Kaseya Community

ConnectWise Versus AutoTask

  • JBland

    I understand about the CW pre-sales issue. In the case of CW, they were backwards from most companies. Usually, sales is johnny on the spot, very responsive, get you anything, tell you anything that you want to know/hear. AND then after you purchase the product, support sucks....

    At CW, up until recently, they were extremely short staffed in Sales, so the one rep was overloaded. Once you purchased and had to deal with support, you find that the support staff is very different from sales. In over two years of CW use, work interupting problems were resolved in a very timely manner.

    A couple of comments, how can you compare CW training to AT if you were never a CW customer? CW has lots of training material avaliable for both newbies and experienced users that want to learn about a process.

    As for "testing" support.... Why should CW even respond to someone who is not a client? I can see both sides here and CW lets you decide what to do with calls from sources that are not in CW; either accept them or ignore them.

    If you would like to cal me I would be happy to discuss CW with you .

    Howard Cunningham

    www.macrollc.com

    howardc@macrollc.com


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: howardc
  • I appreciate your comments. Another Company we partner with uses CW so we had access to the training and gave me access to it as well. We still haven't decided to either switch them to AutoTask or we switch to Connectwise I'm still weighing the value. We also have a tech in our company that has used CW andhis exact comment was "I like AutoTaska lot better, the user interface is more refined, all though in CW it is easier to enter Time" It certainly wasn't enough information to decide either way.

    Responding to Support is a must for any company. Even the default we can't find you as a customer would suffice. This is one of the best ways to test any company's support. If I called in and it said you are 30th in queue with an average wait time of 2 hours tells me the company has a problem andwhatI can expect if I use them. No response from Email orCall in is a bad sign.

    Just from a business perspective it seems like CW is Apple and AutoTask is Microsoft. Autotask is investing a lot of money into development efforts, support, etc... Besides the smaller3-4 man shops they are pulling in some big customers, Ingram. Also I talked to a senior VP from AutoTask at a Trade show in SanDiego and they are dumping all kindsof money into development effortsand they plan to leap frog CW by Oct of this year. What that really means who knows. Maybe it's literal Smile

    I'm still convinced one needs to look at their business, find out what your needs, wants, would like to haves, and then evaluate the products. Often I see people buy a product and trying to mold their business around it like it's some magic workflow wizard that will make you successful.

    Anyways I'll give you a call as I'm sure you'll give me more information than the standard things I hear. It should also be noted that AutoTask has a fairly good support team, I know thisbecause I have to call them often, this is both good and bad :-D. Some products I use work so well I'm not sure if their support team is still alive. So anyone reading this can extrapolate from that.




    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: jbland
  • JBland said

    "I know this because I have to call them often, this is both good and bad "

    Really? I wonder why you "have to call them often". I dont find the need to contact CW much and the other CW partners that I know dont contact CW much either. I am not saying that CW does not have problems, it is just that I dont have to contact them much and when I do, things get fixed quickly.

    AT plans to leapfrog CW by this fall.. Hmm... I guess that CW is standing still.

    This is a relogious argument. I picked CW for a couple of reasons

    - I have seen more than one ASP disappear

    - My customer's information is in my office and not on a server that I dont control the access to.

    - what happens when you stop paying AT? With CW, you still have the product and can still use it.

    - With AT, if either internet connections are out, AT is dead. With CW, you still have access to CW in your office if Internet connections are out.

    - the AT mobile client is web enabled - very like OWA. The CW mobile client syncs with CW so that you do not have to be connected to work - like Outlook on the pocket pc.

    - CW was written by a company that is in the IT services business. CW runs an IT services business in Tampa, that is how CW got started.

    This is interesting, you arecomtemplating changing to CW after going with AT. I know several others that switched to CW from AT, but I have not found anyone that left CW to go to AT.

    hc




    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: howardc
  • Your last statement is interesting. I don't know of a single person that has switched from CW to AT as well. I'm only looking at my options as we have partnered with another company that has CW, at this point we could go either way.

    -James


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: jbland
  • The problem with this stuff is that it would take soo much work for someone to breakdown the reasons why CW is better than AT. (remember - we ran Autotask for 1 year before switching to CW). Also, if I could have both programs side by side and video capture, then you could REALLY see the difference.

    Another REALLY big reason why Connectwise shines is that there is a REGULAR client software. As in, Autotask is only web. Connectwise provides a full client software. This may seem like it's not a big deal but it's huge. (though there is a mobile client, web client).

    Compare working in OWA v.s. Outlook 2007. Which one are you using when you are at your computer? Why is that? Exactly.

    Also, another thing I disliked about AT was that I couldn't have more than one ticket open without the fear of losing a ticket. Also, if I had a ticket open and clicked on an email URL link in my email (which would try to open a browser) - it seemed that much to often it would open in my ticket and I would lose everything in my ticket.

    The service board is just completely inferior to Connectwise.In Autotask you had to make aQueue (persay) per client. This makes no sense as you would either A.) have to run a report to findthings, or B.) Click on each client to find open tickets. Thedispatch was also just inferior. The way you saw people's schedules and manipulate them is just cumbersome. With connectwise I can re-organize people's schedule in seconds (drag-drop, stretch, shrink,etc).

    The Sales/CRM in Connectwise puts Autotask's to shame. This is just such a big topic I wouldn't know where to start.

    Anyway. I hope this helps.






    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: far182
  • Does the client work over the internet. Meaning if your at home/customer site with an Internet Connection can you use the client which is connected to the CW server at a Colo.






    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: jbland
  • jbland wrote:
    Does the client work over the internet. Meaning if your at home/customer site with an Internet Connection can you use the client which is connected to the CW server at a Colo.





    Yep

    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: far182
  • We've begun the implementation of Connectwise and I am a little underwhelmed.

    I know that a lot of you are quite impressed. Let me tell you what issues I am having and maybe one of you can comment.

    1. The email connector runs at most every 5 minutes. This means that there can be a 10 minute delay between submission of a ticket and a response. If anyone is forwarding Kaseya alerts to connectwise, this doesn't seem ideal. Our current ticketing system is almost immediate from alert to email.

    2. While Connectwise is an IT company, you certainly couldn't tell by what they deliver as a product. The product is almost a clean slate and everything needs to be configured.

    3. The Marketing manager will not allow you to send an email with an attachment.

    4. When a customer views a ticket on the portal, it attaches the original request (along with any attachments) as a .eml file which opens Outlook Express (and the associated dialog) in order to view. This will be very confusing to many of our clients who can barely open an email in outlook.

    5. The ticketing updates do not appear to be time-stamped in the portal.

    I'm beginning to think thatwe made a mistake.


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: rvines
  • You should work on finding the best product, that you can afford, for your business. Don't look at it, you pay, and pay, and pay, because they are all like this. Every product has maintenance and I wouldn't recommend anyone getting skimping on this, unless you plan to stand still while your competition passes you by.

    The PSA products actually pay for themselves and streamline your business processes, if done correctly.

    I haven'thad much experience with the CRM product, but avoid AutoTask unless you want to make your business less efficient. We are currently in the process of migrating to Connectwise.

    AutoTask has several issues that we could no longer cope with. I'm not just talking about myself, but we have 12Tech's and a handful of Salesand they would always complain about AutoTask. The straw that broke the camels back for me was when my customers were complaining about it (The shortfalls).

    Ailments in Autotask:


    1. No message Treading. When a client replies to you this is a new ticket.
    2. Need to buy a 3rd party tool to get Email to work, addtional $200, plus configuration and you'll need to run this somewhere like a server. This is because their email gateway uses XML and you need to tag every message. The product is email2db, it's a good product but not made by AutoTask.
    3. No merging of tickets, which wouldn't be a big issue, but since you can't thread it becomes a hassle of cut and paste and you lose all the time stamps, etc...
    4. Slow - They have made upgrades after upgrade, but often we get timeout's or it's just plain slow. Our Tech's are always on the move and when they encounter this it's just plain frustrating and they end up having to put the entry in later. We all know what happens when you put things off, either it doesn't get done or they forget what they did. This is equivalent to bleeding money.
    5. Default Contract for clients are not selected when you email a ticket in. This is annoying because when I am approving time later on, I need to edit each service ticket to update the default contract so the billing is correct. Another time waster to get your billing right. Also what is the point of calling it default, when it won't default.
    6. No ability to select a default reply address. So when you reply to a ticket, which is another nightmare in itself, your reply address will be your email address. So if you or a tech takes a vacation you'll need to use a vacation message otherwise you could have a surprise ticket in you email when you return.

    I could go on and on, but you get the point about AutoTask. Connectwise we're just getting started but a partner company of ours uses it and all the problems I talked about are just not there in Connectwise. Also another aspect that I can't for is the integration with Kaseya. We charge per seat of Kaseya and Connectwise is aware of the number of seats in use. Which no other product we looked at is aware of.

    -James


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: jbland
  • Thanks, that's good info.

    I spoke with Howard Cunningham too.

    I guess that it is always a trade off and there are somethings about my current ticketing solution that I really have trouble giving up.

    Also, like anything else, there is a learning curve.


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: rvines
  • rvines wrote:
    We've begun the implementation of Connectwise and I am a little underwhelmed.

    I know that a lot of you are quite impressed. Let me tell you what issues I am having and maybe one of you can comment.

    1. The email connector runs at most every 5 minutes. This means that there can be a 10 minute delay between submission of a ticket and a response. If anyone is forwarding Kaseya alerts to connectwise, this doesn't seem ideal. Our current ticketing system is almost immediate from alert to email.

    2. While Connectwise is an IT company, you certainly couldn't tell by what they deliver as a product. The product is almost a clean slate and everything needs to be configured.

    3. The Marketing manager will not allow you to send an email with an attachment.

    4. When a customer views a ticket on the portal, it attaches the original request (along with any attachments) as a .eml file which opens Outlook Express (and the associated dialog) in order to view. This will be very confusing to many of our clients who can barely open an email in outlook.

    5. The ticketing updates do not appear to be time-stamped in the portal.

    I'm beginning to think thatwe made a mistake.


    Like any professional product, you are going to need to customize it for your company. Spend some time learning how to customize it to work with your company and you will see great results. For example you can make the email connector run much faster than 5 minutes. We have ours running every 1mins (we used to-do this every 30 seconds, but later found it unneeded).

    We never had any .eml issues.

    I also wish the Marketing manager was more fully featured. Things we have asked for is a scheduler of sorts.


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: far182
  • Connectwise says not to run the connector faster than 5 minutes or it will cause problems. So I take it that it runs fine for you.

    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: rvines
  • Never had a problem. Not sure why they would say that. Only thing I can think of is if it takes a few mins to proccess the ammount of new email coming in. Though, if you run the batch file more often there should be less queued up.

    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: far182
  • I'm beginning to think we made a huge mistake as well. I knew that Autotask didn't have all the funtionality that Connectwise did yet I could already be up and running.

    More than anything I wouldn't have all the headache and frustration. Connectwise charges you to do their "Proprietary" setup. I have never heard of such. Normally you buy software and they set it up.And they give you very little support. I have had nothing but problems setting this up and I emailed support and the office manager and received no response for several days. Finally when I did get a response from a tech he referred me to their installation document. I had been going off that for a week and the links didn't even work in it. Plus the way it is written it might as well have been Greek. They use setup that no one else uses I have seen in 12 years of I.T. And the office manager still hasn't replied.

    ME


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: Medde
  • Howard,

    I took your advice and got Connectwise. They have been extremely hard to deal with and seem to be stuck on me doing all their proprietary setup. I have contacted support and can't get any help so I was wondering if you could answer some questions for me on the MSP integration part?



    Thanks, ME


    Legacy Forum Name: Partner to Partner,
    Legacy Posted By Username: Medde