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  1. #1
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    Segue\'s Technical Support

    We are currently reviewing the technical support received from Segue. If you have had any experience with Segue and their technical support, I would really appreciate any input that you may have. I have a few questions listed below but feel free to add any issues/concerns not listed here. Thank you for your time.

    1. Have you used Segue’s technical support (telephone or web site)?
    2. Was technical support able to resolve your issue?
    3. If technical support was unable to resolve your issue, did some other source than Segue resolve your issue? If so, who?
    4. What are your general concerns and issues concerning Segue’s technical support?
    5. Would you have chosen SilkTest, or other Segue products, again knowing your experience with their technical support?


    Thank you,

    Lorne Cameron
    School Employees Retirement System
    lorne_sers@yahoo.com


    ------------------
    Lorne Cameron
    Quality Software Engineer
    School Employees Retirement Sytem
    lorne_sers@yahoo.com

  2. #2
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    Re: Segue\'s Technical Support

    Two years ago, Segue Technical Support was competent and responsive. We could usually get an answer within 24 hours and the support staff did a fine job of following up on support issues. However, last year the quality of their support began to diminish. Most support reps seemed to have a limited understanding of the product, and answers came days or weeks later and only after numerous calls (and usually after we had developed a workaround to the problem).

    While Segue was shipping version 2.1.x upgrades of Silk, we were forced to continue using the older 2.0 version of the product because the newer versions were unstable or riddled with bugs. We paid over $8K for a one year Maintenance and Upgrade Agreement, yet all of the upgrades that we received were too unstable to deploy in our test lab. Using the older version of Silk prevented us from deploying any automated tests using IE4 or 5, or Netscape 4.5x browsers. And Windows 98 support seemed nowhere in sight.

    Last year, under pressure from my manager to have Segue resolve our issues or deploy a different test automation tool, we pressured the Regional Account Manager and a Technical Sales Engineer to meet with us in person to address our issues. We resorted to pressure tactics (there are lots of QAP/Silk customers here at Intel, and even more potential customers representing tens of thousands of dollars in potential LOST sales) to finally get Segue to take our problems seriously.

    It was about this time that Segue announced that they were bringing Jenny Jones back and putting her in charge of Technical Support. I agree with AJ that this was a very good move. Our issues were ultimately resolved by Andrea Waldorf who manages the newly formed Solutions Support group, which was set up to work more closely with certain customers, and provide a higher level of technical expertise.

    Andrea is tremendously knowledgeable about the product, and if she doesn't have the answer, she knows who does. She was able to provide us with workarounds and patches to Silk version 5.0. More recently, when we found issues while testing with Win98, a member of her team responded quickly to provided us with an updated DLL to resolve our new issues.

    I'm not a Segue employee either, but I WAS a disgruntled user. I am very satisfied with the level of support that I have received from the Solutions Support group. My only concerns now have to do with Win2000 support and the need for Segue to improve their QA on Silk release and upgrades.

    Tony Mrozinski
    Sr. Software Test Automation Engineer
    Home Networking Operations
    Intel Corporation

  3. #3
    AJ
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    Re: Segue\'s Technical Support

    This topic may bring this thread to a long discussion.

    A little history:

    Segue has had good Technical support until sometime last year. Their customer base grew and their support department shrunk.
    It got so bad that I've heard of people not getting call backs for weeks or sometime ever!

    This forum here was started as a result, and has expanded ever since.

    Segue has since then placed Jenny Jones "nice lady, no relationship to the TV hostess " and established a technical support devision based in Ireland, to work with the existing one in MA.

    Support has gotten much better since then. Though still the fact that their product line is growing rapidly, you may find it harder to get help on "newer" products than old ones.

    No I'm not a Segue employee and I'm not exactly defending them, but I'm not a disgruntled user either.


    ------------------
    AJ Alhait
    BetaSoft Inc.
    AJ Alhait
    BetaSoft Inc.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Re: Segue\'s Technical Support

    Unfortunately Tony, I have been in the same position as you when it came to support from, and how to deal with it at Segue.

    I have worked on-site at our clients and helped them with their Silk problems, but it was like pulling teeth to get my own company to purchase any Segue products because of support concerns. I did find that if you represent a big enough company and make a major stink you will get good support, but if you are a small guy going through the normal channels it really hasen't improved all that much. Although I am trying to change the perception here Segue has lost a rather large sale of Silk Performer mainly because of support concerns.

    I am currently getting ready to performance test an app we developed for a client who has a 2500 user license for Performer and about a dozen Silktest licenses with suuport for all. I am having the same type of problems with their consulting group that I had with support (Lack of attention and/or response, no guarantees of who can be scheduled, no consulting profiles etc...)

    The whole company seems to have an attitude, I have dealt with them for over 4 years and it never changes. I have good luck with individuals there, but if I try to be a common user I get treated like trash. All that said, I still use Silktest because it is by far the best around.

    These opinions are mine and do not represent my employer.

    Tom Woodman, Senior Associate - QA

    Micro Modeling Associates Inc.
    1999 MCSP Partner of the Year!
    New York

    woodmant@mmanet.com


    [This message has been edited by woodman (edited 09-09-1999).]

  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    Re: Segue\'s Technical Support

    I have had both good and bad experiences with Segue support. With regards to QAPartner and Win32 the response was usually pretty good.

    Unfortunately it was not the same with Silk and web (html,java,etc.)

    They probably did not make a great investment in their QA and Support departments when they started rolling out the new technologies. Sound familiar ?

    But think of it in terms of MSDev and IBM Visual Age or JRE. What kind of support does you developer get from them? My meaning is that a good developer (developer==4Test programmer) can usually find a work around. So if its a blatent absence of functionality you have every right to get the support you need, but often I find that it is the implementation or lack of technical expertise in a particular area. 4Test is the best langauge out there, an organization serious about automation should have an expert at it employed with them.


    ------------------
    Scott Kavanagh
    mailto:automater@mindspring.com
    mailto:thekman@mindspring.com
    Scott Kavanagh
    mailto:automater@mindspring.com
    mailto:thekman@mindspring.com

  6. #6
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    Re: Segue\'s Technical Support

    I do have lots of experience in dealing with Segue's technical support. Most of my experience is related to SilkRadar (and QA Radar) support but we also use Silk Test here so hopefully my co-worker will respond as well.
    First of all, the tech support varies per product. We were told by Segue that Performer is their biggest $-maker so most of their support goes to this product. Radar generates much less revenue so dispite the $$$ we've given them for 100+ seats of this product, I find their support to be extremely poor. If I get a rep on the phone, they are courteous and try to help. The problem is that I don't think anyone there can fix Radar! I don't think they understand it. The person who created Radar in the first place left the company and apparently no one else took over.

    The documentation is pretty worthless once you get past the initial installation. It glazes the surface and addresses only the most obvious GUI functions.

    Also, they don't seem to test their fixes, patch files/upgrades before suggesting them. It amazes me that they provide a QA product that has had so little QA done on it. There are many, many bugs in Radar.

    If you e-mail a defect to support@segue.com, you get back a nice note with a tracking number and they promise to contact you within 24 hours. Don't believe it!! Never happens. The tracking number is annoying enough because recently they revised their numbering schema so that they no longer recognize the 5 digit numbers they used to give out and they have to do a search on it before they can help you.

    If you call on the phone, you don't usually have to wait on hold for too long. The worst thing is that even if you get a tech support person who can help you, they won't if the problem has already been assigned to someone else. They will transfer you to them which often results in you being sent to voice mail or getting disconnected. Once I've been connected to a support person/developer directly, they are helpful and willing to have dialogues in e-mail or on the phone concerning the issue. This does not mean that the problem gets resolved however.

    I know they wish to do better because the management of tech support was surprised to find that we felt the support was so lacking and she was responsive to this.

    As with any purchase, call tech support to see how fast you get through. Ask how a problem would be resolved on the product of interest, how long you'd have to wait, how many people could address it, etc.

    To answer your question #5. No. Like the product, don't like the TS. It leaves MUCH to be desired. Courtesy only gets you so far, what I need are solutions!!!

    I agree with the lost sales comments that others have posted. Considering the fact that we are going to need to add about 400 more licenses for our defect tracking system in the near future, I am starting to lobby for another product. I don't hold this over their heads when dealing with TS but after reading Woodman and Tony's messages above, maybe it would help.

    In Radar, I suspect we are reaching the limits of scalibility. These limits were promised (in reality) but apparently weren't tested in reality, only in theory.
    Anyone else out there using Radar? Would love to discuss workarounds for Radar problems.

    Thanks.

 

 

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