How the FA Cup creates unnecessary pain for IT managers

Making your IT department endure unnecessary pain would seem like a reasonable idea to many users seeking retribution for their computer experiences.

One recipe for this but which may to rebound on you [and your customers] is to follow these steps:
Such a situation occurs any time that tickets go on sale for an event. You automatically create a surge in activity as everyone tries to simultaneously log on/phone in and grab the best seats before they're gone. Inevitably the facilities can't cope as resources are maxed out and customers end up angry/frustrated etc. The situation is exacerbated by setting the start time for tickets going on sale at a peak time eg 9/10am.

This morning, for instance, the sale of West Brom's FA Cup semi final tickets go on sale online to season ticket holders, who will have an exclusive window of 4 days to get their tickets before the eligibility criteria is widened. They are guaranteed to get a ticket and allowance was made for people to buy groups of tickets together. Hence, there should have been less panic other than where you got to sit and at what price. Made no difference - the site was inevitably under strain from the high volume of log-ins being attempted.

Result - the customers will be unhappy and criticise the "lack of preparedness" of the site when it was inevitable it would be hit with high volumes. The club will challenge the supplier about it readiness, and the supplier's management will question its' IT team. They in turn will complain about "lack of resources" and no one ends up happy with the situation.

Whilst the service provider, Tickets.com, will be familiar with this scenario [they also handle Chelsea FC's ticketing], it is immensely costly to carry capacity for such occasional spikes and no one really wants to pay to have this idle capacity.

Is there a better solution I can suggest to mitigate the problem? No solution is perfect but a few options include
Just a thought.

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posted by John Wilson @ 9:44 AM Permanent Link newsvine reddit



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