Marginal client question....

Hi, all. We have a potential client that may have a poor uplink, but we should be able to deliver better than the 22k they are getting with dialup right now. The client understands the issue, and is willing to pay our install fee, which they recognize they may lose if the install is not acceptable when we get it in.

My question is this: With the Canopy 900MHz gear, will a really marginal client cause problems for the other clients. We have not seen a problem like that yet, but I don’t want to install, have the client happy with what I consider a crappy link, and then have to yank it anyway because they are killing everyone else on the AP.

So… Comments, anyone?

Thanks!

Not really.

However it’s bad business to put a customer on that you know ahead of time will be unhappy. While you have made it clear in advance, and talked about the fact that it will not be a good link, they somehow forget that conversation and weeks later are calling to “See if there is anything you can do”. It will escalate from there.

What are you going to use for an antenna? I would suggest an 18dB yagi to really narrow the beam.

As long as we won’t affect the rest of the network everything should be okay. We have an 18dBi yagi in the back of the van lined up for this person. We’re also very clear about the situation with the client. We’re waiving the termination fee, and if the client is not happy, we just go get the equipment and keep the install fee. Everything is carefully spelled out, and we expect one of three possible outcomes:

1. It actually works well with the big gun up there.

2. It works better than dialup so the client is happy.

3. It doesn’t work and we go back and get our gear.

I appreciate the concern, though Jerry.

Jerry Richardson wrote:
However it's bad business to put a customer on that you know ahead of time will be unhappy. While you have made it clear in advance, and talked about the fact that it will not be a good link, they somehow forget that conversation and weeks later are calling to "See if there is anything you can do". It will escalate from there.


Blurghhh! I had to learn that lesson the hard way.

Same situation:
Customer: Hey, can I get your wireless?
Me: (after investigating) not really. I am getting a signal at your location, but I can't guarentee it will be solid.
Customer: That's okay, anything is better then dial-up.
Me: I really don't think this is a good idea, it is not going to be stable
Customer: (Getting pushy) I don't care! I'm a paying customer and I want the service!
Me: Uuhhh, I guess. But don't come crying to me if it does not work well.
Customer: Shure, whatever. Get the installers over here already.

<2 months go by>

Customer: This radio thing works great when it works, but that's only 30% of the time. Can't you fix that?
Me: Uhhh, remember what I said: "its not going to work well." No, there's nothing I can do.
Customer: But I'm a paying customer and I expect to pay for a sevice that works.
Me: But, but, I said before. . .

You get the idea.

Don't do this, you'll regret it.

Yes, I know what I may be getting myself into here, but this is an old friend of my partner’s and we’re going to have them sign a special clause to the agreement that says if they are not satisfied, we’ll gladly pull the radio and be done with it.

I appreciate the cautions, but I’m the brains, my partner’s the money. He’s got the bigger lever. I’m just working to cover the unhappy client eventuality as best I can.

Thanks, guys!

<cue innocent fool whistling a happy tune in the dark as he wanders into a brick wall>

What are you getting for a link test. I’ve seen radios stay registered with 10 percent uplink. At that rate the customer will generate 10 times the uplink traffic that a 90 percent customer would generate to upload a large file. The same would apply for his downloads, so if you are near saturation on that AP factor in the extra traffic based on a link test from his location.

Thanks, George. Link test was about 98/37 in 2x with our 10dB flat panel we use for surveys. We’re putting an 18dBi Yagi up there, and the AP has only 40 clients currently. I think we’ll be okay. I’m beginning to wonder if the thresholds we have chosen for determining what constitutes a good link are more strict than the average. SO…

I’m starting a new thread with that question…

What are your standards for an acceptable link?

We have a couple of customers that have “unacceptable links” to us but they wanted them put in anyway. We do not monitor those nodes. We do however make them sign a “waiver” form stating they know the link is not 100% reliable and they take that chance. That way when they do call 2 months later we have it on file that they knew about it and they cant fight it.

Yep, that’s essentially what we’re going to do. We’re talking about establishing objective parameters for surveys that would result in one of three classifications:

1. Good survey, schedule install.

2. No go – marginal. This is where we would tell the client that although we were able to receive some signal at the desired location, we did not have good enough conditions to result in reliable service. In this case, if the client persisted, they would be offered the option of signing a “Quality of service waiver” or whatever we’re going to call it.

3. No go – hard. Dead air.

Number two will be only a very select few cases in the first place, and the waiver option would only be offered in the case of a very persistent client.