When something goes wrong with your computers, it’s nice to know you can call someone or go online and they can fix it real quick – remotely – with no service call having to be scheduled.
Support.com is one of many services which help consumers and small businesses with their computer problems, all via the Internet.
I know many small business owners and their staff who are simply annoyed with technology. Things don’t work during the course of the day and they don’t know where to turn for help. Their computer has some “issue” and if they don’t have an IT consultant to turn to, as many small businesses do not – they turn to a “friend” to help. Sometimes this friend (or uncle, cousin or brother), is available to help, sometimes they are not. If they are not an expert, they might TRY to help but find that the solution is now worse. This is where remote computer support can help.
Anthony Rodio, Executive Vice President – Worldwide Operations of Support.com sheds some light on the industry and makes the case why small businesses, should consider remote support in this interview.
How should a small business balance using a service from support.com vs their local computer consultant?
In many cases, a less-tech-savvy small businessperson might feel more confident working with a local computer consultant in the initial stages of setting up their small business. For example, if they don’t feel comfortable (or simply don’t feel like) stringing wires and cables, hooking items up to each other, crawling under desks to plug things in, etc
A local, on-site computer expert can also be a huge help in major server configurations, etc.
Beyond that, though, nearly all day-to-day troubleshooting and “critical meltdown” situations can be handled by a simple, easy and convenient remote service like support.com.
Many small businesspeople use the “neighborhood computer guy” or some other partner who is working on barter or for a greatly reduced rate—which is great when you have time on your hands and can schedule something like an office set-up or server maintenance. But, when your system crashes or gets infected with a virus 4 hours before you have a major presentation due to a client, or when you are trying to jam that last 6 hours of billable time in for the month, you can’t wait for your tech guy/cousin’s brothers to get off work and come help you.
That is really the value of remote tech support and support.com- we are there for you when you need us.
On average, it takes less than two minutes for one of our expert Solutions Engineers to answer your call to 1-800-PC-Support, and you are immediately connected to a live person in North America who is ready to solve your problem. We offer a free estimate before we do any work, and our work is backed by a money-back guarantee. Also, all the work is performed while-you-watch, which calms the real security concerns many small businesses have with leaving a tech alone with their equipment and data.
Related to this how does one decide to use Support.com for ad hoc needs vs signing on for a longer term contract?
At support.com, we want to take the burden off small business by providing, in essence, an available, empathetic and cost-effective on-call IT department. Many small business people engage with us in a time-critical crisis where time = money. Our expert solutions engineers are armed with the tools and training to deal with these situations, and we have a whole team of people ready to help which ensures that your business will always be “first in line”, regardless of the size of your business or ongoing budgets with us. We work with you on a per-incident basis until the problem is fixed, which alleviates the uncertainty of signing a “use-it-or-lose-it” contract, or feeling like a per-minute or per-hour tech is moving slowly to pad their billing. Based on interest from small business owners, we are also looking into adding a subscription-based model to our menu of offerings so that small businesses can chose the best option for them.
How does support.com hire its staff? Are they consultants or full time staff members? I ask from a security point of view to the customer – there is a “stranger” accessing the client computer
All of our expert Solutions Engineers are full-time staff members of support.com and are based in North America. They undergo regular training to keep up with changes in technology and are held to the strict guidelines and best-practices developed by our parent company SupportSoft (NASDAQ: SPRT), which has more than a decade’s experience solving the technology problems of multi-national, Fortune 500 businesses where information security is critical. Some of these clients include: Bank of America, ADP, Dell, Comcast, and Verizon. We are pleased to offer the same service, expertise and security we’ve delivered to these major corporations to the small business consumer at a fraction of the cost.