I was invited to join our management team for a 2.5 day visit with the product group regarding the future of OCS 2007 and the current state of the business.
The reason to speak about OCS 2007 was to make sure that we (support) were hearing directly from the product group what was going to be coming our way in the future release and to be sure they could ask questions about the new technologies. Some items I can be sure to mention are those things we have stated publicly so that would include the support for ICE (STUN and TURN) for NAT traversal and the additional audio/video changes with conferencing and Roundtable and last but not least – telephony or voice with the new hardware. Kevin Johnson demonstrated this in the June event which you can find at http://www.microsoft.com/uc
Ok so everyone was sufficiently scared, worried, eyes wide open to the freight train bearing down on us, by the way did I mention our team also supports all the networking for the OS which means all the new Vista stuff – yikes. We then get to present to them about support, how are we structured, how a call gets routed from start to finish, how we analyze calls to get them resolved faster and how many calls and how much time it takes to solve them. We then provide a roll-up from the call-coding, an aside here – when we say we need a new case it is because we need to track how many calls we get on a particular subject and then how long they take to resolve and what the resolution is. With the call coding we can tell them what the top labor generators are and provide suggestions on ways to improve – new tools, a wizard, some manner of education or analyzer that gives a report on possible issues with the current config. My job is to present some of this but then to speak mostly on the subjective aspect of support. I will give the color commentary shall you say about the LCS support calls.
While things may not get resolved as quick as you want, I can tell you truthfully that if you want something changed we have the process to handle it and if you were to call and speak to me today, I would probably get you to request the desired change in OCS 2007 while they are still actively developing the product. Because before it ever reaches RTM, they will stop taking changes and then you will have to justify what you want with a lost revenue, or business sale or how much more productive (money) you would be with the feature. These guys are already thinking about the next 2 releases!