is contact customer support and pray that you won’t get a robo service and end up stuck in a loop of pressing buttons just to try and reach someone, right? We’ve all been there and done that. You can hear the agents read from a script, “how does this experience rate for you” — and, of course, you may get the dreaded hold — “hold on please, while I get someone else to assist you as this is beyond my scope of knowledge.” Cue the muzak. Ugh!

Unfortunately, even with enterprise-grade software like netTerrain, some vendors offer tiered support services that can be far more frustrating than helpful. From time-to-time, and especially when answering RFI/RFP questions about Customer Service, we get this question: what are the different tiers of support that Graphical Networks provides?

First, what does the term “tiered services” for Customer Support mean?

It could mean two things:

1. A service tier that is associated with the severity of an issue. This could help organization’s structure service tickets that are mission-critical, and those that are useful and helpful but not essential.

2. Or this could refer to the level of knowledge and experience your customer service agents have, based on their level of knowledge. So, for example, new hires handle the simplest questions at Level 1, while those with a little more tenure and knowledge advance to Level 2, and so on. Only those with a lot of experience and expertise make it to the top tiers.

When I’m asked about service tiers we offer at Graphical Networks, my response is we do not have different tiers of service, as we believe tiered service tends to lead to larger queues and ticket backlogs.

Why? We believe a more collaborative approach is best suited to help our customers, who use our network documentation, DCIM, and OSP software solutions — and we put the customer first. We give every customer the same level of support — whether it’s a one-person IT team with less than 500 objects or one of the world’s largest companies with over 50,000 objects.

The process is simple for our customers:

When you need help, there’s no buttons to press and no being placed on hold indefinitely.

You simply open a ticket using our customer support website. One of our skilled support staff, or even the Director of Customer Support, then reviews the request — on the date it’s received. We always have team members available to review tickets immediately and they resolve the ones they’re able to right away.

Why is this our approach? Why won’t we offer tiered support?

We want our customers to continue to use the software for years to come — that’s the true marker of quality. Our support team understands how important our customer’s issues are — and that getting issues resolved as quickly and easily as possible greatly impacts their experience with our software.

With the many combined years of netTerrain knowledge that our customer support and support engineers have, issues can be resolved quickly, as our customer support agents help each other to solve the problem. There’s no passing the buck on an issue and forgetting about it. Our support team is in it together and equally responsible for every issue: each support rep on the team — from our most seasoned reps to our newest — sees issues being solved and learns: they’re constantly being challenged, expanding their knowledge, and growing.

To summarize, with a collaborative support model, Graphical Networks centers its service around our customers, and provides faster resolution times, small support backlog, and a stronger collaboration and commitment.

Fred Koh
Fred Koh
As a seasoned sales executive, Fred Koh serves as Director of Sales and is responsible for Graphical Networks sales and channel partner program, marketing strategy, and operations.

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