Broadband News

Openreach performance slipping again?

While there is a sense that Openreach should be given some slack due to the very wet summer and ongoing wet weather, it is worrying to see that people are posting on our forums with telephone provision dates that are already in 2013. This can mean that people due to move home in December may be several weeks without a telephone line, and for many it is the lack of broadband that is more important.

Openreach only recently removed its 'Matters Beyond Our Control' order that had impacted work over the summer, but looking at the Telecommunications Adjudicator graphs for the period up to 6th November 2012, it looks like things have not really improved, but are on a steady trend down over the summer and into the autumn.

Office of Telecommunications Adjudicator Performance Metrics for Openreach
Click image for larger version

Tales of half completed FTTC installs, with them then not being completed for a week or two are appearing, plus a rise in complaints about how an install was carried out. Of course this is largely anecdotal, as people tend to complain only when things go wrong, but based on our experience the volumes appear higher than normal.

With 2013 and 2014 set to be a very busy year for Openreach, we hope that new staff will quickly get into the swing of things and that things like fault repairs and installing new connections will not be sidelined in the race for coverage statistics.

Have you been given a very distant connection date for phone or broadband, or a fault repair is taking weeks, then do give a few details in our comments. Conversely if you have had a case where an Openreach engineer has provided outstanding service do speak up as well.

Literally as we were about to press publish on this news item we found out that Openreach has issued a new MBORC (Matters Beyond Our Reasonable Control) notice, covering: Coventry, Derby/Nottingham, Exeter, Humber, Newport/Worcester, North Wales, Stoke/Chester, Swansea, Swindon, Taunton and Truro. The problem being the flooding and continued rain, that is restricting access to infrastructure and of course flooding much of the underground chambers/ducting.


No complaints about the openreach engineers, they are great. Its the infrastructure that is such high maintenance.

  • cyberdoyle
  • over 8 years ago

Well I ordered BT Infinity on Monday and they are due to come out to install next Wednesday so if they can keep that date despite what is going on I'll be impressed!

  • GMAN99
  • over 8 years ago

I had ordered Sky Fibre Unlimited Pro two weeks ago and the installation was booked for 28/11 for a new phone line and FTTC.
The engineer was reluctant to do anything, filed a lazy report that mentioned the street had to be dug up and called for an Underground engineer.
The next day, without warning an UG engineer shows up, spends a few hours and gets the land-line working without a lot of trouble and can also, technically, install my FTTC because he does these installs too.
Suffice to say, his control unit wouldn't let him and now my FTTC is booked for 7th January 2013.

  • Saltank
  • over 8 years ago

I suspect a lack of manpower.

  • otester
  • over 8 years ago

Ok i ordered my internet on the 1st November, with Plusnet, i have a line/socket in my living room but its not active, so I'm given a date of 11th December for an engineer to do my line activation, then on top i have to wait another 5-7 days for my broadband to be activated on the line? so that's looking at about 7 weeks!!! I think its outrageous, 7 weeks... nearly 2 moths to get the internet? Reasonable..? no.

  • intnetinit
  • over 8 years ago

There was lots of PR earlier this year (and even more the previous year) about substantial quantities of Openreach tehnician jobs for ex-Forces folk.

Was there more to it than PR?

  • c_j_
  • over 8 years ago

Hi c_j_. Lots of 'ex-forces' types got taken on. The problem is that these bods are single skilled, FTTC install only. The body of contractors doing line and FTTC installs are also very limited skills wise. Anything vaguely tricky, and they bin the job, adding to an already high workload for the multi skilled engineers. Bad weather on top, a vicious circle.Openreach need to employ and fully train more engineers, but this takes time.

  • Zarjaz
  • over 8 years ago

^ Just don't answer the door with a towel on your head xD

  • otester
  • over 8 years ago

Ordered broadband plus TV package in November 2012 and have been given a date for middle (13th) Jan 2013. Tis is Caterham in Surrey

  • wmiked
  • over 8 years ago

Ordered FTTC on 8th Nov, given 3rd Dec (today) 0800-1300. Engineer phoned 0815 to say was on his way. In at 0830, out at 0845, all setup and online @ 60 mbps from 4 mbps. Excellent. (Plusnet)

  • diggsy
  • over 8 years ago

I had exactly the same experience as diggsy, ordered FTTC Infinity 2 on an existing line with MAC code to migrate from ADSL (Demon 4Mbps). Everything worked like clockwork, homehub arrived on time (not using it but hey ho) and engineer arrived spot on time - took 10 minutes to switch lines at the cab and all done. Now have an average 72/17Mbps connection - very happy. Ordered on 24th November, fully active 14 November.

  • gmegson
  • over 8 years ago

Ordered phone and Infiniti package 22 October Delayed ordering until after vacation. Phone switched 6 November, but Broadband not scheduled until 17 December. Both neighbours ordered as soon as available (end September) and were up and running in days.

  • chrissuk2000
  • over 8 years ago

Phone and broadband dead since 22:30 Thursday 22nd November, seemingly due to a lightning strike. Still waiting. Was told it was a fault with the wiring in a distribution cabinet and that it would be fixed today, but as of 16:00 today (3rd December) it's still not working. Other properties in village also off.

  • csimon
  • over 8 years ago

Nothing but praise here. Had a new install 30th Oct, engineer arrived and installed hub and the open reach box and all worked splendidly. Had a connection issue a week later and was told it couldn't be sorted for 3 working days, but the local open reach engineer contacted me the next day and sorted it by the end of the day. Excellent service all round here in Wellington, Somerset!

  • WeeManMike
  • over 7 years ago

Two no shows for me from Openreach - they didn't even bother to call as per their own published procedures to let me know that it would be a no show.

I'd be interested in what percentage of no shows or issues are with BT Retail customers and the same for other providers.

  • KarlAustin
  • over 7 years ago

Well they said they'd come today between 8am and 1 and turned up at 8.20, done by 8.50

Estimated me at 35Mbps down 6up, left me with 80Mbps down and 15 up

He was a contractor and did a decent job

  • GMAN99
  • over 7 years ago

As of 13:00 today (7th December), phone & internet still dead since 22:30 22nd November. Have had 2 promised fix dates but these have both passed. It seems Openreach is prioritising new provisions over faults.

  • csimon
  • over 7 years ago

More bad news from Plusnet regarding BT Openreach:
It is necessary to declare MBORC in a further two areas, for repair only, with effect from 14:00 today, 7th December 2012.

Central Downs and East Downs.

In these areas, the extremely high rainfall and some flooding has severely restricted access to our network apparatus and our underground
infrastructure has been heavily impacted.

  • GeorgeB
  • over 7 years ago

May fault is still outstanding. There was an appointment booked for two days ago but Openrech failed to turn up. Have been told that the next available slot is 27th December. That will mean no phone and internet for 5 weeks, and over Christmas too, simply becuase Openreach cannot come out to replace a master socket. My provider seems to be helpless, there is no escalation procedure, all that can bedone is to go to the end of the queue again on the computer system.

  • csimon
  • over 7 years ago

More bad news from Openreach:
This message is regrettably to declare MBORC on a further 4 areas with effect from 08:00 today 27th December 2012

Areas now declared:-
Birmingham/Black Country
NE Scotland
West London
Mid Wales/Shrewsbury
North London
South Yorkshire
West Downs
Central Downs
North Wales

  • GeorgeB
  • over 7 years ago

My fault has been fixed today, after 5 weeks and 2 missed appointments!

  • csimon
  • over 7 years ago

Still more bad news from Openreach:
Due to the prevailing adverse conditions, it is necessary to declare MBORC for repair activities on a further 4 areas, with effect from 08:00 today, 2 January 2013, as listed below:-

Hemel Hempstead

When will it end?

  • GeorgeB
  • over 7 years ago

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