The story is common. It’s a Saturday evening or a holiday, and you’re having an issue with your IBM hardware. You know you have an IBM maintenance contract for the hardware. You’re not sure what the expiration date is, or specifically what’s covered on the contract. Sure, you can call 1-800-IBM-SERV (800-426-7378) and they will tell you if you have coverage, but you may still be curious to see what exactly is shown on the contract. Enter IBM’s “Contracts Online” (COL) service.
You will need an IBM ID and be an “entitled user” for the service. (If you do not have this information, contact Arbor Solutions at firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.)
According to IBM:
“COL allows authorized users to view and execute contracts using a web browser anytime and anywhere, eliminating copying and faxing contracts and resulting in overall time and cost savings for all contracting parties…all access is protected via user’s IBM ID and password. COL notifies the users automatically via email to remind the users when action is required on their part during the contract process to prompt their response and shorten the contract cycle.”
This walkthrough will take you through the steps to view the customer maintenance contracts you are authorized to view.
Start with this link: https://www.ibm.com/support/operations/us/en/col.html
Click the button/box marked “Access Contracts Online for entitled users” – here’s a screen shot
After clicking “Access Contracts”, you will be taken to a sign in page. Click “sign in”, and you will need your IBM ID. Assuming you are entitled, you will get this screen:
You can view both active and archived contracts. For this exercise, we will look for active contracts.
Click on the “Active contracts” link (either on the left menu or in the middle screen). You will see this screen:
I recommend simply clicking on “Active contracts search”, which opens a screen with drop down menus. The first option is “Supplier”. If you have purchased the IBM contract via an IBM Business Partner (such as Arbor Solutions), the “Supplier” drop down may have two options (or more). For US customers, select “IBM – US BPS MA & TS”. This will open a new “search by” field.
In the “Search by” field, click the drop down, scroll down, and select “Organization name”. This will open a search box where you can type the company name you want to search for. In our example below, I am using Arbor Solutions. After entering the company name, click the “submit” button to start the search.
The search may take a few seconds, but will return a list of active contracts which reference your company name. You can then scroll through a list of contracts you are entitled to view. This list may include only a single contract, or might include multiple results including past contracts. To find a current contract, click on the link to the contract with the most recent date.
After clicking on the date, here is a result I received for Arbor Solutions:
Towards the bottom of the “Execute Transaction” page, there will be PDF documents you can view and/or download. These are the contract documents. In the list of contract documents, there could also be a “Statement of Work” document. In our case, there is just the contract number and date for the document name. Here is a screen shot:
Click the PDF document, and it will open your contract for viewing in your PDF reader. The PDF of the contract will include customer information and coverage dates on page one, hardware coverage on page 2, software coverage on page 3, and a legend of codes on page 4. In cases of numerous items, those page numbers may be different. The PDF can be saved on your PC, for future reference.
I highly recommend customers attempt to view their own service contracts via Contracts Online. This can help with access to your own contract details, as well as allowing you to print and file contracts for future reference.
If you need assistance with any of these steps, please feel free to contact me at email@example.com for assistance.