Hot Water For All!
Posted by: Ron Kallam
Ron Kallam is a Quality Assurance Coordinator, acting as a key part of the NTS Quality Team. He’s a Six Sigma Black Belt who directs NTS quality initiatives, monitors and controls quality metrics and streamlines company processes and procedures to exceed customer expectations.
Most people would agree, myself included, that an unlimited supply of something worthwhile is a good thing. In the web hosting business the first thing people think of when they hear the word “unlimited” is “unlimited disk space and bandwidth.” At Newtek we don’t provide shared plans with unlimited resources, at least not in the conventional sense. Let me share a story to explain what I mean.
I was a member of the U.S. Army Honor Guard stationed at Ft. Myer, Virginia, and I lived off post in a high rise apartment complex in Arlington. This apartment complex had hundreds of tenants. During the weekdays, I would get up and take a quick hot shower and rush to make the first formation of the day at 5:45 am. Although early, it wasn’t so bad. The elevator was quick and there was never any traffic which made my commute very fast. On the return trip home, during rush hour, the story was entirely different.
A slow commute, tons of traffic and the reoccurring “ding” of the elevator stopping at each floor herding off and on passengers was a test of one’s patience. But then the weekend would arrive. Nice and relaxing, except for no hot water… ARG! Where is the hot water?! It was used up from everyone doing last week’s dishes, last week’s laundry and the guy taking a 26-minute shower to try to make his hang over go away. Great. Where were the controls?! Anyone in the complex could use as much of the hot water as they wanted with no regard for anyone else. What did that mean? I like my hot water, so it was time to move.
After talking to several different apartment complex reps, I finally met one that made me feel comfortable there would be enough hot water for everyone. She explained that this was a modern luxury apartment complex and each unit had its own water heater. “Excellent!” I replied and then asked about the rent. I let her know that she was more expensive than the complex down the road. She replied, “You get what you pay for don’t you think?” I signed the lease and enjoyed my warm showers and other amenities as well.
So what do showers and apartment complexes have to do with web hosting quality and resources? Servers with share plans only have a limited amount of resources to be shared amongst all customers. To give unlimited resources is not feasible just like an apartment complex saying they can give unlimited hot water. There is a limit, although it can be replenished with time. If we offered unlimited resources to everyone, a good portion of our customer base would be forced to endure cold showers.
Here at NTS we offer “Quality and Integrity.” Our shared servers are set up in the most optimal and fair environment for the highest, most reliable service available. To promise something that can’t be delivered is not the NTS way.
That being said, we DO offer customers a number of “unlimited resources.” For example, all of our customers have unlimited customer support time. Our agents are directed to spend as long as it takes to resolve customer issues. Quality over quantity. I can tell you, that is not a common directive of many support centers. Along with our frontline staff, our management team stands by our quality standard and is always available for customers as well.
As a Quality Assurance Coordinator, I strive to understand the “voice of the customer.” If you have any comments about any of my blogs, please post them. I would like to hear from you.