OTM Help Desk
The Help Desk 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, the Help Desk 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 the Help Desk of the problem's resolution. Help Desk 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. The Help Desk will then close out the problem report.
The Help Desk 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, OTM requests that non-emergency repair problems be held until regular business hours.
The OTM Help Desk 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, OTM personnel will be on call to assist critical care facilities with emergency telecommunications problems. To access the OTM Help Desk both during and after business hours users should dial 225-342-7777.
A call to the Help Desk may warrant charges for the repairs to be made. The Help Desk will gain approval from the reporting agency before the work is done. If there is an emergency call placed to the Help Desk before or after hours and there is no timely response from OTM, the appropriate dial tone or equipment vendor should be notified of the trouble. As soon as possible thereafter, OTM 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 the OTM Help Desk during normal business hours for this information and make note of it so that after hours personnel will have access to the information.
If a problem is not resolved in a timely manner during normal business hours, the following OTM personnel may be contacted in the order below:
Deloris Leavell,Support Services Manager 225-342-7751
Debbie Griffith, Manager 2 of Support Services 225-342-2500
J.D. Liford, Assistant Director for Support Services 225-342-7744
Agencies have the responsibility of troubleshooting before calling the OTM Help Desk. Doing this may result in faster problem resolution and lower/no cost being incurred by the agency and will aid the Help Desk Operator 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 the Help Desk relate to the telephone or telephone handset. OTM 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 the OTM Help Desk. The OTM Help Desk 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 the Help Desk.
Centrex Environment--Centrex service, also known as ESSX, is a dial tone service offered by BellSouth. In a Centrex environment individual telephone lines are linked directly from the service premise to the BellSouth 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 the OTM Help Desk. OTM will forward the report to BellSouth 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 the OTM Help Desk.
When reporting PBX troubles, provide the Help Desk 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. OTM 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 the Help Desk. 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 Help Desk so that it can be forwarded to BellSouth or the appropriate telephone company. If the problem is occurring on only one set, the user should call OTM 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 the Help Desk 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 the Help Desk, the user should be prepared to provide the Help Desk operator with details of how the call was placed.
Feature malfunctions should also be examined before calling the Help Desk. 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 the OTM Customer Service Section.
- 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 OTM 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 the OTM Help Desk.
Circuit Problems--When reporting circuit problems to the OTM Help Desk, the person reporting the trouble should describe in as much detail as possible the problem being experienced. It is important to also provide the OTM Operator 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. OTM 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 OTM 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 OTM. 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 OTM. The trouble ticket will be forwarded to OTM Enhanced Network Services for further trouble-shooting and resolution. The caller should indicate the severity of the problem. Accurately defining the seriousness of the problem will allow OTM to determine the appropriate allocation of resources.
Voice Messaging Problems--When experiencing voice messaging problems, the user should follow these troubleshooting steps before calling the Help Desk:
- 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 Help Desk. 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 the Help Desk and explain the problem in as much detail as possible. The Help Desk representative will either generate a trouble ticket or direct the caller to someone who can help.
Forms--OTM-15 Help Desk Information Form is designed to assist the user in gathering the necessary information before reporting problems to the Help Desk. Do not submit the form to OTM.