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Degradation of PlusNet support

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Degradation of PlusNet support

It appears to me that the support capability of PlusNet is going downhill. As an independant consultant, I refer all my clients onto Plusnet. But recently the level of knowledge of the guys in the call centre seems to have gone down significantly. The duration of wait on the technical support has increased equally significantly. Is this a case of Plusnet are growing such that they cannot support their clients effectively or is it a commercial decision to lower standards to that of competitors. I am now looking araound for alternatives as we always tell our clients that PlusNet are the best support. I would be interested in knowing if others are experiencing the same problems
19 REPLIES
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Yes, I would absolutely agree about waiting times. When I initially signed up to plusnet, less than a year ago still, I did so largely because I was so impressed with the customer service.
Local rate no. that always seemed to be answered within about ten rings, by someone who could actually sort your problem out themselves? This was virtually unheared of in our day of outsourcing telesales.
Now the ten rings have turned into ten minutes. The main benefit now seems to be the Local rate no. and I think I would rather pay for good service than not get it.
So well spotted that man 'tysanderson'. And the rest of you disgruntled service seekers, speak up and pile on the pressure. You don't get if you don't ask.
Ben_Brown
Grafter
Posts: 2,839
Registered: 13-06-2007

Degradation of PlusNet support

The demand for support has been growing very rapidly with the increase in customer numbers. Unfortunately this has meant that support are very busy, however we are actively recruiting and training to combat this.

As far as the quality of the support we give, I've been here 18 months or so and haven't noticed any drop in that time.
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Degradation of PlusNet support

you may not have seen a reduction in capability, but when on the end of a phone on a customer site and have to explain SMTP forwarding to plus net customer services it is the only conclusion I can come to. I have had the same scenario at two different times. i had two clients, both of which had exchange servers installed behind a firewall with port 79 closed. A year ago I telephoned and asked for the mail to be dequeued and the response was, "yes no problem, I have now done that for you". I had the same requirement two weeks ago and was told "I don't have the authority to do that, can you not open the port on the firewall". This is exactly what I mean. They may be "technically qualified" but they have no idea of the whole picture. It appears that PN have gone down the same route as their competitors, working on the basis that the majority of calls are from unknowing users, put operators on who can follow a script. This is going the wrong way, It is that attitude that has given BT such a bad name
Ben_Brown
Grafter
Posts: 2,839
Registered: 13-06-2007

Degradation of PlusNet support

We do train our agents as highly as we can, however there will always be gaps in knowledge of features we don't fully support such as SMTP mail forwarding. We monitor calls and tickets regularly to see where this can be improved and have ongoing training for all our agents. I assure you than none of our agents follow a script, we encorage our agents to use a locical and methodical diagnostic process.

Also, there is no need to call us to have mail dequeued to you, this can be done by raising a ticket to us via the contact us system.
LiamM
Grafter
Posts: 5,636
Registered: 12-08-2007

Degradation of PlusNet support

Quote
Also, there is no need to call us to have mail dequeued to you, this can be done by raising a ticket to us via the contact us system.


However tickets are quite often taking days to answer.... and the OP may not have wanted to wait days for his mail.
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Quote

Also, there is no need to call us to have mail dequeued to you, this can be done by raising a ticket to us via the contact us system.


But if you raise a ticket via contact us it takes hours (if not days) for a response on occassions. Perhaps a proportion of staff should be allocated to answering online tickets only?
Ben_Brown
Grafter
Posts: 2,839
Registered: 13-06-2007

Degradation of PlusNet support

Unless there is a very large volume of calls, there is always a set amount of agents just doing tickets.

Some requests can take longer than others as they need specialist members of staff to action them, however things like dequing mail can be done quite quickly as they aren't done by the general csc team, as long as the correct wizard path is followed it will be done fairly swiftly.
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Quote
I assure you than none of our agents follow a script, we encorage our agents to use a locical and methodical diagnostic process.


Really? They must all think the exact same way then!

Do they have some book of responces or something?

Chapter 1 - Dealing with a custommer with a connection problem.
"Tell the custommer, the problem is at his end, and that running a spyware scan will fix his problem. If not, tell him to run the BT speedtester until he is blue in the face. Then he should stop bothering to ring us to tell us there is a problem. Problem solved..."
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Been with +net for nigh on 3 years now and C/S HAS gone downhill recently.
Pity that you did not think to increase your support staff when you trolled the net for more customers to help fill the pockets of your shareholders.

But that would have meant LESS profit and your fat cat at the top would have had an apoplectic fit if this had even been mentioned.
You are going downhill fast +net, but you either can't or won't see it.
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Degradation of PlusNet support

I have managed customer service departments and know when a blanket answer is being applied. I, as a customer, who brings you a lot of referrals and has a lot of interaction with your C/S am telling you that MY experience of your support is that it is going downhill. Not in any of your responses is there a hint of understanding of the problem that this presents to me, your customer. You keep telling me that nothing has changed. The only way you can guage your standards is by feedback from your customers, oh that will be me then. Listen to your customers, don't tell them what they are experiencing. Your standards are slipping.
Ben_Brown
Grafter
Posts: 2,839
Registered: 13-06-2007

Degradation of PlusNet support

We have increased the level of support staff constantly and will remain to do so as the customer base grows.

We pride ourselves on our customer support and do take on customer feedback. The feedback our customers give is very important as we don't advertise - we rely on customer refferals. If people aren't happy with the service then we suffer through this.

The big problem at the moment is that BT are completely inundated with faults so it's taking longer to investigate.

To reduce the amount of faults they have to investigate and the amount of fault that are raised to them that aren't faults they are being more strict with what needs to be done to raise a fault to them.

As part of this if the fault is a speed fault, the speed test must be performed between midnight and 7 am, as at any other time the fault could be attributed to contention.
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Sorry about this, but something annoyed me today. I'll try and make it brief!

I asked for a manual regrade last Monday. BT were quick and my line speed went up to 2Mb within 2 days.
The call had been put on hold until today (8 days later), so I updated the call to ask for the rest of it to be actioned (i.e. the throttle at PN to be lifted to 2Mb)
Nothing came of this call, so I raised another call (Thursday) asking for it to be actioned.
Still nothing.
This morning (Tuesday) I receive an email telling me that an order has been placed with BT to have my line regraded (automatic ticket generated). I receive subsequent emails about BT accepting my order.
I raise another call to ask what's going on.
I receive an advanced notice of a direct debit. My normal DD came out a couple of days ago.

4 tickets for a manual regrade, which BT actually did within about 48 hours.
Not only that, but PN try to action my migration to them again and try to set up a second DD!

If the money comes out, I'm off!

(By the way, many thanks to Kerry who eventually sorted it all out!)
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Degradation of PlusNet support

Well Mr B Brown,
Be as defensive as you like in your response to our comments (although it is unlikely to endear you to us), but being as six people joined this bandwagon this afternoon, I'd show the thread to your bosses and let them make their own minds up. Their action will speak for itself.
And if we don't notice any action, I'm sure we can find alternative places to go.
Only last night, I was advised to open my new business account with demon. Now they're not as cheap as you, but then you weren't as cheap as the big boys when we all signed up with you. And we still came. Can you guess why?
Kind regards and good luck with the board,
Ed Fowkes
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Degradation of PlusNet support

And now it gets better. I am currently in the queue to be answered by CS. When I initially connect I am told wait times may be in excess of 10 minutes. Whilst I have been sat here on a clients site I am suddenly informed that the wait time may be in excess of 20 minutes. And you say things aren't getting worse. it would appear that the only option is to vote with our feet. As Ed says, it is not about being the cheapest. I agree, I will take my referrals to Demon from now on. Ty Sanderson