IT support is an important part of the everyday operations of all Companies. Premium Support Services are on-call contract services for a particular software program or many programs and databases that extends past the manufacturer’s warranty support on the product. Premium Services Support takes it one step further and actually supports the use of the product with training, assistance when users run into errors or issues, provides knowledge transfer from experts on uses of the product, develops additional customer additions or interfaces, and maintains the product in the best interests of the customer. Premium Support provides the peace of mind that the systems running will be supported on demand and supported consistently by experts.
Contracting with Premium Support Services gives Clients that subscribe access to professional specialists for a specific software application. While the support may not be needed often, the ability to call upon assistance is available 24/7, depending on the level of service required. Contracts vary in what a Client is looking for with several factors to consider with emergency 24/7 assistance, administration of service levels for response times, and reporting on events and issues.
One way that Premium Support Services comes into play for Clients where it may not be cost effective to employ a full-time employee for a specific application or process. This allows for better use of funds elsewhere in the IT Department budgets. It also cuts down on the rising cost and overhead of maintaining an active employee to support a specific software application or functional process on an ad-hoc basis.
Premium Support Services also allows companies to optimally manage their product support with more adaptability to the changing product environment. Rather than committing to internal support, Clients can adapt easier with Premium Support to certain software applications declining in use world-wide, being replaced by competitors’ products that are superior, and no longer supported by the manufacturer. Another is that some applications can be older and harder–to–support products with few tech experts left in the workforce. Still another choice is to move specialist employees to other jobs rather than having them maintaining software applications that are being phased out. For these reasons, clients can then begin to reduce their costs to maintain by signing on with Premium Support.
A great example of a Premium Support solution that ZCom provides is for INFOR’s Masterpiece Accounting and Financial software. Masterpiece is an older model accounting and financial solution that fewer companies are running and maintaining. There are also fewer specialists that have the knowledge and expertise to support this product effectively in the world market. ZCom can provide this specialist support with Masterpiece experts to Clients that require assistance and quick resolutions to minimize impacts in their business. ZCom offers not only application assistance, but also technical assistance for all Masterpiece Clients. This is very valuable for Clients, as they can get excellent on-demand assistance, covering all aspects of the product, for a product that is no longer mainstream.
Premium Support Service is also utilized for support of newly acquired and implemented software applications and solutions for your business. Almost all software applications come with a support period from the manufacturer and the implementation consultant. These are usually for basic services like troubleshooting issues, working out bugs, and correcting errors on installation and integration. Premium Support steps in on top of this and remains long after the initial Go-Live Support phase is complete. As an ongoing professional support function, this proves valuable for Clients taking on something new and eliminates the headache of training internally and supporting internally immediately.
As your Company weighs the pros and cons of Premium Support, the main factors to consider are the costs of downtime, the costs of maintaining the product in-house, and access to specialized professional support for the product – whether it is a legacy or a new product. Premium Support is often a lower cost than maintaining in-house, as cost is based on real usage of support services and can be budgeted and adjusted for economic turns. While in-house staffing costs with IT professionals can be significant for any sized businesses, Premium Support often is a fraction of that cost. For example, an IT professional for a small number of specializations can be upwards of $80,000 in salary and benefits, Premium Support contracts can be as low as $35-40,000 per year and cover many more different software systems, databases, and manage processes more effectively. If you are considering a Premium Support service for your organization then speak to one of our experts today to find out more: https://zcomsolutions.com/contact-us/
Author: Jesse Albright