Your thoughts on the new "need help" functionality

Brass Contributor

I am keen to know what others here think of the new 'need help' support experience that Microsoft introduced a few months back.


  • We keep receiving duplicate emails (main email of MSFT account + organisation's email).
  • We cannot add notes via the web browser -- we can only update case via email.
  • We cannot keep track of previous incidents via the web browser.
  • We can only open one incident at the time.
  • There is no way to close an incident if we resolved it - must email ask MSFT to close it.

Am I the only one that thinks that this new experience is 'subpar'? Not being able to open more than once incident at once? Seriously?! I have tried time and again to raise this issue with Microsoft -- and I got everything from being ignored to complete and utter disdain. I fail to understand for the life of me on how this new experience has been released as is.


I am sure that whoever designed this thinks they completely revolutionalised service management (either that or Micrrosoft is intentionally trying to let its customers down) -- but this new experience represents everything that is wrong with IT Service Management . It is a slap in the face of everything ITIL and ISO 20000 stands for. In fact, the only thing missing from it is clippo asking "it seems to me that you want to open a support request".


5 Replies

Hi Pedro, this has been discussed already on the forums, with some replies from the relevant folks at MS as well. Here's a link to the thread:


And a more recent one:


I've forwarded your feedback as well.

Hi Vasil,


Thank you for your reply. I had a look at what has been discussed and, I am sorry to say, I am left with an even worse impression from Microsoft than what I had before. Regretably, while this has been discussed before it has not been resolved, and I feel this is still a pressing point that needs to be discussed over and over until Microsoft get it. So, since you are forwarding our comments to Microsoft:


After reading some of the comments by Microsoft representatives and MVPs in the other similar posts, I am now pretty much convinced that this new support portal is a disingenuous attempt by Microsoft to reduce their costs in detriment to the quality of service provided by its customers.


The fact that Azure Portal has a perfectly fine support experience, is evidence to me that Microsoft has the means to provide whas has been requested. In fact. O365 had perfectly fine support experience until this new 'need help' has been deployed.


And I cannot accept the argument that Azure and O365 are two different departments for two reasons: a) It is ONE Microsoft. One cannot use the 'one Microsoft' argument only when it is favourable to Microsoft; and b) As previously mentioned, the O365 portal had a perfectly fine support funcionality before.


Also the argument that Microsoft is trying to avoid people abusing the system is pretty much ludicrous. Again I point to the Azure Portal experience. There are different support levels that can be purchased that allows for different severity levels. 


Finally, while Microsoft justifies that working with one engineer is better because this one engineer (or concierge) "have breadth of knowledge in all services" is wishfull thinking to say the least. My experience has proven otherwise. They seem more like 1st level support reps who are often forwarding our queries to the more capable engineers in the background. The resulting experience, at least for me, has been: a) those concierges failing to understand some fundamental technical aspects of the issue at hand; b) confusing issues; c) providing incorrect or insuficient resolutions; and d) taking a significant amount of time to come back with a solution. In fact I was left in the dark for DAYS with an Exchange Online issue because the engineer was 'out of the office' and I wasn't informed.


Microsoft might try to spin this new support experience in a positive light -- but I can see right through it for what it really is. I can see you are an MVP and this might not be what you would like to hear/read -- but as a paying customer I am quite angry with the sub-par level of service being provided.

Hey, don't get me wrong, I've given them a lot of feedback on this and I constantly bug them whenever I see complaint like yours on the different communities. MVPs are not MS employees, we are allowed to talk bad things :) Which also means that we are in no better position to change things that you are.


Having worked as support engineer, I've seen both sides of the coin and I can understand why Microsoft is trying to make some of these changes. I dont necessarily agree with all of them, but again there's not much we can do apart from providing our feedback (and making sure feedback like yours is also heard). Keep in mind that majority of support agents are from different vendors, which usually have different priorities than Microsoft (cost as you mentioned). But that's just the reality of the world we live in...

I've worked as support engineer myself, and I've since then gained extensive experience in ITIL and ISO 20000. And based on that experience, in contrast with what I have experienced with the new portal and what I have read here from both ends -- I can say that I am pretty much sure that Microsoft is being disingenuous.


I don't see eye to eye with on the argument that they have their reasons. Again: This is not an issue with Azure -- which is way more complex than Office 365. I find Microsoft's arguments in favour of this new portal to be intelectually dishonest pure and simple.



It seems that JUST today Microsoft added the following features in the portal, at least for me:

  • The ability to update an incident with notes via the portal (not only via email).
  • The ability to close an incident via the portal.

I am sure that this is just a fantastic concidence. But what a lovely coincidence it is. Now, let's do the right thing and let us open more than once incident at once, shall we?