THE MICROSOFT SUPPORT ESCALATION SLA – FIRST EVER, COURTESY OF US CLOUD
The Microsoft Support Escalation Service Level Agreement (SLA) at US Cloud guarantees that support tickets are time-bound and automatically escalated by severity.
Enterprises benefit from the Escalation SLA with no more Unified tickets sitting for weeks, frustrating your IT team and end users.
Initiatives: Negotiating Microsoft Contracts | Strategic IT Cost Optimization
Audience: CIO and IT Executives | Sourcing, Procurement and Vendor Management
US Cloud Microsoft Support Escalation SLA
US Cloud is once again the only Microsoft support provider offering a critical Service Level Agreement (SLA) to its enterprise customers, further solidifying its position as the only viable alternative to Microsoft Unified.
In 2018, US Cloud was the first to offer an Initial Response Time (IRT) SLA of 15 minutes or less for all Microsoft ticket severities.
In 2021, Microsoft third-party support leader, US Cloud, is the first to offer a time-bound automated escalation process for all ticket severities with an aggressive SLA behind it. The US Cloud Escalation SLA is financially backed, just like IRT, and standard in all US Cloud Premier Support service agreements.
“We listen to our enterprise clients in order to serve them better each year. They wanted time-bound escalations and this made perfect sense to us. We can’t wait to share this new SLA with Gartner and the rest of our clients. US Cloud will continue to automate and refine our MSFT support services to better serve our rapidly growing global client base.”
– Mike Jones, VP of Microsoft Support Services, US CLOUD
Microsoft Unified Support Has No SLAs
In stark contrast to US Cloud, Microsoft’s new model, Unified Support, offers no Service Level Agreements (SLA) whatsoever. All response times and escalations are “targets” with no financial penalties for service delivery failures. In many cases, this results in languishing support tickets requiring enterprises to demand that their Customer Success Account Manager (CSAM) escalate the Unified ticket.
The resulting internal IT inefficiency is further exacerbated by Microsoft’s shift away from the Technical Account Manager (TAM) model to less expensive (and less technical) CSAMs. Enterprise IT staff now sometimes find themselves “babysitting” support tickets at Microsoft and trying to explain technical issues to less technical CSAMs – who, while empathetic to the Unified customer, often don’t understand the underlying technical issue or severity.
Open Microsoft Support Tickets
One of the top frustrations we hear from Unified support clients at Microsoft is languishing low severity tickets. It’s not unusual for us to see tickets that have been open for 3-4 months with no resolution. As part of US Cloud onboarding, we triage open Unified tickets, addressing high severity tickets first, and set expectations around knocking down the low severity ticket backlog.
The new Escalation SLA gives assurance to new US Cloud clients that open high severity tickets will be handled systematically and rapidly resolved. As a result, these early wins validate enterprise procurement and IT stakeholders’ decision to replace Microsoft Unified with US Cloud.
“Our biggest concern with selecting US Cloud was their ability to escalate tickets to Microsoft and varying delay in escalation. This is a particularly acute concern on high severity issues where every hour matters. They’ve already proven to us they can escalate. The new Escalation SLA gives our stakeholders even more confidence in US Cloud.”
– Richard G, VP of Infrastructure, Global 2000 Manufacturer
Microsoft Support Ticket Status
Ticket status is another Microsoft support frustration being addressed by the Escalation SLA. Both MSFT Unified and US Cloud Premier clients had difficulty getting the status changed on an existing ticket. MSFT Unified clients have to call their CSAM and US Cloud Premier client had to call their TAM.
With the new US Cloud Microsoft Support Escalation SLA, the status of the ticket is automatically updated as it “times out” and is escalated. The US Cloud Support Portal is updated and all relevant client Points of Contact (POC) are alerted.
Microsoft Support Ticket Portal
The ticket portal is your home for all things Microsoft support related. Obviously you can open tickets and check status there, but it also has Power BI reporting on your organization’s particular trends and reporting needs.
The US Cloud Microsoft ticket portal is also the best place to check on Initial Response Time and Escalation SLA performance in any given time period. If you don’t have time to view the reports, don’t worry.
Your Technical Account Manager (TAM) will review them with you during your Quarterly Business Review (QBR) and just before renewal to better tune your services with US Cloud and help get the most out of your Microsoft investments.