Openreach is attempting to try and gather some information on the performance of its engineering staff who visit customers to install telephone lines and broadband services with a limited trial in a couple of busy locations where the customer is left with a feedback card to fill in and score the visit and work done.
The trial is optional, so the retail broadband providers and telephone companies will have a choice whether to have their customers taking part, hopefully all will be on board in this attempt to measure the quality of delivery at the sharp end of Openreach.
The areas will be the Merseyside area, North/East London and West/Central London, which will give performance on Openreach, Kelly's and Quinn's. Only telephone line installs, repairs and fibre installs that require the engineer to visit a property are included, self-install FTTC is not part of the feedback trial.
The trial information (providers have until 20th August 2014 to opt-in) indicates it will run until the end of September 2014 and customers will be left a feedback card, with the engineers being told via their tablet/phone which jobs need a card leaving. The feedback card includes a telephone number for people to report an issue for up to 3 days after the visit, where the help desk will try to resolve the issue or arrange another engineer visit to fix the problem.
The main issue we foresee is that engineers will be aware of which cards they are going to leave a card on and thus a small number may put more effort into those, offering the level of service we see people complaining about to the other jobs. Hopefully some form of secret shopper system will be used to ensure that it is not a case of better performance for the few weeks of the trial and only those providers taking part.