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Author Topic: The By-Product of Hosted  (Read 4209 times)

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Offline EV607797

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  • Location: Fayetteville, NC
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The By-Product of Hosted
« on: March 14, 2020, 09:51:41 PM »
Everyone here knows that I'm no fan of hosted IP "systems" at all.  Not necessarily because they don't work (some do), but because of the fact the so called 'installers' don't know a bloody thing about telephone systems.  The sales reps aren't far behind them.  This shows in the wake of mess that they leave behind once they've accomplished their deed.

A few months ago, we received a call from a new customer, stating that about half of their phones had dial tone, but couldn't dial out.  It turned out that the bean counter who bought hosed, oops, I meant hosted, failed to take into account the phones in common areas, unused offices, etc.  Yes, eight of their 16 phones had been left in place, and without mention, still connected to their original key system.  That new $150.00 monthly bill just doubled on them.  Great work on behalf of the bean counter, the 'sales' rep and most importantly, the 'technician' who left them in this situation.

More recently, a self-storage facility did the same thing and swallowed an IP pill.  They failed to account for the numerous door entry boxes and gate phones scattered throughout the facility.  After numerous work-arounds and external devices, oh and about $2,000.00 more in hardware, they finally got it to sort-of work.  Of course, the ATAs and added monthly cost had to be tacked on.

Today, it got even better.  We received an emergency call on a Saturday from a long-term customer of over 20 years.  This condominium complex originally had a Toshiba Perception installed with a hotel/motel package.  We took it over for maintenance from a now defunct competitor.  This was just so that there was an in-house phone extension in each condo unit, basically a great big intercom system.  When we arrived this morning, all was working fine at the Perception cabinet, but no CO lines.  Easy fix, right?

Oh no...  Again, someone opted for the hosted IP "solution" with the local cable TV provider.  The on-site staff had no idea that we were no longer their service company, nor did we.  Our sticker was on the Toshiba KSU and they called us.    Naturally, we came running when they called.  Yep, they had ported all of their numbers over to COX for their hosted administration office phones.  Checked their CATV modem and sure enough, completely dark.  Called COX and of course, it all looks good on their end.  But what about the door entry systems, elevator phones, etc?

In all three instances, these decisions were made without any forethought whatsoever, just that almighty buck.  More importantly, nobody bothered to ask about the removal of the old system(s) and phones.  These suit boys just plugged in their cat5 cables and hit the road.  Of course, the customers never contact us until well after the damage is done.

Paging and other things like loud ringers, shared line appearances, etc. happen all the time for us in these instances  and we do OK in resolving them.  Always at an unexpected additional expense, of course.  I remember back in the day that we would often have to yank out an entire system installation if a customer even misunderstood how a feature worked.  That's just what we did to save face.  Now, these yokels go out there and promise anything for a signature.  The customers rarely make them yank their goods out though.  They just pay us the extra money to fix their problems, where possible.

Advertising stickers on the wall in the telephone closet work miracles for advertising.  They also bring up situations when customers need real phone people to service them, not just kids in nylon slacks.  OK, I'm done.
Ed Vaughn

(910) 833-6000 (V)   (540) 623-7100 (C)

Offline hbiss

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  • Location: Westchester County, NY
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Re: The By-Product of Hosted
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2020, 11:30:19 PM »
Gee, I don't know but when I met with a prospective customer I would walk around with them and determine how many phones they need from what's there. Then I would determine the Fax lines and locations, modem lines and locations, alarm lines, door phones, elevator phones etc. How were the lines delivered to the building, the premises and where. What are all the numbers billed to you or otherwise involved. What are the carriers.

I would want to know everything about their telephone system, wiring, auxiliary equipment and service. That way there would be no errors or omissions because I would be the one to determine what was needed and the proposal based on it.

I wasn't some kid playing salesman and asking the customer what they need. Sure, sign here.


I gotta get out of this business...

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