Support Services Policy (SSP)

Effective 1 July 2020 

By executing a Sales Order (either online or in hard copy) with eCS (eCommonSense) or its Authorised Partner (as applicable), the Customer hereby agrees to the terms and conditions set out in this Support Services Policy as of Order Date (as set out in the Sales Order), which governs the Customer’s access to and use of eCS Services, together with the terms and conditions of the Sales Order and PLA applicable to eCS Services.

      1.1  Maintenance includes all regularly scheduled error corrections, Software updates and those upgrades limited to improvements to features described in the Software Specification in the Sales Order. Support for additional features developed by eCS, as requested by the Customer, may be purchased separately at eCS’ then current rates.
      1.2  eCS shall maintain and update the Software. Should the Customer determine that the Software includes a defect, the Customer may at any time submit error reports.
      1.3  During maintenance periods, eCS may, at its discretion, upgrade versions, install error corrections and apply patches to the hosted systems. eCS shall use all reasonable endeavours to avoid unscheduled downtime for Software maintenance.
      1.4  eCS shall maintain a module that allows trade prices of trade Customer groups to be published to the website once they have logged in.
      1.5   eCS shall maintain technical support on the two most current releases of the Software.
      1.6  The Customer is required to accept upgrades as they become available to ensure they continue to operate on a supported version of the Software.
      2.1 Maintenance of the hosting equipment, facility, Software or other aspects of the Hosting Services that may require interruption of the Hosting Services (Maintenance Events) shall not usually be performed during 9am to 5pm local UK time (Normal Business Hours).
      (a) eCS may interrupt the eCS Services to perform emergency maintenance during the daily window of 8.00pm to 6.00am UK time.
      (b)  eCS may interrupt the Hosting Services inside Normal Business Hours for unscheduled maintenance, provided that it has given the Customer at least three working days’ advance written notice.
      2.2  Any Maintenance Events which occur during Normal Business Hours, and which were not requested or caused by the Customer, shall be considered downtime for the purpose of service availability measurement.
      2.3  eCS shall at all times endeavour to keep any service interruptions to a minimum.
      2.4  eCS may determine, at its sole discretion, that providing appropriate service levels requires additional equipment and/or bandwidth, and may install that equipment and/or bandwidth without approval from the Customer. eCS may increase the corresponding Hosting Services fees (only), as specified in the Sales Order in respect of any such installation.
      3.1  eCS shall provide training to the Customer either remotely via telephone, email, helpdesk and webinar or in person and or/ at the Customer’s premises as determined by eCS acting reasonably and charging time at a daily rate, plus travel expenses as set out in Sales Order. 
      eCS shall provide the Customer with technical support services.
      4.2  The Customer personnel responsible for the day to day website operations shall be specified and authorised to contact eCS for technical support services. Initially in the Sales Order, and subsequently changes to such individuals shall be notified in writing by the Customer.
      4.3  eCS shall provide technical support services only to that specified set of Authorised Users or the Customer’s nominated Customer service representative (CSR).
      4.4  eCS technical support shall accept e-mail ([email protected]) and web form-based incident submittal from CSRs 24 hours a day, seven days a week (Support Request).
      4.5  eCS technical support shall accept calls for English language telephone support during Normal Business Hours within any day which is not a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday in the UK (Business Day).
      4.6  eCS shall use reasonable endeavours to process support requests and to determine the source of the problem and respond to the Customer.
      4.7  eCS technical support shall respond to all support requests from CSRs within the time periods specified below, according to the priority.
      4.8  The named CSRs and Supplier technical support shall jointly determine the priority of any defect, referencing one of the following priorities:
      Priority  Description Response time Target resolution time
      P1  The entire Service is “down” and inaccessible. Priority 1 incidents shall be reported by telephone or the helpdesk. Within 1 Normal Business Hour. 4 Normal Business Hours. Issue dependant.Continuous effort after initial response and with Customer co-operation.
      P2 Operation of the Services is severely degraded, or major components of the Service are not operational and work cannot reasonably continue.  An acceptable work around is not available.Priority 2 incidents shall be reported by telephone or the helpdesk. Priority 2 incidents would generally relate to the transactional aspects of the website, for example: it might be where a Customer can access the website but cannot access their account, place an order or see their specific prices.   Within 2 Normal Business Hours. 1 Normal Business Day. Continuous effort after initial response and with Customer co-operation.  Issue dependant.
      P3 Certain non-essential features of the Service are impaired while most major components of the Service remain functional. An acceptable workaround is available.Priority 3 incidents would generally relate to the functional, but non-transactional aspects of the website, when transactions could still be made, for example: it might be where a Customer can access their account, place an order and see their specific prices, but cannot use the branch finder, or brick matcher or other non-core functionality.  Within 4 Normal Business Hours. Within 1 Business Week after initial response.  Issue dependant.
      P4 Errors that are non-disabling or cosmetic and clearly have little or no impact on the normal operation of the Services.Priority 4 incidents would generally relate to non-functional and non-transactional aspects of the website, such as typographical errors or missing text in website content that was the supplier’s responsibility.  Within 8 Normal Business Hours. A later release of the Software.  Issue dependant.
      4.9   The Supplier is deemed to have responded to a Support Request when they have replied to the initial request from the Customer. This may be in the form of an email or a telephone call, to either provide a solution, work around, notify the Customer that the troubleshooting process has begun and/or request further information.
      4.10  If no progress has been made on a Priority 1 or Priority 2 incident within the Target Resolution Time, the incident shall be escalated to the Manager of eCS Technical Services.
      4.11  If the incident is not resolved, then after each successive increment of the Target Resolution Time (for example, two hours during normal Business Hours for a Priority 1 incident, four hours during normal Business Hours for a Priority 2 incident), the incident shall be escalated to the Director of eCS Technical Services, followed by the Chief Technical Officer.
      4.12  Certain issues may require a bug fix or software patch which can only be processed during normal business hours and will be subject to development time and to controlled Quality Assurance testing procedures that will increase resolution times beyond these targets.
      4.13  eCS shall provide monitoring of its Hosting Services as described in the Sales Order, 24 hours a day, and seven days a week.
      4.14  eCS shall directly notify the CSRs of Maintenance Events (as defined in clause 2) that may affect the availability of the Hosting Services.
      4.15  The Customer shall provide front-line support to Authorised Users who are not the designated CSRs. However, the Customer’s designated CSRs may contact eCS technical support in order to report problems from Authorised Users that the Customer’s designated CSRs cannot resolve themselves after they have performed a reasonable level of diagnosis.
      4.16  The Customer shall also provide support for data integration tools and processes developed or maintained by the Customer in order to connect the Software to the Customer’s other software and databases.
      5.1  Before eCS, the Customer or the Customer’s other technology suppliers makes changes to integration interfaces between the Software and the Customer’s internal data stores or systems, eCS or the Customer shall provide written notice to the other in order to ensure the continued operation of any integration interfaces affected by such changes.
      5.2 eCS shall provide the CSRs, or the Customer shall provide eCS, with at least 60 days’ advance written notice of such changes.
      (a)  Such notice shall include at least the new interface specifications and a technical contact to answer questions on these changes.
      5.3  eCS or the Customer (as applicable) shall also provide up to 15 days of integration testing availability to ensure smooth transition from the previous interfaces to the new interfaces and the Customer shall pay for all such services relating to integration testing carried out by eCS at eCS’ then prevailing rate.

      6.1   Service Level Arrangements: The service level arrangements set out in clause 6.
      6.2  Service Availability
      (a)  We will endeavour to make the Services available to you at a target service availability goal of 99.95% uptime, except if we are unable to do so due to maintenance or a Force Majeure Event as detailed in the Support Policy and PLA.
      (b)  To the extent that the Service Levels set out in this clause 6 relate to the availability of particular eCS Services managed by eCS (Uptime Service Level), such Uptime Service Level shall be calculated in accordance with the following formula and rounded to two (2) decimal places, to determine the availability of that infrastructure during the relevant month (Relevant Period).
      Service Availability %    =   (MP – SD)/MP
      MP =    total number of minutes within the Relevant Period
      SD =    total number of minutes in the Relevant Period when the relevant Service(s) is not available, including such resolution time as is required to return the affected infrastructure to operational service or escalate to the Customer in line with agreed procedures (Service Downtime) provided that the following events shall be excluded from any assessment of Service Downtime:
      (i) Service Downtime post escalation to the Customer following the correct execution of relevant agreed procedures and use of technical initiative;
      (ii) Service Downtime notified to the Customer in advance to carry out scheduled maintenance (Permitted Downtime);
      (iii) Service Downtime resulting from emergency maintenance, in each case where eCS has taken steps to mitigate impact of downtime on the Customer;
      (iv) Service Downtime due to actions of the Customer or any of their respective contractors or agents: and
      (v) Service Downtime due to the physical failure of the Customer’s assets post escalation to the relevant third-party provider (except to the extent such failure arises from eCS’ proven failure to comply with its obligations under this agreement).
      6.3  Availability Measurement
      (a)   Availability measurement shall be carried out by eCS using the Amazon Web Services suite of tools or equivalent and is based on the monthly average percentage availability, calculated at the end of each calendar month as the total actual uptime minutes divided by total possible uptime minutes in the month.
      6.4   Service Credits
      (a)  If availability falls below the Uptime Service Level (as defined in clause 6.2(a)) in a given calendar month (Service Delivery Failure), eCS shall credit the Customer’s account by the amount calculated as the product of the total cumulative downtime (expressed as a percentage of the total possible uptime minutes in the month concerned) and the total Monthly Hosting Fee and Monthly Software Licence Fee owed for that month (Service Credit), as stipulated by the Amazon Web Services SLA.
      (b)  The maximum Service Credit allowable in a given month is limited to an amount equal to the total Monthly Hosting Fee and Monthly Software Licence Fee owed by the Customer for that month.
      6.5   Both parties acknowledge and agree that the terms of this clause 6 relating to Service Credits are not intended to operate as a penalty for eCS’ non-performance or as the Customer’s full and exclusive right and remedy, or eCS’ only obligation and liability in respect of the performance or availability of the Services, or their non-performance or non-availability.