Sunday, September 3, 2017

Customer Support at OpaVote

I'm using this blog post to expand on how you can get customer support for using OpaVote for online voting and our philosophy of customer support.

Customer support is a tricky thing. Most customers are great and a pleasure to deal with, but then there are those customers... The ones who probably spend their free time writing vitriolic comments on blog posts and news articles.

 First off, we provide top notch support. When you contact us for support, you reach me, an expert in online voting who knows the OpaVote product upside down and backwards. I can understand your question and quickly provide a clear and concise answer.

As a consequence, we cannot provide 24x7 support. We only want experts answering your questions and we don't think your typical 24x7 operators are able to meet our high standards. We do, however, answer many support questions immediately, most within an hour, and just about all of them within 12 hours. Check our online forum to see our response times.

You can reach us in three different ways:
  • Online Chat -- You'll see a yellow chat icon on the bottom right of most pages. Click on this to start a chat session with us. This is available during extended business hours (8am to 8pm Boston time) and is best for simpler questions. If you don't get a response right away, leave your email address in the chat box and we'll respond to you via email.
  • Support Forum -- We have a support forum that works better for longer questions. We prefer this over sending a private email to us, because others may benefit from seeing the question and answer.
  • Private Email -- You can send us a private email as well to the team@ email address. Use this if you question relates to payments or any other sensitive information.
Before contacting us for support, please make sure that you (1) read our documentation and (2) try a test election. Many questions can be answered this way and this is often the quickest way to get an answer to your question. We are generous about answering questions, but if your question can easily be answered by one of the aforementioned ways, we may politely ask you to RTFM (read the fine manual).

Some questions are too complicated for our free support.  The following are some examples:
  • Asking us to fix a mistake you made to an election in progress. This requires a manual database update that we prefer to avoid.
  • Detailed or complicated questions about the different voting methods we provide.
  • Step by step assistance about how to run an OpaVote election for those people who don't want to read our fine manual.
For questions like these, we need to ask you to pay a support fee of US$50 for up to one hour of support.

We hope this blog post helps you better understand our support process and we look forward to helping you with your elections!