OTA2 Update for November 2014

At the end of November 2014 the number of unbundled lines stands at 9.52 million. There are 5.64 million WLR lines and the number of telephone numbers using CPS is 2.16 million.

Service Level Agreements and Guarantees

Following the process established by Ofcom’s Fixed Access Market Review (FAMR), an initial list of eight industry requests for review and amendment of SLA/SLG covering Copper/NGA were submitted in April to close mid-October. At this point a number of negotiations had not been concluded and both CPs and Openreach agreed to extend discussions to the end-November.

There have been weekly meetings between all parties regarding the over-arching programme. Discussions were generally constructive throughout the process.

At the conclusion of the formal process the status is as follows:

Copper-GEA SLA/SLG Proposal

SLA Status

SLG Status

SLA/SLG 1A – Appointment Availability Target of 6 working days

No agreement within timescale. Progressing bilaterally. 

NA

SLA/SLG 1B – Forecasting regime and linkage to SLGs

NA

No agreement reached

SLA/SLG 2  - Providing a Contractually Committed Date [CCD] within a maximum timescale

Agreed

Agreed

SLA/SLG 3 – Provision of Non-Appointed orders within a maximum timescale

Agreed

No agreement reached

SLA/SLG 4 - Parity of payments: End-user & Openreach Missed Appointments

NA

Agreed

SLA/SLG 5 - Higher SLG payments when Care Level 3 & 4 SLA is not met

NA

Agreed

SLA/SLG 7 – Enhanced Service Credit mechanism for ELF & DoAs

Agreed

NA

SLA/SLG 8 - Cablelink

Agreed

Agreed

SLA/SLG 9 – Availability of Openreach provided AC and DC power serving co-mingling facility and for subsequent remedial work

Agreed

Agreed

The only impasse has been with respect to the link of forecasting to the payment of SLGs, whereby a link does exist today and some CPs wish to have this link removed. This impasse has prevented reaching any level of agreement in two areas of SLG negotiation. OTA2 does not, however, see any grounds to refer these to Ofcom.

Three additional SLA/SLG proposals have subsequently been made; One from Sky and two from Openreach. One has subsequently been withdrawn and another agreed.

Ethernet CPs also submitted a set of proposals for SLA/SLG discussions on EAD however these were subsequently ceased as a parallel set of discussions had been initiated via the Ethernet Products and Commercial Group.

Consumer Switching

What is the Industry task set by Ofcom?

  • By June 2015, to implement a single Harmonised Gaining Provider-led NoT (Notice of Transfer) Switching Process for any consumers intending to switch their voice and/or broadband services to a new Service Provider. The biggest challenge is to replace the Losing Provider-led MAC-based process currently used to switch broadband-only services with the Gaining Provider-led NoT Switching process

What’s been achieved so far?

  • Specific focus has been directed towards ensuring all the Wholesalers have plans in place to start deploying elements of the new ‘harmonised’ process well before the target cutover (June’15). This part of the programme is progressing well with some key elements already deployed by Openreach & BT Wholesale.
  • Beyond Jan’15, the focus will turn towards getting the downstream Retailer & Reseller communities to complete their own preparations & to participate in comprehensive end-to-end testing well ahead of June’15 as this will help to materially mitigate any risk of issues arising at cutover.

OTA2 Tasks

All of the original tasks have now been closed with the exception of the work on Early Life Failures (ELFs).

The programme has been very successful in delivering tangible benefits, saving thousands of unnecessary engineering visits, aiding more accurate provisions and improving customer experience.

Given this success, we are now working with Openreach and Industry on new tasks to streamline processes to the benefit of Customers.

New OTA2 Tasks

Fast Recovery, The T2R (Trouble to Repair) analysis is being further developed to show more granularity of issues. Once agreed will be shared with CP’s

Communication, CP’s and Openreach were canvassed for most immediate problems. The total list was then reduced to 5 key tasks. Detailed discussions were held with Openreach on potential cause and opportunity and an initial summary review was held with CP’s. Detailed reviews and task setting are now in progress with CP’s and Openreach.

  • Cancellation of appointment by Openreach for New Provide. Customer communications and expectation.
  • Customer expectation around new site and line plant delays
  • Management of customer address changes during CP transfer
  • Problems of informing customers when an appointment has been missed (by either Openreach or the customer)
  • Improvement in the quality, structure and format of the fault information that CPs give Openreach based on the discussion with the customers

MBORC Transparency

Process has been launched. A working group meeting has been set up for the 18th December to discuss implementation local MBORC and next steps.

Reduce Consumer Harm

Ofcom-sponsored (& OTA2-led) programme aimed at reducing Consumer complaints due to Erroneous Landline Transfers (ELTs)

Following a lengthy programme of exhaustive root cause analysis and ‘process improvement’ workshops, the volume of ELT complaints continues to reduce each month

Number Porting (Fixed Line)

  • Work on-going to establish a new Performance Measurements Dashboard
  • Ongoing work to re-engineer various elements of a number porting process which has not evolved to take account of modern day demands (e.g. Out of Hours porting) & next generation technologies (e.g. Porting in IP world)

Service Levels

Copper Repair: Copper repair performance (LLU & WLR) has started to track a deteriorating trend in recent weeks with ‘on time repair’ dropping back to 70% in October.

Copper Provision: Openreach FAD (First Available Date) performance nationally, is stable averaging 9.3 working days during Nov’14 (vs backstop SLA of 12 working days).

Our KPI charts show current performance levels.

Ethernet Services

Service provision remains the area for most concern for CPs. Openreach are signalling that work stack fluidity is becoming a major problem, however the issues surrounding fluidity are not simple and this will require a significant level of work to unpick and resolve.

DOJ (Differentiated Order Journey) work continues with the proposed tail exchanges being shared with CPs. There are a number of questions surrounding the operation of the trial which CPs are very keen to resolve before the trial kicks off in earnest in January. In addition there is the need to resolve the shape of any future SLA/SLG regimen.

OTA2 will continue to focus on:

  • Business Market Service Improvement Programme
  • OTA2 Tasks on Communication.
  • ELF Reduction Programme
  • Address Data Matching Integrity issues
  • WLR/LLU Process development
  • Ethernet Process Development
  • Ethernet Strategic Systems review
  • Strategic Review of Consumer Switching
  • Erroneous Fixed Line Transfers activity
  • Urgent Service Restoration Process
  • Fixed Line Number Porting - Improvements
  • Service levels (LLU/WLR/Ethernet)
  • Plan & Build Performance Issues

 




Rod Smith