Tech Support vs. Consulting

We often get questions about the difference between Technical Support and Consulting. People wonder, "Where's the line?" or "How do I know when I've crossed it?" Given that Technical Support is covered by your CCP membership and Consulting is billed by the hour, these are important questions!

  • Technical Support helps you to understand why the software is doing what it's doing or reproduce any error condition you may encounter so we can get it on our fix list.
  • Consulting covers anything else, like creating reports, anything to do with custom scripts, helping you learn how to use the software (i.e training), or helping you figure out how to best utilize the software in your business, among many other things.

That said, here are our official definitions and policies:

What is Technical Support?

Technical Support covers:

  • Questions about how the software operates
  • Issues with standard (non-scripted) features
  • Reporting and/or reproducing bugs

Technical support is available on a first come, first served basis and you can expect to receive a response within one business day. You can email, fax or call with your question and we'll put it in the queue for response. Whenever possible, we try to respond in less than a day.

Examples of Technical Support Questions

  • How can I change my printed Purchase Order font and logo?
  • How do I make it stop copying the order quantity to the ship column on sales orders?
  • I got an error during posting. What should I do?
  • My username or password doesn't work on the AcctVantage Knowledge Base web site. Can you fix it?

What is Consulting?

Consulting is any service that's not Technical Support. Common consulting activities include:

  • Writing reports or scripts.
  • Helping you figure out how to best use the software given how your business operates.
  • Changing the priority of a Class II bug (see About Bug Reporting.)
  • Special features/programming.
  • Data and/or import file manipulation.
  • Anything that requires setting an appointment to do.
  • Installing an update or upgrade for you.
  • Step-by-step review of normal data entry.
  • Doing data file maintenance for you.

Examples of Consulting Questions

Can you help me figure out how to manage my returns using credit memos?

  • Talking about how credit memos work is technical support, but helping you design a process that uses our credit memo feature as part of it is consulting.

I'm new to AcctVantage, can you teach me how to do Payables?

  • Talking about an issue with AP is technical support, but training is consulting.

Do you have a feature that...?

  • Information about what the software can do is technical support.

I need a feature that does...

  • Feature creation, however, is always consulting.

My import failed, can you look at my import files and fix what ever is is wrong with them?

  • Talking about how an import file should be formatted or what fields can be imported is technical support, but modifying your import file for you is consulting.

I'm having trouble installing this upgrade.

  • Providing the documentation that tells you how to install the upgrade and helping you understand what that documentation is saying is technical support, but connecting to your site to install the software is consulting.