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FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

ruaim
Newbie
Posts: 6
Registered: 03-09-2013

FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

As I am now leaving Plusnet after more than 5 years of reliable service (under 2 accounts) – I thought I’d share my experience and the reasons why.
For 2 years I enjoyed Fibre to the cabinet at my old address and the fantastic speeds and ping times I experienced.  I moved house in May and wanted to move my service.  My new home can only be connected to FTTP - fibre to the house.  Great you may think (as I did), only Plusnet do not offer this service.  I subsequently learned of the FTTP fibre trials and joined on the 16th of May.
I am still waiting to be connected after nearly 4 months and 36 emails.  It seems that Plusnet’s relationship and communication with BT Openreach is troubled.  4 missed appointments, delays and constant fobbing off.  PlusNet never notified me of missed appointments, I had to chase them.
Plusnet is basically unable to organise this, so I am cutting my losses and moving. PlusNet just don't tell us what's happening and why.
The other question is:  why FTTP trials when BT offer it already.  What on earth is there to try?  It’s proven technology, and available with BT - are PlusNet backward or something?
Bye Plusnet, your customer communication is abysmal.
6 REPLIES
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 13,089
Thanks: 153
Fixes: 55
Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

I'm really sorry for the issues with this and that you've decided to leave due to them.
Without wishing to seem dismissive realistically FTTP trial services can and do often take a while to install. I do agree though that communication about the issues with this could have been better. Unfortunately we're limited as to what information is available to us regarding the delay of such orders and due to the way the missed appointments have occurred we haven't been made aware that would happen until you've reported that to us.
We're still trialing this at the moment as we want to make sure the service we offer is right and unfortunately part of the nature of a trial means there's the possibility of issues happening. It's clear there's a few things to learn for us from this and again I'm sorry about the poor experience.
Adam
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
ruaim
Newbie
Posts: 6
Registered: 03-09-2013

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

Thank you for your reply - unfortunately there is nothing you can do.
The funny thing is, this order was supposed to have been expedited - but last night I placed an order for 300mb Infinity and all my connection dates were given to me right away and more than a week ahead of PlusNet's.
To be honest, although BT Openreach should treat you the same as BT - it is clear they are not.
One more thing:  you could also learn from BT with their information provided after sign up.  They basically ticked every box, and none of my questions were left unanswered.
I am under no illusions that BT are or will be perfect, far from it - however they have made a significantly better start than PlusNet did.
And despite your explanation, I still fail to understand why BT can be so ahead of you with FTTP.  Its a total deal breaker.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,824
Thanks: 1
Registered: 27-10-2012

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

Quote from: ruaim
The other question is:  why FTTP trials when BT offer it already.  What on earth is there to try?  It’s proven technology, and available with BT - are PlusNet backward or something?

I think the trials were first set up when BT launched FTTP as a product. Even though FTTP is a fully launched service by BT Openreach now, it is still a niche product. I think dave (PN) said recently that there are more support staff at PN than customers trialling FTTP.
It's something I am pretty sure PN will be launching as a full product in the near future, but the staff have to be trained, new ordering systems, pricing calculated, bandwidth calculated etc. BT Openreach also made things a little more complex recently by withdrawing a lot of the speed variants. There would have been no point in PN offering a full 100/15 FTTP service only to find a month or so later, BT have decided to withdraw that speed variant.
One of my criticisms (before joining PN) is I couldn't find any ISPs offering it apart from Infinity (who I refused to join). I got told at first by PN that they couldn't offer me fibre because it wasn't available to my property. After preserving and getting through to the right people, the order was placed. I know a lot of people locally still on 1-3Mb ADSL connections - they are completely unaware that for an extra £5-10 a month, they can get x300 speeds.
Quote from: ruaim
The funny thing is, this order was supposed to have been expedited - but last night I placed an order for 300mb Infinity and all my connection dates were given to me right away and more than a week ahead of PlusNet's.

I would take that with a pinch of salt. I know a lot of local installs in my area have been hit by delays recently. My neighbour is two weeks overdue with his Infinity install because of an engineer shortage. There's also another local area which cannot take any further connections until the exchange capacity is increased for FTTP - but for some reason BT are still processing new orders...
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 13,089
Thanks: 153
Fixes: 55
Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

Quote
And despite your explanation, I still fail to understand why BT can be so ahead of you with FTTP.  Its a total deal breaker.

Although we are part of the BT group we have our own offerings in terms of broadband products and we want to make sure we get this right before making it fully available.
Adam
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
x47c
Grafter
Posts: 878
Registered: 14-08-2009

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

Sadly the OP has just learnt a valuable lesson in life
Never ever under any circumstance be the first to use, buy, trial, operate anything which is "new".
Let someone else get all the aggro,problems, no-work scenarios, failures...you name it.
Once all the problems have been ironed out by someone else only then is it safe for you to use it.
Companies everwhere like using customers for trials and for some reason retail customers flock to them - usually enticed by some freebie/low cost/price discount.
Customers volunteering never seem to take account of their own time that is going to be spent on all the problems - and sometimes fail to understand entirely that a 'trial' means that the product/service/back office support is indeed likely to fail regularly during the trial.
Conversely corporate customers will virtually write into a contract that no trials/experiments or new innovations should be undertaken or added to their product - 'cos they know exactly what that means.
In terms of software the above rule is generally extended to never buy anything of version number less than 3.  By the time is gets to this it might work properely and actually do what people want.
glloyd
Rising Star
Posts: 1,652
Thanks: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: FTTP Trials and Bad Customer Service

I'm not at all surprised by all the delays. I've spoken to several long serving experience engineers who are being offered redundancy packages whilst at the same time BT are recruiting new engineers. It's seems like they want to get rid of the more expensive experienced engineers who know  what they are doing and replace them with cheaper learners.