A broadband customer worked from home. She was moving in three weeks’ time and notified her provider so they could activate internet services at her new address. She voiced concerns about her service being disrupted and her provider assured her that her internet would be up and running at her new address on moving day.
Several weeks after moving in, she had no internet. Over numerous phone calls, her retail service provider assured her that a technician from the wholesale provider would arrive the next day to connect her. This meant the customer had to drive to a family member’s house each day with her work gear so she could use their internet. She also missed work while waiting for technicians to arrive. As she lived in a rural location, mobile coverage was patchy, so it was unreliable to hotspot her phone for work video calls.
The customer contacted TDR to complain about the installation delay and the poor customer service that she received. She noted that she had been financially impacted due to the travel required for her to work at a relative’s place, and she talked about the stress that the hours of phone calls and uncertainty had caused her. She said the retail service provider and wholesale provider were blaming each other for the delays.
TDR passed the details of the complaint on to the customer’s retail service provider. They explained that initial checks indicated that there was a suitable connection at her new address so they anticipated this could be completed as a standard relocation, not requiring a technician. An issue arose as another customer had an active account for this address. Until the previous occupant disconnected their connection, the new occupant could not be connected. The retail service provider began the abandonment process, requesting the wholesale provider to disconnect the previous occupant so the customer could be connected at her new address. This request took a week to action.
A series of further delays then ensued. The job was placed on a wait list and when a technician was available several days later, an issue with the cable was uncovered. They then had to wait for the repair work to be undertaken. When the customer was finally connected, her connection kept dropping out. She experienced a faulty installation. Throughout the relocation process, her retail provider and the wholesale provider communicated back and forth, and some miscommunications occurred adding to the delays. By the time the issue was resolved, the customer was without internet access for a month. Her retail service provider acknowledged that being without service for such a long period was not acceptable, despite many of the delays being outside their control. They offered the customer a credit to the value of six months service for the inconvenience. At this point, the customer did not accept the offer and sought $3000 compensation.
TDR began to assist by facilitating communication between the two parties and sharing information. Both the provider and customer expressed their wish to resolve the matter. The customer noted that she was willing to accept the previous offer of six months credit and close the complaint, should the offer still stand. The provider confirmed that it was. The provider expressed that whatever the reason for the delays in getting the service working, the experience was not what anyone would have wanted, and for that reason the provider was happy to maintain the account credit offer. A settlement was reached, and the complaint was resolved.