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General Chat Thread, RBC Communications in General; Recently I have been getting more and more infuriated by the poor communications from our RBC (or more particularly the ...
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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    RBC Communications

    Recently I have been getting more and more infuriated by the poor communications from our RBC (or more particularly the service desk which is run by another company).

    I do not want this topic to turn into a slagging match about poor service (anything like that WILL be removed) but I do want to know how good the levels of communication are... no names need be mentioned. For instance:
    1. Do you receive updates on new services?
    2. Do you receive status reports? (e.g. a webpage with current service status)
    3. Are you able to speak to the people who fix the problem or is a third party involved?
    4. Do you feel that, when a problem is reported, your problem will be dealt with quickly and resolved?

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    Let me start the ball rolling...

    1. Occasionally in the form of a newsletter - which may or may not actually make it as far as me (it certainly isn't adderssed to me!)
    2. No! Nothing! Nada! Zilch!
    3. I understand the need for a helpdesk but why do they have to insist on acting as a middle-man? Surely it would be more efficient for A to talk to B rather than A talk to C who talks to B who talks to C who then talks to A??????????
    4. TBH... no... I also feel that the helpdesk don't like to admit that things do break - I would be happy with a öh yes, that does appear to have stopped working, sorry... I'll get back to you ASAP"

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    webman's Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    1. No.

    2. No, but we know that they have access to such information.

    3. Yes we have the telephone number to contact the engineers.

    4. No. Emails sent to the address advertised on their website usually bounce (No such address at durhamnet). Then we call them, and are asked to email helpdesk@derwentside. If *that* email gets through it takes days/weeks to be answered, if at all. Chase it up via phone - "Please email helpdesk@blahblahblah" Catch-22.

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    Re: RBC Communications

    1. Updates are sent via our LEA who forward them on. I think this is a weak-point in the system...
    2. No, not that I know of
    3. All problems are logged and eventually I get a call back - sometimes from the people fixing the problem or sometimes from the helpdesk, depending on the nature of the issue.
    4. Generally, no. I have had excellent service from our RBC twice and what I would class as sub-par service about 5 times. I don't contact them that often, as issues generally used to go via our LEA (this is changing now as we connect via VPN to the RBC so our issues are dealt with direct by the RBC.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    Edit: Argh! These slow downs are causing mayhem.

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    Re: RBC Communications

    Seeing as Ric and me have the same RBC, this'll be interesting.

    1. Generally no, I have to go and pro-actively look for news and information. Unless it's CLEO related. They have mailing lists.
    2. No, I monitor their services myself. I generally notice something broken before they do. Unless it's CLEO.
    3. I regularly bypass the 'helpdesk' and talk directly to the relevant people. Especially CLEO related issues.
    4. Only if I don't use the 'helpdesk'.

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    @Geoff: I too monitor things myself. By speaking direct to CLEO you are bypassing the protocols that are put in place.

    You should be talking to 'helpdesk' as your first port of call as they then log all the faults in Lancashire. If you bypass them it gives misleading statistics and 'helpdesk' will continue to say that everything is peachy.

    Really, CLEO should not deal with you directly... it's only because they are such nice accommodating people that they do.

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    I am aware of that Ric.

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    Joedetic's Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    1)No
    2)No
    3)Direct
    4)Sometimes

    It's something i've noticed going into university education, that the broadband supply to the university is a lot more stable and you can get access to the status pages for the whole of the UK network for JANET (NOT who i've rated just above). If primary and secondary education recieved the same level of support that universities do from JANET then it would be excellent. But then again...universities do research and are essentially a large company. But i still dont see why schools shouldnt get good service from RBCs just because they arent cranking out research etc etc.

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    contink's Avatar
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    Re: RBC Communications

    1. Do you receive updates on new services?
    No... The headteachers get an email which they often can't read but despite numerous attempts to be added to the list and promises that it's been done, I get nothing.

    2. Do you receive status reports? (e.g. a webpage with current service status)
    Edited: The website does have a status page which generally provides current info but the fault timeline/log takes "mess" and "confusion" to a whole new level. Phoning the tech support line often has a message if there's any major downtime so that's a plus when you can't access the web.

    3. Are you able to speak to the people who fix the problem or is a third party involved?
    I've now developed a very good contact within the team who I go to when there's a real problem but usually I get first line support and the usual ticket system.

    4. Do you feel that, when a problem is reported, your problem will be dealt with quickly and resolved?
    Depends on who I talk to and the type of problem. In some instances yes.. in others I have to pass it to the headteacher to kick it up the chain.

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    Re: RBC Communications

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff
    3. I regularly bypass the 'helpdesk' and talk directly to the relevant people. Especially CLEO related issues.
    I used to work in Network Systems (CLEO) and the people there hated when people bypassed the helpdesk. 99% of the bypassing calls shouldn't have gone through to them or were trivial and could have been dealt with by the helpdesk. If the call had gone via the helpdesk then it would have been forwarded to the appropriate person.

  12. #12

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    Re: RBC Communications

    I suspect I'm the 1%. I make calls like:

    "Hi, I'm using your web reverse proxy, but HTTPS SSL doesn't work on site https://xxx.yyy.lancs.sch.uk. It appears it's using HTTP rather than HTTPS to talk to port 443 on my web server. Here's the squid configuration you need to fix it...."

    I just get blank looks from the Westfield Centre when I do that to them.

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    Re: RBC Communications

    1. Yes either via email or at the half term/full term Network Managers meetings

    2. Nope but we can connect to a website they setup to check these out.

    3. If the engineers are out of the office then we can l;eave messages with the helpdesk or email/phone the engineer needed.

    4. 99 times out of 100 I'd say yes, the other time is usually because something has happened that they have no control over and they are waiting on someone else.

    Wes

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