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BT Openreach Allow UK Customers to Feedback on Engineer Performance

Saturday, August 9th, 2014 (7:33 am) - Score 3,631

Broadband and phone engineers working for BTOpenreach and external contractors, which maintain BT’s national UK telecoms infrastructure, will soon take part in a new trial that allows residential customers to give feedback on their performance after a visit. The results probably won’t be made available to the public.

Openreach are currently inviting ISPs to sign-up in order to take part in the trial, which will begin later this month and finish no later than the end of September 2014. The trial itself will be conducted in the North-West (Mersey) for contractors and Openreach’s engineers, as well as North/East London for Kelly Communications contractors and West-Central London for Quinn’s contractors.

As part of the trial engineers working on service provision jobs (e.g. new line installations [MPF, NGA managed install and WLR], but not repair works) will be required to leave a card with residential customers “containing the number of their controls as the point of contact in the event of any post-installation issues“. Openreach claims that the “objective is to help us to identify any differences experienced” between Openreach’s engineers and those of their contractors.

It’s easy to see why Openreach might desire to take a closer look at this area, especially given that some contractors have earned themselves somewhat of a questionable reputation among ISPs for the quality of their work (here). As the Business Development Manager for AAISP, Alex Bloor, said earlier this year, “[Kelly’s] have a dreadful reputation in the industry“.

Openreach Statement

There are no SLAs on despatching engineers as the trial itself is to gather data and evidence on the types of faults and whether there any pattern to these, the frequency with which they are raised and the speed with which they are resolved by our engineering community. Any issues that are not able to be resolved with either a telephone conversation or a re-visit will also be logged as part of the trial.

At the end of the trial participating CPs will receive the feedback for their particular customers and we aim to share the high level results at the October SMF so that the wider CP community can decide post-trial upon the next steps.”

It’s perhaps no coincidence that this new measure surfaces so soon after Ofcom imposed new Quality of Service requirements upon Openreach (here) and this development should thus perhaps be seen in the wider context of those measures.

Many other industries and businesses also adopt a similar feedback orientated approach, which is often effective because giving users the ability to offer feedback can help to improve the quality of service delivery (i.e. encouraging engineers not to do shoddy work).

Hopefully Openreach’s trial won’t also make it easy for less honourable engineers to simply avoid leaving a card. In the future it would also be good to see a trial that looks more closely at non-MBORC related repair work, which might naturally focus more on Openreach’s own engineers. But generally this is a very good move by Openreach.

Leave a Comment
11 Responses
  1. Our only concerns about this, which we have already fed back to BT, is these cards should be filled in AFTER an install, not during.

    This would avoid engineers pushing towards getting 10’s if an engineer is looking over a shoulder, but also avoid engineers filling these cards in on behalf of the customer…ie: sat in a van after doing the work.

  2. Avatar Raindrops says:

    “…avoid engineers filling these cards in on behalf of the customer…ie: sat in a van after doing the work.”

    Exactly what the slap happy ones are likely to do.

  3. Avatar adslmax says:

    What IF the customer is lied feedback to Openreach or the customer knew nothing about how broadband technology work. I think the feedback should left to ISP really.

  4. Avatar john says:

    wouldn’t get my approval even if they done a good job because most of there work is shoddy and its a cowboy job .

  5. Avatar john says:

    wouldn’t get my approval if they done a good job because most of the work they do is shoddy and a cowboy job

  6. Avatar Captain Cretin says:

    I wish this had been running a few months back; the guy who fitted my fibre connection did a really good job, set it all up and even hung around for 30 minutes to make sure I could get my equipment to connect to the BT Fibre router (I had a few issues, but managed in the end).

    He even ran a LAN speed test for me, so I could see what the default speed was – as I was going to be using WLAN and so would be getting slower speeds through that.

    TBH, in the wee hours, when Wifi congestion is at its lowest, the wifi connection is only 2Mbps slower than the LAN connection (70 v 72)

  7. Avatar Sky_Customer says:

    This is very timely for me as I am in the North-West (Mersey) area and due to get FTTC (at last).

    I will be looking for the card and if not offered, I will ask.

    I know from experience that there is little comeback from any complaints and the quality of jobs done are often down to the Engineer you get and his mood after his last job !!!!!

  8. Avatar Henry says:

    The issue will be the questions. I have a poor ADSL service in inner London (frequent drops leading to upload speeds ranging between 448 kbit/s on a good day and a dysfunctional 10 kbit/s on a bad one). When I complain about the line, BT Retail sends an Openreach engineer rather than telling Openreach that the line back to the exchange is unacceptable.

    I am happy with the engineer’s work, but not with the BT service or what they ask him to do. BT then gives up (“we do not offer any guarantees on upload speed on an ADSL broadband product” and “there wouldn’t be anything further we can do in this instance”). So I end up dissatisfied with the results of the engineer’s visit even though it is not the engineer’s fault.

  9. Avatar G says:

    and on the other side we have


    I still can not believe that we are still allowing Open reach to Fail so badly without consequence.

    Its nice to see the good comments above though, but I think to be honest that they are the exception and not the rule.

    Having stopped an open reach van outside the premises of a client the other day, and asked if the work had been complete, he then blatantly lied to me telling me that he had personally pulled the cables into the building. I left him to finish filling in the cards he had which suspiciously looked like those mentioned above.

    Baloney, and I am not referring to the tasty meat treat… but the promises of BTO

  10. Avatar Keith Smith says:

    Mick Mcclennen came to repair my faulty line, it was as if I was stood in the middle of a motorway (what a noise).
    He checked and explained everything he was doing to me, after two hours of checking my internal wiring and going up and down poles he had to give in due to it being dark. Next morning he returned with a coleague and after another three and a half hours they managed to fix the problem. They both are a credit to Openreach. Thank You

  11. Avatar fulhampete says:

    My broadband went down and the phone failed. Having gone through the fault check system with BT including unscrewing and removing the box cover and placing the phone connector in the test socket at which point the phone ONLY worked I was advised the filter in the cover was broken and that if we left the phone in the test socket we would at least have the use of that until the engineer came out.
    BT offered AM or PM slot, as when they installed the system, we opted for AM slot and the engineer turned up at 5 minutes to one, just avoiding a penalty for non attendance. Of course the installation took long enough to cost me a whole days work. Because of this we agreed a PM slot BUT the engineer was to ring my mobile 30 minutes before attending so I could leave work to be there.
    Instead of doing this the engineer phoned the home number and told my son the phone was working and he would not be calling. I rang BT to complain they wanted to pass to the broadband team who then wanted to do exactly the same tests the phone team had ALREADY DONE WITH ME!!!
    I asked for the engineer details as he had failed to comply with instructions to ring me and I want to raise a formal complaint against him because not only did he not do as instructed he told BT he had tried to ring my mobile but got no answer…I keep my phone logs and he had not…..BT refused to give his name and want to cause me more stress and waste more time waiting around for their “engineer” to decide if he wants to do his job or not…….I defy anyone to say this service is better since privatisation. Absolutely disgraceful service and they want to protect awful staff

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