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New customer, using old number- a shambles

BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

New customer, using old number- a shambles

So I had issues with Virgin over terrible customer support and losing one of my clients when messages I'd sent weren't delivered after swapping a SIM card and having been given totally the wrong information about this process.

After repeated bad experiences with Virgin customer support, I decided to move to Plusnet.

When I phoned up last Thursday for advice, I was told that to make the process as smooth as possible, I should give them my PAC code at the same time as placing the order for the new SIM to make keeping my number as pain-free as possible with no disruption.

Despite being incredibly busy, I made time to phone Virgin which took a long time, and spent quite some time placing the order with Plusnet, which meant I was late for business commitments, etc. But I wanted to catch your offer before it expired later that day.

When my SIM card arrived on Monday, there was no mention of the number port, and when I called your customer support, they told me there was no record of my PAC code I'd given on Thursday, and no note of it on your system. This meant I wasted over an hour of my afternoon on Thursday when I could have just applied for the new SIM card online, and filled me with apprehension about the porting process which now had an extra layer of complication with a new number.

I asked very clearly on multiple separate occasions how straightforward it would be to swap SIM cards using the same number without losing important calls and messages and was reassured every time how easy it would be.

Well, I lost the use of my old SIM this morning and have not been able to receive *any* of my calls or messages all day- and it's now almost 4pm. This is completely unacceptable, I explained over and over that my reason for transferring to Plusnet was because of losing a client as a result of messages being lost when I swapped SIM cards with Virgin.

So I called yesterday at 4:15pm to question the missing information about the number port, and was told I had to instigate this process from scratch which I did- and it's now 24 hours later and the number still has not ported- the SIM card is still using the new number I didn't want.

This whole process is a shambles and it would have just been easier to stick with my old provider rather than risk losing more clients as now I have no idea who's been phoning or messaging me all day. When I try to text my old number- it just says 'send failed' which looks incredibly unprofessional.

And now after looking at this forum I'm filled with even more apprehension as to whether I'll even have my normal number back within the next two weeks. I heavily regret moving to Plusnet and am incredibly inconvenienced by not having my usual number operational all day, with huge anxiety over when it will go live.

I'd like some clarifications- with the method I was recommended of giving my PAC code while placing the order, how long does it normally take between the old SIM card stopping and the new SIM card with the old number going live?

Now that I've had to do a port *after* receiving the SIM card with a new number, how long does it normally take between the old SIM card stopping and the new number going live? Your website says it takes one working day, but in reality how many hours does this involve? Is it actually normal for it to take 24 hours or more?

12 REPLIES
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 103
Thanks: 22
Fixes: 5
Registered: 27-09-2017

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Hi BobsterLobster!

I am very sorry to hear that your experience so far has not been the best, I assure you I will do everything I can to turn this around for you!

A port-in usually takes 1 working day when processed before 6PM, or 2 working days when processed after 6PM. It sounds like, from what you have advised above, you completed the porting process over the phone yesterday. If this was before 6PM, then your number should be ported by midnight tonight. If it was after 6PM, then this will change anytime up to midnight tomorrow.

The reason we cannot specify the exact timescale between your old SIM de-activating and your Plusnet SIM having your desired number, is because porting a number is a manual process that involves an awful lot of moving parts including contact with all previous providers that this number has ever been registered with. This means some ports can be a lot more complex than others, hence the variation of timescales each customer can experience at this stage. We do, however, always advise that there will be disruption of some kind during the porting process, as is the case with all Mobile Networks.

I am sincerely sorry that it seems the sales agent who signed you up did not complete the port in request at time of sign up. I can completely understand your frustrations with this, and I will be sure to get this investigated as this is definitely not the usual high standard of service expected from all our agents.

I would also like to apologise for the inconvenience caused to your business due to you being without this number today. I assure you that the port will be completed ASAP, and that you will be up and running on this number again in no time. Unfortunately, though, we do advise as part of the Terms & Conditions at sign up, that we do not support business lines, and therefore cannot be held accountable for any loss of business due to the porting process causing disruption.

If you send me a PM, I can have a look into your account to see how I can assist further with this, as I really would like to turn your experience around for you! 

-Liv

 Liv Robinson
 Plusnet Help Team
BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Hi Liv, thanks for your reply, I've sent a PM.

Could you also respond to the question of how long I would have been without my normal phone number if the PAC code had been dealt with correctly when I placed the order on Thurday?

Thanks

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 103
Thanks: 22
Fixes: 5
Registered: 27-09-2017

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

BobsterLobster

Regardless of when or how you started the port, the timescale between the old SIM cutting off and the new SIM having your number is still one that we would be unable to advise on due to the amount of moving parts in a manual port. Porting in at time of sign up will not speed up or change this manual porting process, therefore the timescales will be the same.

I will be sure to pick up your PM now, and I will have a look into your account to see if there is any further assistance I can offer with this Smiley

-Liv

 Liv Robinson
 Plusnet Help Team
BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Having now (sadly too late) read the vast amounts of angry posts about problems with Plusnet number porting, I'm entirely unsurprised that the number still hasn't ported- I got a text message on my new number (that I don't want) this morning saying there is a snag with the number port. This seems to be an issue that Plusnet have been aware of and still not fixed after well over a year of similar huge amounts of disgruntled customers.

I believe that it is a legal requirement to successfully port any number within 24 hours?

Not only is this having effects on my business (how many people seriously have 2 phones for personal and business?!), but yesterday was my birthday and I'm only today slowly finding out that people were trying to contact me. Thanks Plusnet. :-(

Very very unhappy and enormously regret changing providers.

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 103
Thanks: 22
Fixes: 5
Registered: 27-09-2017

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Oh dear, I am very sorry to hear the port is now delayed BobsterLobster!

I have responded to your PM to have a look into your account, and can assure you that the Operations Team are aware of the delay and are working hard to get this resolved ASAP.

Each week, we process thousands of port-in requests, and it is a very rare occurrence that an issue arises. As I am sure you have seen from the previous posts, on these odd occasions that an issue does arise our Operations Team will fix it as promptly as possible.

As standard, we do complete a port within 1 working day (if requested before 6PM). Unfortunately though, issues such as yours are impossible to foresee, but will always be dealt with as a priority, as we completely understand the inconvenience this can cause.

I will continue to assist over PM, and we will make sure you are up and running in no time!

-Liv

 Liv Robinson
 Plusnet Help Team
BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

So my old number was ported over this morning, meaning I was without my usual number for 3 days.
Many people have told me they've sent me messages (let alone all the ones I don't know about), and I've received none of them. I was told definitely that this would not happen on multiple occasions when talking to Plusnet.


Here are some extracts from the transcripts of the various conversations I've had with Plusnet (I record my phone calls):


Jan 18th 7:47pm (start of call- this conversation was when I placed the order for the new SIM card)

Me: One of the reasons why I'm ditching Virgin is I needed a new SIM card and the whole thing was monumentally badly mismanaged and I lost an important client as a result of the whole switchover, so can I clarify exactly what happens with keeping the same number that I'm using at the moment and when I can use that same number with your new SIM card?

Answer: So, leave your SIM card in your phone, ok? Then when you start to lose a little tiny bit of service, it's not much, it's just a little bit of service, you might notice it, you might not- so that means we are taking ownership of your number. The minute that happens, put your simcard in your phone.


(Well, I've now lost more money as a result of being without my old number due to people not being able to contact me. I appreciate this is not a business line, but how many people seriously carry around 2 phones on them all the time? It's just not practical. At a later date, a customer services person told me that actually no it was impossible for my old number to go straight to the new SIM card, that actually I would have had to wait a full business day without the use of my old number. This is clearly not what I was told when I placed the original order for the SIM card on Jan 18th.)

 

Jan 22nd 4:14pm (this call was to find out why I had a new phone number and no mention of a number port)

Me: What's the easiest method for me to be able to swap my SIM card without losing any important phone calls or messages being sent off that don't get received and all that kind of thing?

Plusnet: You can keep your old SIM in in the meantime with the number on it, and then that will cut off tomorrow once the number port starts going through.

Me: So how will I know once the number has been successfully ported?

Plusnet: You'll get a text message tomorrow confirming that.

Me: Wait a minute- but once it's been successfully ported, how will I get the text message? Because that SIM card won't be working.

Plusnet: You'll get it on your Plusnet SIM.

(Here I explained how with Virgin my old SIM card did not suddently stop working, it still looked as if it was working but wasn't sending messages.)


(So here in this conversation, I was very clear about the importance of not losing important phone calls and messages. This seems to have been ignored and the dangers of this number porting were not explained in any way. I would never have agreed to a number port if I'd have known the risks of losing calls and messages.)

 

Jan 23rd 3:02pm (chasing the delayed number port)

(talking about getting all the messages I'd not been getting)

Me: So at some point I will get all those messages through, just not yet?

Plusnet: That is correct. The number will definitely come over to you today, and the messages will come over. It might just mean that you'll have to restart the phone at some point in the day for them to come over you see.

(This person went on to tell me the total opposite to the original sales person- that I would have had no choice but to spend a whole working day with an interim number even if the PAC code I gave on the 18th Jan had actually gone through the system properly.
I was also very clearly told that I would definitely get all the messages that I'd been missing in the future.)


Jan 25th 2:28pm

(Explained I was told my messages would come through to me and the rest of the situation)

Me: Where are my messages and how can I get them?

Plusnet: In terms of the messages themselves, they normally come through to the phone, so the old number only goes inactive for a very short amount of time so any messages that have been...

Me: It's been 3 days. It was 3 days that the old number was inactive.

...

Plusnet: In terms of the text messages, normally customers- we don't really have this issue because text messages normally just come through to be honest, I've never really had anyone say that, so the only thing I can say right now is maybe just await them for if you lose them there's no way of getting them back.

 

So at every step and every phone conversation I'm being given wrong and misleading information.
I would have dealt with things differently at every step if I knew I was:
- going to have to have an interim phone number while waiting for my old number to port
- that porting the number took a working day while using an interim number
- that actually porting the number would not 'definitely' happen on the 23rd Jan
- that actually I would lose all the messages and calls that happened while the number was porting
- that there were risks involved in losing important messages and calls when porting a number

It's been very nice to not have to deal with an overseas call centre which was a strong factor in moving to Plusnet, but this is meaningless if I'm constantly being given the wrong information, and I waste my time calling to place the order with my PAC code (and getting my PAC code from Virgin at a really bad time that was very time consuming) when that information was then not registered on the system.

It's also been pointed out that this situation is unusual, but this is not my impression when I google 'Plusnet mobile porting problem', and there are vast amounts of posts on this forum not only talking about similar problems, but detailing the poor ways in which the situation is then managed and dealt with. This company do not seem to be actually learning in any way from years worth of other people experiencing this same problem.

I very much hope that this issue is not fobbed off with platitudes, but that somebody senior looks into this and actually implements changes to prevent this kind of bad feeling, and procedures to make sure that customers are given realistic expectations.

BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Jan 22nd 4:14pm (this call was to find out why I had a new phone number and no mention of a number port)

Me: What's the easiest method for me to be able to swap my SIM card without losing any important phone calls or messages
being sent off that don't get received and all that kind of thing?

Plusnet: You can keep your old SIM in in the meantime with the number on it, and then that will cut off tomorrow once the
number port starts going through.

Me: So how will I know once the number has been successfully ported?

Plusnet: You'll get a text message tomorrow confirming that.

Me: Wait a minute- but once it's been successfully ported, how will I get the text message? Because that SIM card won't be
working.

Plusnet: You'll get it on your Plusnet SIM.

(Here I explained how with Virgin my old SIM card did not suddently stop working, it still looked as if it was working but
wasn't sending messages.)


(So here in this conversation, I was very clear about the importance of not losing important phone calls and messages. This
seems to have been ignored and the dangers of this number porting were not explained in any way. I would never have agreed
to a number port if I'd have known the risks of losing calls and messages.)

BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Jan 23rd 3:02pm (chasing the delayed number port)

(talking about getting all the messages I'd not been getting)

Me: So at some point I will get all those messages through, just not yet?

Plusnet: That is correct. The number will definitely come over to you today, and the messages will come over. It might just
mean that you'll have to restart the phone at some point in the day for them to come over you see.

(This person went on to tell me the total opposite to the original sales person- that I would have had no choice but to
spend a whole working day with an interim number even if the PAC code I gave on the 18th Jan had actually gone through the
system properly.
I was also very clearly told that I would definitely get all the messages that I'd been missing in the future.)


Jan 25th 2:28pm

(Explained I was told my messages would come through to me and the rest of the situation)

Me: Where are my messages and how can I get them?

Plusnet: In terms of the messages themselves, they normally come through to the phone, so the old number only goes inactive
for a very short amount of time so any messages that have been...

Me: It's been 3 days. It was 3 days that the old number was inactive.

...

Plusnet: In terms of the text messages, normally customers- we don't really have this issue because text messages normally
just come through to be honest, I've never really had anyone say that, so the only thing I can say right now is maybe just
await them for if you lose them there's no way of getting them back.

BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

So at every step and every phone conversation I'm being given wrong and misleading information.
I would have dealt with things differently at every step if I knew I was:
- going to have to have an interim phone number while waiting for my old number to port
- that porting the number took a working day while using an interim number
- that actually porting the number would not 'definitely' happen on the 23rd Jan
- that actually I would lose all the messages and calls that happened while the number was porting
- that there were risks involved in losing important messages and calls when porting a number

It's been very nice to not have to deal with an overseas call centre which was a strong factor in moving to Plusnet, but
this is meaningless if I'm constantly being given the wrong information, and I waste my time calling to place the order
with my PAC code (and getting my PAC code from Virgin at a really bad time that was very time consuming) when that
information was then not registered on the system.

It's also been pointed out that this situation is unusual, but this is not my impression when I google 'Plusnet mobile
porting problem', and there are vast amounts of posts on this forum not only talking about similar problems, but detailing
the poor ways in which the situation is then managed and dealt with. This company do not seem to be actually learning in
any way from years worth of other people experiencing this same problem.

I very much hope that this issue is not fobbed off with platitudes, but that somebody senior looks into this and actually
implements changes to prevent this kind of bad feeling, and procedures to make sure that customers are given realistic
expectations.

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 103
Thanks: 22
Fixes: 5
Registered: 27-09-2017

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

I have responded to your PM and passed your details on to my manager, @BobsterLobster!

He has assured me that you will receive a call from him today, and that he will be able to get this all resolved for you.

Once again, I am sincerely sorry about the inconvenience this has caused, and I hope that we are able to turn this experience around, as this is definitely not a reflection of our usual high standard for our customers!

Thank you for your continued patience, and please be sure to let me know via PM how you get on going forward Smiley

-Liv

 Liv Robinson
 Plusnet Help Team
BobsterLobster
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: 23-01-2018

Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

Thanks Liv for your time and for getting this escalated.

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Re: New customer, using old number- a shambles

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