We already did a post a while back, titled 10 things that tech supporters can't stand, which outlined the 10 things that drive us all (us being tech supporters) a bit batty when you have already called. The purpose of that post was to show you how to treat us a bit better. The purpose of this post? To enlighten you on 12 rules for calling tech support. Keep in mind, there is a bit of overlap!
1) Call when the issue is happening
This is huge! If you're having an issue that happens randomly, don't call and say "It wasn't working earlier, can you take a look?" Unless you have a screenshot or wrote down and error, we don't have much to go on. It's best to call when the issue is occurring.
2) Reboot your computer BEFORE you call
A lot of problems really are fixed by a reboot. Doing this before you call IT can reduce the time you waste waiting for tech support to reboot it for you. On average, 25-30% of calls are resolved with a reboot.
3) Leave a note of how best to reach you
If you are out of the office having issues with remote connectivity, for example, you should leave your cell number or home phone. Submitting an email ticket without that means that we won't be able to reach you.
4) Have time set aside for the call
The worst thing you can do is to submit a service ticket or call tech support and then tell them you don't have time at that moment for a tech call. If you don't have time, do one of two things; put a line in the email about what time you can be contacted, or wait to submit the ticket/call.
5) Don't complain to us
Sure, you can explain the issue to us, but complaining won't get you anywhere but on our nerves! We know that there's a problem, and we're trying to fix it for you.
6) Answer our questions, we ask them for a reason
We aren't always right next to you, so we don't know what has and has not been tested. Each question we ask has a purpose and is part of the process of troubleshooting. Sure, some questions might sound like no brainers, but anyone can overlook things. Answer it as best as you can, and we will have your sorted as best as we can. Work with us!
7) Don't question our instructions
We give instructions for what to do for a reason, don't question why we do it. Most of what we do, we've done before, and we have the expertise. Questioning what we ask you to do only lengthens the time of the call, and how much you have to pay
8) Arguing with us doesn't make it any better
I had a customer once, who while I migrated some Exchange users, argued that I shouldn't do what I was doing and that I was going to mess up the server. Explaining why what I was doing was okay took about 20 minutes, which she was billed for. Argue less, pay less.
9) We're just like you, a normal person
Just because we're tech support, doesn't mean you can bully us like it's high school. There is no reason to ever be nasty to us, we're just doing our job and trying to help! If you are nasty to us, chances are we won't be as easy to work with, and this can prolong the call. We make mistakes too, and it happens to everyone. If the problem is something we did, we will acknowledge it, but don't be rude about it. Tech support may not be "prestigious", but it does take a lot of patience and concentration.
10) There's only so much we can do
If your PC won't boot up, and has no power, that's nothing we can fix over the phone. If you get a virus and can't do anything, that's not our fault OR your anti-virus's fault. Nothing is 100%, and there ARE some things that aren't simple fixes.
11) Lying will get you nowhere
Pretending that you don't know why you have a porn-riddled computer is pointless. We can see the files that have been affected, and cookies don't lie. Telling us you haven't installed anything when the logs clearly say you did, doesn't work. Be honest with us, we won't make fun of you, and you'll be back to work in no time!
12) We understand that you aren't tech savvy, you don't need to tell us.
Even during a time where everyone in business environments should be relatively familiar with all of the functions of a computer, we understand that some don't catch on as fast as others. That said, we can only simplify things so much. Don't try and be technical if you have no idea what you are doing or saying. Use plain speak, because telling us your hard drive isn't working when it's actually your PC is only going to make us ask more questions.