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Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

mjones07
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Registered: ‎24-10-2018

Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

A Plusnet Sales & COT Analyst has admitted that older Plusnet products are not compatible with the new billing system creating potentially massive price hikes for long term customers, saying "legacy products do not work correctly with the new billing system" (see attached).

Plusnet defines 'legacy products' as those not currently on offer.

The same analyst has said on this forum that Plusnet has no intention of fixing the billing system such that correctly handles older products.

This suggests that recently purchased Plusnet products will also be subject to billing errors when the billing system is next revised to meet the needs of whatever new products Plusnet produces. It amounts to a planned obsolescence in Plusnet products, or rather Plusnet's ability to render any of its products obsolete whenever Plusnet finds it advantageous.

The only 'fix' Plusnet offers customers is to constantly purchase each new product Plusnet choses to offer.

12 REPLIES 12
jab1
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

I was going to reply on your other post, @mjones07, but for clarity, I'll use this one.

'Legacy products' occur in many area's of life, from old routers that still work, but get no firmware updates to keep up with advances in technology, to broadband packages which are no longer offered on the open market, but which a customer can choose to keep, even if he/she is advised at renewal time that a better/cheaper alternative is available.

As PlusNet 'retired' your product in 2014, and I assume you renew yearly, I am a little surprised that at some point in those four years, you were not offered a retention deal at a good price - I certainly was when I rang to renew in 2015, and have seen a reduction in the BB element of my bill every time I have renegotiated since.

If a product is no longer offered, and a better one is available, I am at a loss to understand why you were not so advised, or why if you were, you opted to remain on such a restricted offer.

As to your comments in your final two paragraphs, that is pure conjecture, and to me is a flawed argument - they are unlikely, given the complexity of rewriting the billing engine, to redo that unless it is necessary.

As I see it at the moment from the information available, you only really have one option - keep your usage below 10GB/month and at the end of your current contact - June next year? - either negotiate a deal on PN Unlimited or find another ISP.

Edited to add: I can't believe you needed to redact ALL that you did in the reply from the analyst that you did - was there something you wish to hide?

John
mjones07
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

@jab1 "I assume you renew yearly"

Since Sept 2007 I have never been asked to renew or received advice about new products.

Only in April of 2018 was I advised of changes in terms and conditions and an increase in price. The changes in terms and conditions did not include the end of maximum monthly spend capping (my specific grievance, which only seems to have to come into effect in the last month or so).

"As to your comments in your final two paragraphs, that is pure conjecture, and to me is a flawed argument - they are unlikely, given the complexity of rewriting the billing engine, to redo that unless it is necessary."

As the staff member has said the new billing engine was written such that it does "not work correctly" with some existing Plusnet customer accounts (eg, mine). 'Rewriting' the billing engine is only necessary because it was written to service future accounts not existing ones. Plusnet has, at any given moment, an obligation to bill all existing accounts correctly.

"Edited to add: I can't believe you needed to redact ALL that you did in the reply from the analyst that you did - was there something you wish to hide?"

What would you like to know? Please see my other thread from which it derives and to which the message in its entirety relates. On that thread you will also see that I inadvertently included information the moderator had to delete, something I am keen to avoid here.

Superuser
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

The changes in terms and conditions did not include the end of maximum monthly spend capping (my specific grievance, which only seems to have to come into effect in the last month or so).

Just to be clear here, your requirement is to be able to limit your monthly spend , yes ?

So if PlusNet offered to move you to an unlimited product at the same price and on the same non-contract basis , that would satisfy your requirement ?

mjones07
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

@MisterW

Yes that would be great if they offered that.

Except,

I would be so gob-smacked by the change in tone from "yeah, whatever, buy a product that makes more money for Plusnet" to  "how can we help" I might suffer some sort of berry aneurysm.

jab1
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

To take your points in order, as I can't be bothered to c+p.

(1) Rather like gas/electricity and some other 'continuous' suppliers, PN (and other ISP's) don't remind you when your contract ends - if you don't contact them to get a better deal, they automatically move you to a 'standard' tariff, which as I understand at PN is a monthly rolling contract - it is up to you to keep tabs on your contract. In April this year, no-one was certain of when the new billing system was going to be introduced, and CS staff certainly wouldn't know what it's implications were, so wouldn't be able to advise on that.

Surely when you were advised of the changes and conditions, and the increase in price, you contacted Plusnet, and, as I have said before, I am amazed that you either (1) weren't advised of the legacy nature of your product, or (2) weren't offered, or didn't accept, a move to PN Unlimited, which would have resolved the need for a maximum monthly spend cap.

(2) I understand that the new billing system doesn't work correctly with your product, but to me it is a reasonable presumption by it's writers that a product withdrawn 4 years ago be in use by many subscribers, and those could contact PN and be moved to a current product, should situations such as yours arise.

(3) I don't particularly want to know anything, but without context, that tiny excerpt means very little.

John
mjones07
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

(1) be amazed.

(2) the onus is on the provider not the consumer to ensure the billing system works "correctly". Please note it is the provider themselves who have described it as working incorrectly.

(3) it evidences my statement: A Plusnet Sales & COT Analyst has admitted ... "legacy products do not work correctly with the new billing system".

jab1
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

As this is being actioned by the SU's (see message 25 in the thread on the Feedback forum), I think it best I leave it with them, so no more comments from me.

John
mjones07
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

Yes it sounds scary but "being actioned by the SU's" does not (as it has been explained to me) imply wrongdoing. It means (I believe) that I might have raised an important issue which has relevance to more than one customer.

jab1
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

No, @mjones07, it doesn't 'sound scary', it just means it is being dealt with by individuals who have better access to PN, and therefore can exert more pressure.

John
Darcy1
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Registered: ‎26-10-2018

Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

@mjones07 Have you contacted PN on the option 'Thinking of leaving us'? If you tell them that you do not really want to leave but you want to find out if they can help and explain to them what has been happening, They may be able to arrange to refund any money it has cost you due to the problems, offer you a better deal than the one you are on and possibly a goodwill gesture of some sort. I have been with PN for years and have always found this team incredibly helpful and generous. You do not have to accept any changes they offer but it will enable you to make an informed decision as to whether you would be better off with a different (possibly cheaper) product or stay on the one you have. Just make sure you make it clear that you do not want to leave and you can ask them to email . Yes, like any Customer Services Team, PN occasionally get it wrong but I have always found that they sort out any problems very quickly and I have been very satisfied with my 10+ years with PN.

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jab1
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

@Darcy1 - see the reply from @JonoH on @mjones07's thread in Plusnet Feedback.:smiley:

John
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Plusnet staff admit the new billing system is not operating correctly.

Hello @mjones07,

 

I am sincerely sorry for the experience you have had from our agents. I can see that my colleague Jono has address this issue in the thread here.

 

Once again we are sincerely sorry for the inconvenience this will have caused.

If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 SammyM
 Plusnet Help Team