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Cadlink to charge for telephone support!

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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 1:46 pm

Cadlink to charge for telephone support!

This from their web site:

Assured Production Program Features:
For only £195.00* per year, per licensed CADlink software product, you will enjoy all the following benefits:

• Unlimited technical assistance for one year after enrollement.
• Support for SignLab/EngraveLab/ProfileLab 6.1and 7 products.
• Support for PhotoScript 7, 8 and Thermal printing products.
• Assistance hours: Monday through Friday, 09.00 to 17.00 (G.M.T.).
• Free replacement of damaged program CD's (a £25.00 value).
• One-time free product update (within same version) (a £25.00 value).

* All prices quoted exclude VAT enrolment amount based on 1 licensed CADlink product. Support for each additional license costs £50.00.

* All prices quoted exclude

Single-incident Support:
For £35.00 you may talk to a CIS technician to resolve a single technical support problem.

How to enroll:
Note: If you purchase or upgraded a CADlink software product as part of a production system from CIS, then you are already a member! Your membership will expire 1 year from the date of purchase, however, you will be notified 30 days before the 1 year is up and given the opportunity to renew your support.

If you are currently not a member, and wish to obtain Tech Support, please choose one of the following enrolment options to sign up now for the CADlink Assured Production Program:

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so after giving them a couple of grand they want MORE money from us to help them sort out the bugs in their software (:) (:) now where did I put the address of that Warez site :evil:
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 2:28 pm

SCANDALOUS!

I rang Roland the other day, over a Plotter error, I havent even got a warranty and they were superb!

I half expected them to ask for my warranty agreement number or something but they didnt!
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 4:34 pm

For those wanting to ask that one off question it is going to be very, very expensive. I wonder if the dealers are going to be abliged to follow, so will the first port of call be the dealer or Cadlink and will the dealers be privvy to the technical behind the scenes stuff that Cadlink obvious are. I suppose its ok for large sign firms but for "Freds in Sheds" like me , sorry too expensive if they need to recoup money for technical stuff I would tolerate 50p a minute calls. This may well separate the good dealers from the rest, this assumes that Cadlink don't go the whole hog and do away with dealers altogether. Brian any views you can share with us?
Regards
Alan
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 4:58 pm

I know Cadlink have been getting an ever growing number of calls from end users for technical support. The 1st point of contact for support has always been with the supplying dealer. Some I guess neglect this responsibilty. Personally I don't agree with it & think that it will upset a lot of customers. We will still support the software that we sell ourselves. You may be right in that it is aimed at larger firms.

It seemed to me it may be a beginning to Cadlink going down the direct selling route, we have been assured this is not their intention so I guess we will have to wait & see.

I know Cadlink will aslo be running training courses which I guess is a little easier to justify charging for.

It will be interseting to see what everone else thinks......
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 6:39 pm

It just sounds like another money earner :-? As Alan has said, a premium rate number would've been a better option as even at 50p a minute, a 20 minute call to solve a quick problem/question would cost a tenner. A tad cheaper than the £195 a year option :-?

Cheers, Dewi
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 6:59 pm

Take this for example, you have your Signlab for 1 year plus, been using it with no problems, you buy a new computer with new operating system, install ok but will not cut. In theory to get it going is (assuming dealer can't help) is £195.00 at worst or £35.00 for that one off call. We can only hope they:-
1. drop this stupid idea
2. change to something fairer (50p a minute calls just about tolerable)
3. at least make sure that the FAQ page on website is up to date
4. ensure dealers are well informed and at least give them full and complete support.
Also include on website a "known issue" page, I have spent ages with software (not only sign software) trying to learn a new function to get it to work the way I expect - give up and ring/email technical support only to find it is a known issue and will be either fixed with the next patch or maybe given a work around (ok providing you don't pay £35.00 for it)
I'm interested in other views, Rob perhaps an FAQ set of pages here
Alan
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 7:30 pm

Makes UKSIGNBOARDS even better value! :wink:
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 10:32 pm

i was about to launch a signlab forum with step by step demos, help.. anything to make it happen & still may. a certain mr winterar*e loved my idea so much he stole it and tried the same on the cox website.. he even went to the mags announcing his brain wave..

shame it failed.. :( :lol:
Last edited by Robert Lambie on Tue May 04, 2004 8:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:11 pm

I disagree that they should charge for the support when the software is so expensive already. Even if it is great software!
But on the flip side, what about those folk that don’t just get it? I mean those that always have bother. There is only so much time Cadlink can dedicate to them.
I think a forum like you suggested would be a very good idea Robert. This site is the best, I mean that. I think it would be in Cadlink and possibly Flexisign’s best interest to support a forum on this site. I guess if you tried then you tried though. :roll:
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Post Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:19 pm

They are offering training sessions for "folks that don't get it" which is fair enough. It would also be good for companies with new staff that they don't have time to train I guess?
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Post Fri Apr 30, 2004 1:10 am

i agree brian.. i think the training classes would be pretty good actualy.
depending on size i suppose...

kev, i didnt approach signlab or anything like that. it was something i was considering & had thought about for some time i mentioned by PM to tony and it started a flurry of emails back and forward, then he said he would reply in a couple of weeks with the go ahead but had to go away for now on business or somthing like that.. . next thing i open a magazine and he had went right ahead saying it was his idea and now doing it with cox..

anyway, not to worry. :wink:
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Post Fri Apr 30, 2004 8:40 am

Corel have a news group where people post specific questions which are generally answered by other users, apparently Corel do monitor this and chip in with some of the more technical stuff but generally the "how do I" stuff gets answered by users thus assisting the novices and people who struggle and because it is always there it is a good resource for everybody. I would have thought this would be a good cost effective way for Cadlink (or anybody) to support their product without alienating their customers.
Software companies at a minimum should ensure their help files and FAQ web pages are up to date and that if their is "known issues" let the users know, I think we are realistic to know that software cannot be perfect and is always a "job in progress". It doesn't matter how much beta testing you do until it gets out there, being used by real people in real sign shops, producing real signs do the bugs become apparent. I like Signlab always have I suspect always will but don't make me pay to help you iron out flaws in your software. Perhaps if we pay for support we will get paid for reporting bugs and making user suggestions to them.
Charge for training - not for support.
Sorry if I ramble.
Alan
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Post Fri Apr 30, 2004 9:23 am

kev hoy graphics wrote: what about those folk that don’t just get it? I mean those that always have bother. :roll:

Kev - I have been using signlab for over 10 years. I use photoshop. Illustrator. Corel Draw. Autocad. I have been working with computers and design software for around 20 years. Signlab e6 is filled with annoying bugs and errors - no matter whether you "get it" or not - Every time the rep from COX's comes into our office he avoids me like I have mad cow's desease- I have shown him countless faults and bugs - all of which he is unable to explain. We have a team of 5 designers working here - all on Signlab - since we upgraded, (about 15 months ago), I still receive a constant barrage of complaints from them - "it won't do this" - "why does it do that" etc etc. These are all very experienced sign makers I'm talking about. Take a look at the tutorial CD and watch the guy on that - struggling - it would be hilarious if it wasn't for the extortionate amount of money they have taken from us.
Of course the software works - of course you can get used to it's little foibles and work around them - we would have gone bust if you couldn't but the point is, they have cocked up big style and won't admit it - and now they want us to pay for the privilege of being ripped off even more (not that I would ever phone them).
All I can say is - any of you out there using signlab 5 (or earlier) - stick with it - you will only end up throwing a brick through your VDU.
Col

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