NBN creates dedicated churn team to resolve customer issues

The company says it is working through issues as quickly as it can.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor

As the rollout of the NBN has progressed, customers have increasingly taken to social media to vent their frustration at the company charged with deploying the National Broadband Network across Australia.

On Monday, Aussie Broadband told ZDNet it was escalating 30 percent of its HFC connections to NBN.

"We are working closely with NBN Co to improve this figure," acting managing director John Reisinger said.

In response, NBN said it was processing orders as quickly as it could, and was creating a new team to investigate the issues.

"We acknowledge there have been some delays in the HFC rollout due to high end-user demand and the complexity involved in connecting some premises to the NBN HFC network," an NBN spokesperson said.

"With respect to churn, in some cases this is taking longer than we would like. In some instances, this has been exacerbated by previous tenants taking the NTD with them when they leave the premises.

"We have stood up a dedicated team to resolve churn orders as quickly as possible and identify root cause for ongoing improvement."

Earlier on Tuesday, Communications Minister Mitch Fifield directed ACMA to conduct research into customer experiences on the NBN.

"21 industry participants including retailers, wholesale providers, and NBN Co Ltd will receive notices seeking a range of data on issues such as fault handling, connection timeframes, appointment keeping, telephone number porting, and more," Fifield said.

"This information will be used to identify where customer issues most commonly arise and how those issues can be either avoided or resolved more quickly. It will also help reduce the passing of customer complaints between retailers and NBN."

Vodafone announced on Tuesday it would be using a modem with an LTE connection that would allow customers to use a 12/1Mbps mobile connection while waiting to be connected to the NBN, or in the event of an outage.

In May, the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) announced NBN-related complaints had risen by 118 percent year on year, although this increase was lower than the increase in the network's footprint.

NBN said at the time that when taking into account the number of new premises activated, its complaints actually fell by 30 percent since the most recent half-year period -- though it acknowledged it could do more to improve customer service.

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