Broadband out 2 months after home move, will now be disconnected for 15+ days due to Plusnet error
I moved home in November last year. I phoned Plusnet to transfer my broadband to a new address, and I was assured everything was fine and received a date for the transfer. OK, all sounds good!
On the day my service was due to go live, nothing happened. So I did some digging, and I noticed a strange error in my online account. For some reason, the broadband was due to be transferred, not to my new address, but to a different house number on the same street. The only problem was that this house number does not, in fact, exist! This can be checked with any basic postcode lookup tool.
No communication from Plusnet about this error. Apparently, nobody at Plusnet realised that they are turning on a non-existent phone line.
So, I phoned Plusnet again, worried obviously that they got my details wrong and that the service would not go live. I received an apology and was told by the customer service adviser to order a 4G router - which Plusnet would reimburse me for - to cover my broadband needs while waiting for the correct line to be activated. This would take the standard 7 to 10 working days. I ordered the 4G router, used it until the date Plusnet gave me, on which the broadband began to work, without any problems.
Everything worked smoothly for about 2 and a half months. Until Tuesday night, when suddenly the light on the router turned orange.
No broadband - which is quite awkward; both me and my partner work from home, and the upload speeds for 4G are not very good, making meetings and uploading larger files (which are an essential part of my job) next to impossible. Somehow we managed to scrape by until Wednesday evening, when I managed to get in touch with Plusnet about the fault.
After doing the standard line checks, the tech support adviser realised that there was something wrong with my account. Apparently - and I have not managed to quite get to the bottom of this, so would appreciate any more information on what might actually have happened - there was an error made during the transfer of information during the home move. 3 months down the line, this made my account invalid after a system reset (? I was not sure I understood the person who tried to explain this to me), and I was no longer able to connect to broadband.
The only solution, according to the department I got passed to, was to create a new account. OK, sounds good! It took literally seconds to do this. However, for some reason, making this new account also meant that my broadband line had to be reactivated AS A COMPLETELY NEW LINE. Again, this takes... the "standard" 7 to 10 working days. Which takes us to the 11th of March, as I have been informed today. Two weeks without broadband... completely out of the blue... and not due to any technological fault - but simply because the system for transferring accounts seems to be inherently flawed.
I simply do not understand how something like this can be allowed to happen. I will obviously be raising a complaint about the issue, and expect compensation. This is not simply a failure to provide good service (although it certainly is that as well), but seemingly a fundamental error in how Plusnet do its business.
Re: Broadband out 2 months after home move, will now be disconnected for 15+ days due to Plusnet ...
25-02-2021 2:20 PM - edited 25-02-2021 2:22 PM
Thanks for your post @jfras
I'm really sorry to see how we've handled your house move. I'm firstly happy to honour the reimbursement of your 4G router we've promised but not followed up on. As its a goodwill gesture, we can't refund the money to your bank unfortunately so we'd either need to send you a cheque or add the money towards your next bills. Can you let me know how you'd want it?
Looking into the system problem with your account, when we process a house move we put bills on hold when the service is stopped at the current address and when the service is activated the new address, we'd resume the billing which results in an automatically accrued appropriate credit on the following bill.
Unfortunately due to agent error the house move order references weren't added into what we call 'install diary' on your account so our systems didn't automatically take your bills off hold. In some cases, the 'radius server' subscription remains active, so you were able to connect to the internet still. The radius server has since deactivated on your account by itself (likely because the bills are on hold) which means we're rejecting any connection attempts your router's making.
There's currently no fix for this that won't cause even bigger issues with an account, although in few cases we can do workarounds and fix the issue without creating a new account, but it'd depend various factors in our systems. Having reviewed this I'm afraid that it isn't possible here. Anything we try will cause greater issues.
We're aware this can cause a terrible experience, especially if we haven't handled it well so this type of system issue is raised as an incident, we're looking at what we can do to avoid this or fix in a more elegant way.
To get you back up and running, we've had to create a new account, placing orders with suppliers to takeover our own working line, which will generate new order references and home phone number to activate your new account with. We can't speed up a working line takeover as these take a minimum of 10 working days regardless of the circumstances. If you want to keep your number, we can renumber your line once the 'transfer' completes.
However in the meantime, I've manually activated the broadband aspect of your new account so it will allow a connection through and I've moved across the serial number of your router so it should in theory connect up automatically. Our tests are showing your router's not switched on, can you confirm or switch it on?
If the router light doesn't stay blue, could you follow the below steps to change the username in your router settings?
1. Go to the router's homepage at http://192.168.1.254
2. Click on the Advanced Settings tab
3. Type in the admin password found from the back of the router and click the OK button
4. Click on the Continue to Advanced Settings button then the Broadband tab
5. If there's a Disconnect button, click that
6. Change the username to the broadband username in the format of firstname.lastname@example.org If you can't remember this I'd check for any emails we've sent you for example an email with you bill on as we'd add the username at the top.
7. Type in your new account password, this can be reset here: https://www.plus.net/forgotpassword/ if needed.
8. Hit the Connect button.
Finally I've set a marker on your existing account to waive termination fees so when it closes in favour of your new account and we automatically generate the 'final bill' we won't charge for its cancellation.
I'm taking personal ownership of your complaint moving forward so if there are further issues, please let me know by posting back or responding to the complaint ticket you've just raised Here (I actually picked this up before you raised that ticket)