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ISP NewNet Warns of Fault Resolution Delays

Posted: 08th Nov, 2006 By: MarkJ
UK ISP NewNet has warned its customers to expect longer than usual delays when handling broadband fault reports. The primary problem seems to be at BT's Openreach divison and may impact other providers:

Over recent weeks, BT have been engaged in a regulatory process of separating components of their services. The creation of Openreach is intended to ensure equivalence of access for all of the UK telecomms industry, other providers, as well as other parts of BT, to the local access and backhaul networks.

The result of this change is that there is now a separation between Broadband services such as ADSL and SDSL (provisioned through BT Wholesale) and the local access circuit (provision and maintained by Openreach). Over the next few weeks, customers with BT PSTN circuits will become Openreach LLU (local loop unbundled) customers.

NewNet is already seeing the effects of the changes, particularly in relation to the management and escalation of Broadband faults. There is now clear indication that some faults are taking longer to progress to resolution - particularly where these relate to the actual PSTN line or exchange equipment. As a result of the Openreach separation, an additional layer has now been inserted into the fault resolution process and this invariably causes delay and disruption to the flow of information to keep both ourselves and our customers updated on progress.

NewNet very much regrets the delay and inconvenience caused to customers. NewNet has already taken steps to improve its Helpdesk performance by appointing new staff and the latest recruits are now in place and working to help customers. However, their tasks are now being impeded by the additional time taken to chase and progress Broadband faults and this is having a knock on effect on customer service perception.

The intention is that, in time, Openreach will deliver an improved national network, replacing old cables and components that do not support Broadband services. At present NewNet is seeing problems similar to the initial phase of ADSL MAX and is warning customers that it anticipates problems getting worse before they get better. In common with its commitment to customer support, NewNet is pressing BT management with its concerns and experiences at this time.

It may sound a little confusing, although the general idea is that even BT’s own non-LLU ADSL service complaints are to be handled through ‘Openreach’, not just those lines provisioned through unbundling (LLU).
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