Many customers find they need some kind of support once they have implemented NetSuite but are unsure what is available and what they are going to need.
I shall attempt to classify the various types of support on offer and the type of support a customer may need in selecting the service appropriate to them. I have excluded training, bespoke development and consultancy services from this blog.
The types of support that customers need falls into three broad categories:
- How to do something
- Something seems wrong
- Something needs changing
In turn, the three software set-ups that customers will have fall into three categories:
- Generic NetSuite
- Customer-specific NetSuite customisation
- Bespoke or packaged software that integrates in some way with a customer’s NetSuite instance
NetSuite customers can choose between support from NetSuite or a NetSuite partner, or a combination of both.
The following table describes the differences in offerings. I have used Keystone Data support provision to identify the characteristics of a Solution Provider support provision.
Comparison of support options
|SuiteAnswers with NetSuite licence||NetSuite chargeable SuiteSupport||From Solution Provider|
|Question how to do something||yes||yes||yes|
|Report something seems wrong||yes||Yes (if the problem is with customer customisation the client must arrange for it to be corrected)||Yes (if problem with NetSuite the Solution Provider will report to NetSuite)|
|Request for something to be changed||no||no||yes|
|Covers generic NetSuite||yes||yes||yes|
|Covers customer specific customisation||no||no||yes|
|Covers bespoke or packaged software integrate with customer’s NetSuite instance||no||no||yes|
|On-line submission of questions or cases||Yes for questions||yes||yes|
|Telephone response to questions or cases||No||yes||yes|
|Telephone submission of questions or cases||No||Yes (with gold or platinum)||yes|
|Support available outside working hours||yes – because only available on-line||Yes (with gold or platinum)||Would require special arrangement|
|Special support including back up for system administrator||no||no||yes|
|Maintenance of customisations||no||no||yes|
|Service Level Agreements||no||yes||yes|
If your organisations employ staff or contractors able both to customise NetSuite, and to understand your own implementation of it, I suggest signing up for one of NetSuite’s standard support options and support all your customisations yourselves.
If your organisation employs no staff with any specialist IT or NetSuite knowledge and you used a Solution Provider to undertake all customisation and manage the implementation, I suggest you agree a suitable support service with the Solution Provider (or an alternative if that Solution Provider cannot provide your required service).
Support services from Solution Providers
Most Solution Providers offer a range of support services; some restrict them to NetSuite customers who have bought their NetSuite instance through them or are prepared (and able) to transfer their registered Solution Provider status.
Some Solution Providers (including Keystone Data) are prepared to provide a range of support services to NetSuite customers regardless of whether we are registered with NetSuite as the customer’s Solution Provider.
As a company specialising in delivering NetSuite associated services, like most Solution Providers, we are able to offer a very flexible range of services.
Our services cover all three categories highlighted above (how to do something; something seems wrong; something needs changing) across the three areas highlighted (generic NetSuite; customer-specific NetSuite customisation and instance; bespoke or packaged software that integrates in some way with a customer’s NetSuite instance).
NetSuite support options
NetSuite offer four options that cover the first two categories of support noted above for generic NetSuite support and some limited aspects of customer-specific NetSuite customisation and instances.
These four options are:
- Support included within an instance – includes SuiteAnswers
- SuiteSupport Silver
- SuiteSupport Gold
- SuiteSupport Platinum
Inclusive NetSuite support
The support included within an instance provides a comprehensive, integrated help facility with some pdf manuals. In addition all NetSuite users have access to SuiteAnswers which includes an online portal to get answers to questions.
SuiteSupport Silver provides support during normal working hours: Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm. Cases (cries for help) must be submitted on-line (at any time) and will be responded to either by an email or a phone call from the support desk. A customer can name two contacts.
SuiteSupport Gold is an enhanced version of support which allows for phone submission of cases via a toll free number. Critical or significant problems can be submitted by phone 24 hours a day 7 days a week. A client can have four named contacts.
SuiteSupport Platinum is the highest level of support offered by NetSuite (and therefore the most expensive). It allows for submission of all cases by phone at any time and six named contacts.
In addition it provides a dedicated support team and support manager – this does not mean a team who work exclusively on one customer’s support contract but rather a team who are the only people who will provide direct support to a client. The advantage of this is that the same people will understand a customer’s NetSuite instance and gain a good understanding of the customer’s business as well as a relationship with the customer’s staff. This team also provide a range of pre-release planning help.