VoIP News Industry News & Trends VoIP Views

Our Thoughts on the Packet8 Service Outage

by Leo Zheng

What we think the customer notification process should be when a service outage occurs.

Published: January 13, 2010

Service outages happen. Sometimes it’s the result of something you did, but more often than not it’s caused by factors completely out of your control. If you’re in the business of providing a hosted service over the Internet, then chances are that this unfortunate situation will happen to you at one point or another. We would all love to say that it has been XX months or X years since we’ve had any problems, but the fact of the matter is that when something like this happens (and it most likely will), what’s most important is how you deal with it.

Now we don’t know exactly what occurred but from what we’ve heard and read (there’s quite a bit of chatter on Twitter from actual packet8 customers), it seems like Packet8’s customer service/response during the outage was a bit iffy.

We had a little outage ourselves last year and we dealt with it by putting up multiple posts on our blog, posting regular updates to keep our customers informed on Twitter, and responding quickly to any questions. It was vital for us to keep up a constant stream of communication with our customers to let them know that we were doing everything in our power to get things back up and running. In this day and age, there’s little to no excuse for leaving your customers high and dry, especially when they need you the most.

After our outage, we put up an explanation of exactly what happened and everything we were going to do to prevent it from ever happening again. Industry analyst Gary Kim specifically mentioned us on his blog in a post entitled, ‘The Way to Deal with an Outage'.

I’m not going to sit here and tell all the Packet8 customers reading this that we’re going to be outage-free for the next 10 years. We can’t promise that. No provider can.

What I will say is that as a company, we’ve always prided ourselves on our customer service and that will remain the same, whether everything’s running at 100% or not.