BAMA Mission Accomplished

True to his word Top Cat emailed the right people inside our company. He knew which cages to rattle I suppose. Impressed with his follow through I finished reading his emails and attached forwards from other employees feeling like Top Cat meant what he said. In my eyes he had more credibility. More importantly he made the right decision to question our poor handling of BAMA.

Factory Peasant,

Looks like it is solved. Thanks for bringing this up.

Top Cat
FY05: How will We delight our Customers today?

———-

Hello all,

I just exchanged VMs with the owner of the BAMA website and think all is well. We have sent him a copy of a license he is happy to sign. He can then return the manuals (all 530 of them) to the site. To make sure this doesn’t happen again I’ve asked legal to draft a new more user/customer friendly policy and they have agreed. I have also corresponded with almost all of the BAMA users that sent complaining e-mails to our lawyer.

I’m just waiting for an LSCA input to launch the lawyer on writing the new policy.

Mike

———-

In parallel with Top Cat I continued following public discussions on Yahoo equipment forums. Rather wisely, Bill and Dave’s company planted an employee on the forums to help ease the situation. Many Yahoo forum users reacted negatively to our heavy-handed policy against BAMA. Lurking on the forums for some time I watched an employee named “Dave” run public relations interference and solicit suggestions from the forum community with regards to other product documentation they would like to see on our customer-facing website. Prior to the arrival of Dave I used the Yahoo equipment forums on the down low to help people fix their gear or source parts we were not willing to assist them with. In order to throw Dave and any other sneaky employees off my trail I posted to the group infrequently using my alias. Sometimes I deliberately answered forum user’s questions incorrectly or acted like a wingnut just to keep them thinking I was not working for Bill and Dave’s company. After laying low over a period of a couple of weeks and reading Dave’s posts I decided to email him from inside the company to see if there was anything I could do to help.

———-

Hi Dave.

I’ve been following your posts on the Yahoo equipment forum and I wanted to say you’re doing a great job on this. I assume this is happening as an offshoot of the XXXXXXX vs. BAMA episode that took place recently, as well as finally addressing a customer feedback issue with regard to the lack of content on the main company website. This is all really positive and I’m very happy to see it taking place. It’s excellent PR for the company and it will demonstrate to customers we offer some form of support long after a product has been discontinued. It will also be useful to some of us here working in the product lines.

Recently we had a customer 837X RF Sig Gen come back to the factory for warranty repair. Unfortunately when the 837X line was sent into obsolescence and discontinued earlier this year everything as far as documentation was jettisoned from the line. Our technicians didn’t even have a product manual anywhere on site to help with troubleshooting the box and when they checked the XXXXXXX website they were extremely frustrated to discover no .pdf of the service manual was available. So, adding these manuals to the company website will be helpful to external customers as well as internal employees.

I’m sure you’re already aware of the resources available to you for processing manuals into electronic form, but just in case I’ve forwarded along some info from Mike K. He mentions a fairly quick process for scanning service manuals but I have no idea if this is already available to you. In any case good luck with this. If there’s anything I can do to help out feel free to hit me up, I’d be happy to volunteer some of my own time to expedite the project.

Factory Peasant

———-

Factory Peasant,

I’m smiling as I write this. I actually work for Mike K., and I just sent out 3 minutes ago a request to support people across EPSG to track down manuals for this very reason. My message is attached in case you want to forward it along to anyone. I’m trying to make Mike’s “quick process” into something more robust and ongoing. The drive for it comes from consistently strong customer feedback that content for older products is one of the key things missing from our site. We think it will boost ACS/customer satisfaction scores to add these manuals–that’s the bottom line.

I also was in contact with the BAMA folks during their struggles with us, and I will probably approach them to use some of the scans they currently have out on their site. This effort isn’t a result of the BAMA incident, but that certainly points out the importance of these old manuals to our customers. The reception I’ve gotten from the Yahoo group has really been heartening!

I’ve also spoken with Jim S., our legal beagle. We’ve standardized our approach to these manuals providers to let anyone who asks place out-of-support manuals on their sites IF it’s for free. I’ll be mentioning that as I work with customers in the Yahoo group and other places.

Thanks for your support. Please feel free to direct anyone with good support ideas my direction!

Regards,

Dave

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~ by factorypeasant on July 9, 2008.

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