Part 2: Getting the most out of your Microsoft Dynamics Partner’s Helpdesk: Fix the cause before the symptoms

It’s no exaggeration to say that the most valuable thing a lot of companies have is their master and transactional data. One rogue process can destroy that value very quickly and even cause doubt about your data integrity which has an amazing impact.

Therefore, it’s not good enough to simply put the data right – you need to make sure the cause is understood and corrected/prevented.

In fact, I maintain that the priority is finding and fixing the cause. If that delays this transaction, then so be it.  Your customer will not be impressed if the same issue happens again so it’s better to take longer now understanding and solving the root cause than it is doing a quick fix.

Consistently Reproduce the Issue

The hardest ones to solve are always the ones where you know the result is wrong but you’re not sure how it got there. If it only happens infrequently, it doesn’t mean it not serious, but it does make it harder to spot the pattern of process that resulted in the failure.

The more experienced the helpdesk operator the more chance they might have seen something similar before but the more precise information you give them the better chance they have. Otherwise you have to apply age old fault finding skills of narrowing down the possibilities but that takes time and consistency from both user and helper.

Remember until the problem can be reproduced at will it will not be able to be solved. Helping your helpdesk to do that will make your life easier as well.

One thing is for certain, the old saying ‘if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got’ applies here. Issues do not go away on their own, they might go quiet for a while because some data or process is slightly different but chances are if not fully understood it will return.

No magic wands

Much as we would all like to just make every issue disappear that doesn’t happen. Your helpdesk is trying to help you get to a result as soon as possible because they will have other calls to work on after yours. All parties should remain calm and communicate clearly, that the fastest way to get the problem fully understood and that means it on the way to resolution.


This post is part of a 2-part series. A link to all the posts in this series are below;