Escalations vs. Severity Increases
By cwarticki on Jul 18, 2007
The Customer Support Management team travels the country speaking at UserGroups, Conferences, onsite and online with customers. The Support topic of greatest misunderstanding is that of Escalation.
My objective is to bring this subject into greater awareness.
First, Escalations are NOT Severity Increases. Allow me to expand that statement. Severity is a definition of business impact.
Severity 1 = down production environment or mission critical application that is severely impacted.
Severity 2's, 3's and 4's are lesser degrees of business impact.
Customers tend to artificially increase severity as opposed to escalation.
There are distinct differences between the two.
Second, Escalations are defined as Bringing Management Attention to your Service Request. This is very important. Oracle Support and the management team take a lot of pride in the fact that we are accountable to our customers and made accessible to them.
Third, Escalations are a positive experience. Nobody is getting in trouble. The engineer who owns your issue is not getting punished, nor is the customer's organization being singled out. Escalations exist to place our customers in a direct, two-way dialogue with the Manager for the team that owns your issue. That dialogue has 1 goal - to get your issue back on track and closer to resolution.
Customers can escalate any Service Request, for any Severity, at any time.
The process for Escalation is very simple.
- Initiate escalation by calling the respective 800# for your Product Support Team
- Feel free to update your SR/Case by documenting that you've requested escalation, however do not initiate escalation via electronic means.
- Do not Escalate by calling your account/sales team - common mistake.
- Provide the Support Engineer who answers your call your existing Service Request/Case number and request "to speak to the Escalation Manager"
- Do not ask for an update in the SR/Case - this is the #1 mistake.
- Do not ask for an increase in Severity/Priority - this is the #2 mistake.
- The Manager will be identified and notified and will contact you back - typically in less than 30 minutes.
- During that discussion, express your concerns, develop an agreeable action plan and commit to open communication with that manager on an ongoing basis.
For more details on Escalation, including RE-escalation to senior levels of Support Management, please use these links.
- MetaLink - Note 364290.1
- Customer Connection - Solution ID 201007520
- Siebel Customer Support - MetaLinkv3
Comments are welcome. Have a great day/week.
Sr. Customer Support Manager
The CSM team can provide your organization free training on this topic and many more subjects.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a session for your company.