To fully understand our customers, we train our Technical Support Analysts in a way that will give us experience from the other side. Every new support employee is responsible for learning how to install and update all of their own software so that we can support the process better. As you work through your install or update, we have compiled a list of questions that will help you prepare for the task at hand, and open helpful conversation before implementing change.
Before you begin your installation, it would be helpful to answer these questions:
- Is this a new installation or an update? (skip to next section if this is an update)
- What software am I installing?
- Where do I want the server to be located?
- Do I meet the minimum requirements of hardware and infrastructure or should I consider upgrading?
- Who will need access, and will those users have permission to access the data?
- How will my users need to access the server from their local workstations?
- Do I want to install a test environment before introducing it live to my users?
- Do I have a good plan to back up my data and handle server failure?
- When do I need this completed by, and what is my plan for deployment?
If you are updating, I would ask the same questions, but I would also add:
- Do I have a current back up?
- Have I updated the latest version on my test environment to ensure a smooth transition to production?
- Do I have a user profile (list of steps to mimic how a user uses the program) to ensure the users’ work flow is not interrupted?
- Have I tested the latest update with my custom programs and integration points with external applications to ensure compatibility and a smooth transition?
- Are there issues in testing that I need to report to HCSS?
- What new features will benefit my users, and how can I train them to use those features?
- Do I have the necessary files to complete the installation?
- Have I scheduled downtime, and notified users to expect an update?
- Is support on hand to help in case something goes wrong? (YES!)
Once you have answered these questions, prepped for anything you did not already have on your list (like backing up your data), and have notified your users that you will be taking them offline momentarily, here are some great resources for you:
During normal office hours, we keep a full staff of support techs, and business solutions specialists that can troubleshoot and help you find answers to your questions. After hours, those same support techs are on-call to make sure your emergencies are given the proper support. Feel free to call us to talk through your process, schedule time if you need a little more guided attention, and just for peace-of-mind, we will be on standby if something does not go as planned.
Our Library of Support Documentation:
Housed at help.hcss.com is our library of support articles. For every case, we require our analysts to attach an existing article or create a new one that will outline the resolution. If another client has encountered the question, there will be an article on the topic. Feel free to use this resource to search for your needs. However, I encourage you to call one of our analysts if the issue is taking you too long to find on your own. The trick to a good keyword search is to start with a vague statement, and then use the category filters on the right side of the search to narrow your topic.
- For a list of installation instructions for all of our products, I would search “Install“
- Then choose the Category Filter to limit the results.
- The same simple search would work for “update” as well.
The “What’s New”:
Every major software release has a “What’s New” document that we, in support, write to highlight key benefits of the latest version. We usually include companion how-to articles that are linked to help you get started. You can go back through the archives to view previous “What’s New” articles for each product. Click Here to find those articles.