Here are some things this vendor did that no vendor should do:
- Talk over the customer when they try to ask questions: The conference call had two people from the vendor company on it. The sales person I originally talked to, and a technical sales person. The technical sales person loved hearing themselves talk and would rant on and get off-topic. I repeatedly tried to interrupt them to get them back on topic or to ask a question, and he would just keep talking without stopping. And the real sales guy made no effort to stop him when we were trying to interrupt.
- Talk about how you’re smarter than others: The technical sales guy ranted for at least 5 minutes about how smart he and the people that worked at the company are. He said at least 4 times that they all worked at Microsoft, and nobody knows how to write code for Windows more than they do. He said that if you captured the code that SQL Server monitoring software runs on the server, you’d see how simple their code is, and said that you could even write it myself. But their code is much more complex and you could never write the code we’ve written. Ha actually said, “you don’t have people as smart as us working there.”
- Keep trying to sell us software we don’t want: This company also sells monitoring software for SQL Server, and the sales guy immediately went into a spiel about all the other great products they have. I made it perfectly clear that we have monitoring software in use, and we have only a single need that we hope the one specific application could solve for us. Nonetheless, he kept trying to steer the conversation to their other products. I had to tell him several times that I don’t want to talk about the other products, just the one product. That didn’t stop them from saying that all of the monitoring software makers, other than them, produce crap that an idiot could write and is not in the same class as they are.
- Insult others for the same thing you do: When talking about the specific software we were interested in, they said that several years ago there were several vendors trying to sell software that does the same thing as theirs but if we look at their websites, we’ll see that they haven’t been kept up to date and are years behind. Then when I asked them about their website only citing support for up to SQL Server 2014, they said that their website needs to be updated. They do support SQL Server 2016 and will officially support SQL Server 2017 very soon, and the website just needs to be updated.
- Prove you’re not as smart as you say: When talking about what versions of SQL Server they support, they said that their support team is probably waiting for SQL Server 2017 to be officially released in order to officially say they support it because they often make changes right before it gets released. It was released about 6 months before that. They made several comments about features that “SQL Server doesn’t have” that it actually does. I don’t recall which ones. I asked them if they supported Distributed Availability Groups yet, and they said that they will when that feature gets released. I told them it was released in SQL Server 2016, and that I’m using that feature. He then asked if I was sure. Yes, I’m sure which features I’m using.
- Take weeks to give a cost estimate and demand an answer right away: They sent me a questionnaire so they could provide us an estimate of what the software would cost. It was simple, just asking things like how many servers we have. I sent it back within half an hour. They said they’d get the estimate to me very soon. A week later, I asked how the estimate was coming. He replied that it was waiting for final approval before sending and he’d find out where it was in that process. A week later after hearing nothing else, I asked again about the estimate. He replied that he would check on it and get back to me. 5 days later, on a Friday, he sent me the estimate (almost 3 weeks had passed). On Monday morning, he emailed me wanting to know what our decision was. I did not respond at that time. 2 days later, he emailed again asking for our decision.