System Slowness: Updated 9/30

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    Mark Sedgley

    All,

    The system is coming back up as I write this. As per my previous posts we will continue to monitor the performance of the product and keep you posted.  We should be back up shortly.  

     

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    Adrienne Bryant

    I'll throw in my support as well. We've only been a customer for a little over a year. Love the product, big fan, and am currently working with several associations in Tallahassee advising them on the benefits of the system. But to echo the sentiment of others, it's getting increasingly difficult to want to recommend without getting that UGH feeling. I know, as I tell everyone, no one system is going to be perfect for everyone, or even meet all of the needs we require. And I feel your pain as a company and staff. Like everyone else, My co-database manager and I are feeling the frustration of the complaints from staff and members these days. You're billed as the Small Staff Solution and to help us make our jobs easier, but right now, I'm not feeling it. I'm not mad, but am hopeful that you can figure out what is going on and implement a long-term solution to the problem and not just band-aids.

    Thanks to all of you for what you do as you are appreciated but I'm going to be bald soon if we can't get back to a decent level of service.
     Thank you.

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    Christine Meert

    Suggestion: maybe Memberclicks could give us all a substantial discount on our next bill to reward our patience and encourage us to remain patient?????

    Christine

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    Mikael Blaisdell

    I submitted an enhancement request due to this afternoon's experience, asking for a system-wide alert message to be displayed when you login to the Admin area.  I discovered this topic by accident later. 

    From the number of comments, I'll bet that Support had a busy day today fielding a bunch of preventable calls. 

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    Justin

    We've rolled out several application changes today and we're still seeing slowness being caused by the user database. Our engineering team continues to be all hands on deck.

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    Paula Chase-Hyman

    Fingers crossed that the system remain up. It's really quite nice, not to mention efficient, at this new speed.

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    Kirsten Phillips

    We are still experiencing slowness and receiving error messages behind the scenes. I've grown tired of receiving these weekly notifications that there are issues. After seeing a rapid decline in service, we are planning to leave MemberClicks later this fall. We understand no product is perfect, but instead of growing and becoming a better product, MemberClicks continues to get worse. 

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    Linda Krause

    I'm with Christine-I'm 6 days from a conference and it's frustrating. I could be losing a ton of those last minute registrants : (  A discount would be nice as this is the 2nd issue this month with MC. Linda

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    Paula Chase-Hyman

    I've read all the comments with interest. As some have indicated, I too have been trying to get buy-in from our  membership to use the system more and the slowness is a huge deterrent. My hope is that MemberClicks will resolve these issues soon! It took ALOT of convincing to get our management to let us switch to a more user-friendly database, after having a customized system that was far too sophisticated for our sized organization. MemberClicks offers the user-friendly infrastructure that we need.  There would be serious consequences if we proposed switching again after only a year. But if we're unable to get people to use the system because it's slow and has glitches we won't have a choice.

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    Carolyn Fahey

    Justin -- I am becoming increasingly frustrated with the frequency of "glitches" with MemberClicks lately.  For at least a month there have been periods where something is not working effectively - I have been on the phone multiple times with support due to problems with embedded form links, system slowness, times when the database has been completely unavailable, have experienced sluggishness when working on contact center messages and articles.  I have always been impressed with the MemberClicks service and a fan of its capabilities, but due to the recent ongoing issues, if someone came to me to ask if I would recommend MemberClicks to them I would not do so at this time.  It is really quite disappointing.

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    Mark Sedgley

    All,

    E-lists were restored to their normal operations at 3:23 EST.  As we continue to move through our product, we will be bringing down all search functions from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm EST.  We will present a custom message to all users attempting to access a search during that time.  Please continue to bare with us.  We are attempting to mitigate the impact to you to our greatest ability while also being as aggressive as we possibly can in solving this matter.

    Regards,

    -Mark 

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    Joan Vandergriff

    Hey, Justin. This is really frustrating. A few tools work, which allows us to do some work, but then when we go to save, it just churns away and never completes the save. I've always thought the admin tools were slow, but this is really bad.

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    Duncan McCreery

    Update: Several configuration changes to the main database were rolled out late last night, finishing up just after 4 a.m. Eastern.  As you have seen, there have been several bumps this morning as these changes are better tuned.  We'll post another update as we move forward.

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    Perry Mills

    Not being aware of the actual technical issues, if Memberclicks is using Oracle, then that is probably the culprit.  The database on the IBM i server, DB2, is profoundly better and reliable.  I can sell Memberclicks this server if they like, as my company is an IBM Business Partner.  I am only half kidding about this.  We too have experienced some major difficulties, but I trust the team at Memberclicks to get this ironed out shortly.

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    Christine Meert

    Please, Memberclicks team, could you address everybody's frustration? Your reports, Duncan, Richie and Justin, are not really helping. We would like to have HOPE that your continual slowness and glitches of these past months is coming to an end and that Memberclicks will run smoothly form now on as it used to before. It is really frustrating and we have to say that we are also looking elsewhere because of all these glitches. We can't afford to have an off and on business... We need reassurance, we'll give it a try a bit more, but if it doesn't improve, we'll have to leave Memberclicks. We've been with you since the end of 2007, so we know you can do better!

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    Anne McKillips

    These glitches are getting to be a real issue.  Our website was down the other day and now accessing data is so slow.  We have a major conference next week and makes me wonder if staying with Memberclicks is the right decision when it is time to look at our contract.  This has been going on entirely too long.  Focus on fixing the issues rather than rolling out upgrades.  Don't roll out upgrades until the glitches are fixed.  

    Memberclicks needs a major overhaul - yes many updates are desperately needed but fix what you have first.  

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    Paul Talbut

    I'd just like to point out that Memberclicks has users outside the US and so any requests for maintenance overnight will mean maintenance during the day for us.

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    Isha Torres

    One suggestion is to stop "rolling out" your system changes during business hours! How about doing your system updates during the overnight, light traffic hours when customers are much less likely to be using the system?

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    Mark Sedgley

    Annelise,

    Thank you for posing this question and I apologize that I didn't directly speak to this in my previous post.  We are currently working with several Oracle experts and Oracle's top tier support team to deliver a solution.  It absolutely pains me that I can't answer your question with a specific time or date at this point.  However, as we've introduced each of the suggestions from our teams we continue to see incremental progress.  Unfortunately, I don't feel comfortable at this point giving you an ETA for normalized performance.  I know how disruptive that is.  Not to mention just not helpful.  Please be assured every single resource that could contribute to a timely resolution is in play at MemberClicks.  I will continue to update you as we go.   Thank you again for continued patience and understanding.   

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    Bob Schilmoeller

    Thank you Eric for your words.  I am traveling to California for two weeks for work meetings.   I have watched this all from afar and trying to preach patience to my Board.  Your words matched my sentiments.  I have also looked at the timestamps of the messages coming from Mark and Duncan.  I have been on that end of bad situations like this, and they are not fun.  We do need to give them the room to do their job.  Then we we all deserve all of the information you describe in your last paragraph.   If we don't get it, then I will be on the phone...

    Mark, Duncan and team I wish you the very best in troubleshooting this.  You are feeling our pain.  Thank you for your persistence.

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    Mary Schuerman

    My association council has been waiting for upgrades to the website since Monday and I have been unable to accomplish this.   I am having a hard time explaining why technical problems have not been resolved yet.Sounds like a major problem with the system.

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    Brett Shankman

    My site appears to be down again.  Not to mention the dramatic slowness with the database and administrative side.  I pushed my agency to join MemberClicks just a few months ago.  Not the auspicious beginning that I had been hoping for. 
    I'm hoping for a very quick resolution to these issues.

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    Christine Meert

    Yes, we have many clients overseas.... will have to email them to let them know, bummer!

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    Katie Kadas

    I also have to agree with the comments being said regarding, glitches, slowness, and very untimely "system rollouts."  My calls to MemberClicks used to be a lot more frequent, however I have basically thrown in the towel (so to speak) in terms of notifying MemberClicks of these ongoing issues. 

    Thanks and hope it gets better!

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    Dana Murphy-Love

    Mark,

    I appreciate your comments and transparency at this time, however, it really would have been great to know this earlier.  We have a client that has a conference in just over a week and another international client that opened registration for their conference recently.  We are getting very irritating calls from members stating that our registration system is broken.  This is really causing us serious issues with member service.  Our members don't care what the platform is, and that the platform is provided by another vendor.  They are blaming us and we can do nothing but take on the blame, because that's what good member service is about.  I've got a staff now that is also questioning our ability to make good decisions when it comes to products we use for our clients since it is causing them so much headache.  I'm venting here, but I'm very, very, frustrated.  Thanks for listening and I hope this all gets resolved soon.

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    Mark Sedgley

    All,

    We rolled out several changes last night in an attempt to address our ongoing product issues.  As Harvey mentioned these changes have made incremental improvements.  I'm very disappointed, however, to write that despite these improvements you will experience continued sporadic and intermittent product performance issues.  With that said I want you to know what we are doing at this point.

    1.  We are going to provide ongoing support through the weekend both e-mail and phone.  If we can help we will.  Further details to come.

    2.  We will continue to work relentlessly with our collected team of Oracle experts to resolve the issues we've seen in the Oracle platform. However,  We can no longer afford to execute fixes/changes to "try" and solve the problem.  Therefore, our engineering team will continue to work 24/7 to reduce our dependency on the Oracle database.  We believe these changes will make a significant difference.  All involved agree.  This is no small task, but we are committed to work non-stop to ensure execution.  This strategy positions our team to be optimally effective while we continue to leverage the significant outside expertise we've engage on the Oracle side.

    3.  I will be crafting a communication later today detailing the events of the week and where we stand and post it here.

    4.  Due to significant direct feedback from customers subscribed to this System Performance Digest, we need to turn commenting off of this forum in order to stop inundating all of our customers' inbox that are subscribed to this post.  This does not mean we don't welcome your comments.  As a matter fact we would like to continue to address each of them directly.  My personal e-mail is mark@memberclicks.com and Duncan's is duncan@memberclicks.com.  Please send direct feedback to us and we will continue to post official updates here.

    All of us remain committed to you and we are doing everything within our power to move this forward.  Thank you.

    Best,

    -MCS

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    Mark Sedgley

    All,

    Just a quick update that our planned downtime for tonight is complete.  We are now continuing our work to ensure resolution to the issues that we've seen over the last three days.  We will keep you posted.

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    Carolyn Fahey

    I have continued to have issues this morning with logging in and have had emails from 4 members that are trying to register for our annual meeting in 3 weeks that can't get into the system.  Our numbers are lower than they should be and I can't help but wonder if that is because so may have had issues with registering.  This It is very unfortunate as I was contracted as the new Executive Director of my organization just under 18 months ago and one of the first things that I did was encourage them to implement MemberClicks.  I have a Board of Directors meeting in 3 weeks at which I must recommend changes for next year.  If this doesn't improve I certainly won't recommend that we stay with MemberClicks and I look completely foolish since I was the one that chose this system.  BIG OOPS!  

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    Eric Jacobs

    We're all frustrated by the failures at MemberClicks, but at this point, continuing to complain about the inconvenience and problems, or the times they're shutting down parts of the system, likely doesn't help them or us. Yes, a nighttime shutdown in the US will occur in daytime somewhere else in the world, but what is the alternative? They are clearly picking times designed to inconvenience what they think will be the smallest subset of their customers, but there is no time that will be perfect  for everyone. I think it's clear from the responses and postings, most coming from the president of MemberClicks (who never posts here), that they fully understand how badly and seriously their problems are causing all of us.

    I'm sure it's a nightmare scenario for them, as they have disrupted all their customers and risk losing us if they can't get things back to normal and improve reliability longterm. They're clearly trying their hardest to deal with a serious meltdown problem. So as unhappy as I am, I am also sympathetic. As someone who has complained in the past about lack of clear communication, I want to thank Mark Sedgley and Duncan for stepping up the communications as they try to get system operations corrected.

    I do hope and expect that once the immediate crisis is resolved and the dust settles, MemberClicks will share with us a more detailed explanation of what went wrong, why backups or rollbacks weren't able to be employed, how we will be compensated for the disruption in service, and most importantly, what they can and will do to implement more safeguards and redundancy to insure this can't happen again. For now, we all just have to hold our breath (and our tongues) and hope they are able to get things under control in the near future.

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    Ross Watkins

    I, too, have had many frustrating days with all the recent "upgrades".  The most frustrating thing about the slowness is that our members get tired of waiting and waiting for a registration form to process only to find out that it didn't go through. Then, they try again, and again, and again, only to find out that their submission never went through . Then, when I try to update pages and forms, and have to constantly log-off and back on again because of lock-ups, it's just crazy to waste all of this time.

    Ross Watkins

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