Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Microsoft is Stupid part 2

So you've probably heard me rant about Microsoft and their crazy antiquated partner unfriendly systems before.  Bear with me for another one.  Here's an analogy. Let's say you bought a new car.  You spent like $50,000 on this cool new car (real $$ analogy here). But the car arrived and there was a ding in the hubcap. Nothing major just needs a replacement wheel cover. So you take it to the dealer and say - hey if it's not too much trouble could you swap out the wheel cover? This one's defective. What if the dealer's response was - nope. Can't do that. If you like though we can take the car back, refund your money, cancel your loan, issue you a new car which will take 48 to 96 hours, and then you can arrange for payment all over again.  Oh and no we can't loan you a car to use in the meantime, you'll have to wait here at the dealership.

So here's where the analogy fits in. I order Microsoft Open licenses all the time - it's a royal pain in the ass because there are two emails on them that MUST be right. If they're not right things get messed up. One is the client's email - which MUST be a client account with a Microsoft Account attached to it.  The other is the PARTNER email (my email) which must be correct so I can administer it, download ISOs, etc.  If either are wrong you know the only way to fix it.  See above. You have to cancel the order, refund the money, reissue the order with the right info on it, and re-pay for the order. If the order was originally done on a credit card you must refund the credit card and then re-bill the credit card.  AND they ding you at the distributor for returns - over a certain number and they start giving you penalties every time you do one.  This last time I said - screw it, I'm going to let the dude who is the Microsoft rep at my distributer place the order so it doesn't get screwed up. Because it's a big, important order that is time critical.  He places 2 orders, both with my email as the partner contact.  They have EXACTLY the same contact info on them. One is attached to me. The other gets attached to my BOOKKEEPER'S ACCOUNT! WTF. She doesn't even have an account. As usual even though this is just a field in a database no one can actually fix that without reissuing the licenses. I'm not going to do that.  So I guess I'll be creating an account under HER credentials so I can transfer rights to MY credentials because Microsoft can't program their way out of a paper bag.

So what's the final lesson for my entrepreneurial readers?  Design your systems so that simple errors can be fixed easily.  Make it so that a user can fix a mistaken email, or other data point quickly and easily without any trouble, and never even needs to call a rep to have it repaired. Because that way you avoid BOTH the rant above and the inevitable additional bad press and bad customer service reputation that companies like Microsoft have.