What compensation is there when Atlassian fail to respond to Support queries within the SLA target t

We are increasingly finding that Atlassian are slow to respond to our support queries.  Apparently the solution is to change the response time for critical issues from 1 hour response to 1 business day!! (see https://confluence.atlassian.com/support/atlassian-support-offerings-193299636.html)

Our business depends on our Atlassian Cloud being operational, there are massive cost implications for us when it isn't.  We pay a lot for the service and I would like to see some real tangible compensation when SLA's are missed - otherwise they are meaningless.

2 answers

0 vote

Hi Hilary,

I work at Atlassian and am the product manager for support. I help define our offerings and I posted the banner announcement on the support offerings page you linked. I'll try to give you an honest response and open a conversation, and respond in case others have the same concern.

Let's start here:

I would like to see some real tangible compensation when SLA's are missed

I should start by acknowledging this isn't an unfamiliar concept. SLA's in the support industry are generally speaking exactly what you describe: legal agreements which, when violated, have some level of compensatory mechanism. At Atlassian, our approach is the opposite of signing legal agreements. We want to strip away as much of that as possible in the purchase process: no sales reps, demo the software on your own, sign up and off you go. We won't change that; we're not going a legal agreement route. 

This part:

- otherwise they are meaningless.

and:

We are increasingly finding that Atlassian are slow to respond to our support queries. 

It's true, as you've noticed, that we have been missing our IRT (Initial Response Time) targets recently. You're also right, we do not want to make these meaningless. This is exactly why we're shifting our offerings to get the right service level commitments and hit them every time. If we're not going to hit a target, we should be honest about it. That doesn't mean we have a legal agreement, but it does mean we reliably do what we say we're going to do.

As the comment also indicates, we're going to announce support offerings that will have faster response times available for purchase. We will provide those with a high level of consistency.  For customers whose business doesn't depend on fast response times from support (there are many, by the way, who fall into this category), we have a more accurate and honest offering. For those that do, we will be introducing service levels and offerings that match your business need and for which you can count on it being consistent.

Lastly, although you don't ask about this, I think it warrants pointing out: we focus a lot on making sure the service is reliable and scalable independent of our support times. This is "table stakes" for what you'd want in a cloud service. We don't really reflect that in our support offerings. You can read more about what we do in some of our blogs like how our site reliability engineers do incident management and Love DevOps? Wait until you meet SRE.

Thanks for posting this. Let me know if you'd like to talk it through. I can reach out to you over email and/or connect you with one of our support managers.

0 vote

Just an update - I've pulled the banner from the Support Offerings page. I want a little more time to get the messaging right, and I think it warrants a fuller explanation of what we're offering than we can do in a banner. 

We'll repost with more detail in the coming weeks, with enough lead time.

I'm still happy to talk if you'd like.

That's excellent news about pulling the banner and putting back the changes.  Given it was only a couple of days away and there was no information available about alternative packages that are practical.  Customers need time to make decisions about such things and get the necessary approval from budget holders.  So changes to Support need to be well publicised and in good time.

Support for the Cloud service is rather different to support for the server version - it is not just the application but the platform you are supporting as well.  We have just had an incident where our rapid boards were not working for days and we were dependent on Atlassian to sort it out - they needed to restart the instance which we can't do.  Without the rapid boards our teams (who only know how to work with those and not traditional Jira) were stuck.  Major client meetings had to be postponed or run using a spreadsheet.

I would like to see any new support offering being both affordable and accountable as well as responsive.  This is from a background of us already reeling from an 82% cost increase for your service last month.

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