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Network Services Catalog of Services: Tech Support

Tech Support will receive the user's call and record the necessary information on an automated problem management system for tracking problems. If an immediate solution is not identifiable, Tech Support  will forward the report to the appropriate vendor or support personnel for resolution. Vendors or support personnel acting on a problem report or inquiry will resolve the user's problem and inform Tech Support  of the problem's resolution. Tech Support personnel will then update the automated problem management system and inform the user of the problem's disposition. The user will verify that the problem has been resolved. Tech Support  will then close out the problem report.

Trouble Reporting
Tech Support operates 24 hours, 7 days a week, including holidays. Because of the cost involved in dispatching vendors after business hours, on weekends and on holidays, OTS Network Services requests that non-emergency repair problems be held until regular business hours.

OTS/NS Tech Support  will take trouble reports between 7:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. From 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. Monday through Friday, and on weekends and holidays, OTS/NS personnel will be on call to assist critical care facilities with emergency telecommunications problems. To access Tech Support  both during and after business hours users should dial 225 342-7777.

A call to Tech Support  may warrant charges for the repairs to be made. Tech Support will gain approval from the reporting agency before the work is done. If there is an emergency call placed to Tech Support before or after hours and there is no timely response from OTS/NS, the appropriate dial tone or equipment vendor should be notified of the trouble. As soon as possible thereafter, OTS/NS should be contacted so that the information can be documented for proper record keeping and work expedited as needed. If the agency is unsure of the appropriate dial tone or equipment vendor for their site, they should contact OTS/NS Tech Support during normal business hours for this information and make note of it so that after hours personnel will have access to the information.

Agencies have the responsibility of troubleshooting before calling Tech Support. Doing this may result in faster problem resolution and lower/no cost being incurred by the agency and will aid the Tech Support analyst  in making the proper vendor assignment.

Included in the following categories are suggestions and information that can be used in troubleshooting.

Telephone Sets--Many of the problems that are reported to Tech Support  relate to the telephone or telephone handset. OTS/NS suggests that the agency purchase a single line set or sets to switch out for test purposes. Before reporting a problem, the agency should check the following:

  • Is the handset plugged in?
  • Is the handset cord frayed or damaged? (Bad handsets can cause low volume, distorted transmission, etc.)
  • Is the telephone plugged into both modular jacks (phone and wall)?
  • Is the telephone call-forwarded?
  • If the phone has an A/C transformer, is it plugged into an A/C receptacle and does the receptacle work?
  • Is the volume turned up?
    Replace the handset with a known working handset or test equipment. Does the problem still exist?
  • Unplug the line cord from the wall jack. Replace the set and cord with equipment that is operational. Does the problem still exist?

If the problem is with defective single line sets, the agency should not call OTS/NS Tech Support. OTS/NS will not dispatch vendors to handle single line sets. When single line sets need replacement, the agency should follow internal procedure for purchasing from state contract. Swapping out single line sets is usually an effective way of determining whether the problem is in the set or the line. If the problem still cannot be determined, it should be reported to OTS/NS Tech Support.

Centrex Environment--Centrex service, also known as ESSX, is a dial tone service offered by AT&T Southeast. In a Centrex environment individual telephone lines are linked directly from the service premise to the AT&T Southeast Central Office. All of the agency's troubleshooting will be performed on the user end of the line. The user should first check the telephone set plugged into the line(s) in question. If the problem is in the line, the user should report the problem to OTS/NS Tech Support. OTS/NS  will forward the report to AT&T Southeast or the appropriate independent telephone company.

PBX Environment--PBX or Private Branch Exchange is a telephone system that allows for communication between stations on the system without connecting those calls to public lines. The PBX also allows for direct incoming calls from public lines and outgoing calls to public lines.

An attempt should be made to determine if the problem is with the set using the procedure described above. If the set is a single line set and it can be determined to be a set problem, the agency should replace the set rather than call OTS/NS.

When reporting PBX troubles, provide Tech Support with the type of trouble, the extension, the type of set used at the extension in trouble, location of the troubled extension, and the access hours. OTS/NS will dispatch the PBX equipment vendor if the trouble is behind the PBX switch, meaning the area from the point of demarcation to any one station.

Key Telephone System Environment--A Key Telephone System is composed of an arrangement of telephones, wiring, and necessary equipment which provides a means of answering one or more lines at one or more stations.

Users may also have the ability to transfer calls from one station to another station. Key Systems may include call directors and mounted modules, ten line key units, sets with externally mounted keys, or sets with no associated key equipment when such sets are part of a key telephone assembly. The user must identify certain circumstances before calling Tech Support. If reporting troubles such as no dial tone or noise, the user must determine if the problem is occurring in more than one set. If the problem is common to all sets, the trouble is usually a line problem and should be reported to the Tech Support  so that it can be forwarded to AT&T Southeast or the appropriate telephone company. If the problem is occurring on only one set, the user should call OTS/NS so that the problem can be reported to the equipment vendor. Obvious physical troubles such as lights out and frayed cords should be reported to OTS/NS as equipment problems.

Call Processing Problems-- Sometimes troubles occur when the user is trying to make a telephone call. These are referred to as call processing troubles. When reporting this type of trouble to OTS/NS, the user should be prepared to provide the Tech Support analyst with details of how the call was placed.

Feature malfunctions should also be examined before calling Tech Support. The following are suggestions which will be used in investigating feature malfunctions:

  • The user should determine if the proper method and/or code for activating the feature are being used.
  • The user should research whether or not the troubled line has been assigned the feature in question. Final verification on this matter can be provided by OTS/NS Customer Service.
  • The user should swap out telephone sets to determine if the trouble is in the equipment.
  • If the feature is the result of recent service order activity, it is possible that the feature has not been activated or is in queue to be activated. The user or TC should contact the OTS/NS service representative who worked the order to determine if this is the cause of the trouble.
  • If the above guidelines have been followed and the trouble still exists, the user is advised to report the problem to OTS/NS Tech Support.

Circuit Problems--When reporting circuit problems to OTS/NS Tech Support, the person reporting the trouble should describe in as much detail as possible the problem being experienced. It is important to also provide the OTS/NS Tech Support analyst with the name and telephone number of a contact person at the trouble site and access hours at that site. The user reporting the trouble from the master or host site should also provide their name and telephone number. OTS/NS will provide status information to the person who reported the trouble. Circuit troubles have a five-hour commitment time for service and are tracked by OTS/NS every two hours.

Network Services Problems (Data Dial Tone, VPN, Capitol Park wireless, Internet, MPLS Intrastate Transport)--Agency end users should contact their agency's help desk or technical support before calling OTS/NS. An agency's technical support staff can determine if a problem is related to network access or is a local computer issue. If it is determined by agency technical support that the problem is outside an agency's area of responsibility, the agency technical staff should contact OTS/NS. The trouble ticket will be forwarded to OTS/NS LANET for further trouble-shooting and resolution. The caller should indicate the severity of the problem. Accurately defining the seriousness of the problem will allow OTS/NS to determine the appropriate allocation of resources.

Voice Messaging Problems--When experiencing voice messaging problems, the user should follow these troubleshooting steps before calling Tech Support:

  • If the user has a single line set, he should make sure the tone/pulse switch is set to "Tone." The voice messaging system does not recognize pulse signals.
  • The user should make sure the message notification parameter is on. If it is not on, the user will not be notified of new messages via stutter dial tone or message light.
  • If the user has outcall notification to a pager, he should make sure the notification schedule is activated properly. If not, the user will not be alerted via pager of new messages.
  • If the stutter dial tone or message light is on but there are no messages, then the user should leave himself a new message. Then, he should go back and delete it. Usually, this will resolve the problem.
  • When the user is retrieving and deleting voice messages and gets to a message the system won't allow him to delete, he should leave himself a new message and try deleting it. This will usually resolve the problem.

If these steps do not solve the problem, the user should report the problem to the Tech Support. The following information will be needed:

  • Area code and telephone number in trouble
  • Name and telephone number of person reporting trouble
  • Name of contact person and telephone number at the trouble site
  • Name of agency, the physical address, and office hours of the trouble site
  • Detailed description of trouble (e.g. stutter dial tone not working)

All Other Problems-- For any telecommunications problems not specified above, the user should call Tech Support and explain the problem in as much detail as possible. The Tech Support analyst will either generate a trouble ticket or direct the caller to someone who can help.

Billing Rates
There is no charge for calling Tech Support. However, there may be a charge for dispatching a vendor to resolve the reported problem.

Forms--OTM-15 Help Desk Information Form is designed to assist the user in gathering the necessary information before reporting problems to Tech Support. Do not submit the form to OTS/NS.

Contacts
Section Tech Support
Phone 225 342-7777
E-mail General: techsupport@la.gov
Escalation: debbie.griffith@la.gov
                  tracie.cole@la.gov