Top 5 excuses you hear from service providers on poor network performance

We've all been there: The corporate network is performing incredibly slow, across the board, so you call your service provider for help. Some service providers are helpful and offer up assistance, but all too often the provider comes back with a list of excuses why this poor network performance isn't necessarily their fault.

This is one of the most frustrating things an internal network administrator can deal with, especially when everything is configured properly on the business' side. These excuses do nothing more than offload blame, pushing it away from the service provider, and, on occasion, shifting it toward the customer.

"We've heard some downright crazy excuses about poor network performance in the past."

We've heard some downright crazy excuses about poor network performance in the past, but there are some that stand out among the rest. Taking a page out of David Letterman's book, here are the top five excuses poor service providers have given for why their networks are not performing at their best:

5) It's not the network, it's the application
This is a real stinker of an excuse, as it completely absolves the service provider of having anything to do with the problem. Here, the provider will tell you that it's not the network itself that is the issue, but instead, the application you are trying to use. While IBM noted that there are a number of issues that can cause slow application performance – including operating system problems, overall design of the software and third-party app interference – this is often not the case. Poor network performance won't just affect one application, but all the applications running on the network. So, if your staff members are seeing less-than-satisfactory performance of multiple applications, bring this to the service provider's attention and don't let it get away with the "it's not the network" excuse.

4) You're not waiting long enough
Service providers will insist that users are simply being impatient and aren't waiting long enough to give the network its fair shake. However, numerous sources have pointed out that when the number of seconds creeps into the double digits, it's been too long. For instance, KISSmetrics found that 16 percent of users will only wait one to five seconds for a page to load, and another 30 percent won't wait longer than 10 seconds.

If your network isn't performing up to your standards, it could be time for a change. With a more responsive WAN in place, your network could see improvements in reliability, quality and capacity across the board. With a partner like Talari at your side, each data packet is treated intelligently, ensuring that it takes the best network path to provide the best performance. Click here to schedule a demo or talk to a Talari representative.

3) Unfamiliar activity is putting the network out of whack
This is another common excuse heard from service providers, and another way for them to give you an answer without really giving you an answer. Think about it: Unfamiliar activity could refer to any number of tasks taking place on the network, from shadow IT practices to an intruder within the system. While we'll address the latter in just a bit, the takeaway here is that service providers should be able to give you specific feedback. Don't allow them to give you non-answers about your network performance like this sorry excuse for an excuse.

Service providers should be able to give you specific feedback about your network performance.Service providers should be able to give you specific feedback about your network performance.

2) Malicious activity could be slowing you down
While this is one of the more serious of the bunch, it's another way for service providers to shift the blame away from themselves. Typically, when this excuse surfaces, the service provider will insist that users on the business' side weren't practicing their due diligence and potentially exposed the network to an external threat. In this case, it's better to be safe than sorry, and have the IT team verify that this is not the issue. All firewalls, antivirus, anti-malware, encryption and other protection measures should be examined to ensure they are fully active and are operating as they should. If nothing appears out of the ordinary on the company's side, it's time to urge the service provider to check again for any problems that may be affecting network performance.

1) There's a problem with your equipment
This one tops the list of bad excuses when it comes to poor network performance. This is your basic catch-all excuse that many service providers use when they're simply not sure what the cause of the issue is and they try to put it back on you. Instead of researching the true cause, they'll just say "it must be your equipment," opening the discussion to a whole range of problems that you need to research. If you tell them that your on-premise equipment is of the highest caliber and appears to be working normally, they'll still insist that you double-check. This particular excuse may take some serious interrogating and reasoning to avoid, but it's all too often a go-to excuse for service providers when they can't tell you what the real problem is.

Businesses must be able to hold their service providers accountable for poor network performance. However, decision-makers must have the knowledge and details to support their assertions. With an industry-leading partner like Talari, this information is at your fingertips. Talari gathers data about the capacity, performance and quality of every circuit and makes it available for you to show your service provider.

Although in some instances there is nothing that can be done about service providers' performance, you and your mission-critical applications shouldn't be beholden to less-than-satisfactory network quality. With a partner like Talari at your side, alternative paths are available, ensuring that even if your service provider is experiencing issues or an outage, Talari can automatically reroute critical network traffic. Click here to schedule a demo or talk to a Talari representative. 

Categories: Intelligent WAN