OTA2 Update for November 2016

At the end of November 2016, the number of unbundled lines stands at 9.85 million. There are 4.57 million WLR lines and the number of telephone numbers using CPS is 1.87 million

The following is an update on the principle areas of project activity being led by OTA2.

Ethernet EAD - SLA/SLG Work stream

Following a dialogue between Openreach, CPs and OTA2 it has been agreed to split the original EAD negotiations into two parts. The first part, to discuss the SLG measures, started on 16 September 2016. There are three elements under discussion; the removal of Openreach deemed consent, whether there are any legitimate circumstances where Openreach can seek CP agreement to a CCD change and the concept of the SLG ensuring a circuit is “usable” i.e. working, fully documented and delivered to the correct location.  Good progress has been made on all aspects except for changing the CCD. Whilst CPs accept Openreach can approach at CP bi-laterally to seek a CCD date change industry is highly reluctant to agree a formalised process given their prior experience of how Deemed Consent was applied.
The second part of the negotiation will cover the quantum and will start in January 2017, subject to reasonable progress on the measures. OTA2 is not anticipating any obstacles to a January start date. Both elements will run for up to 6 months under the governance of the BCMR. 

Service Management Forum (SMF)

A restructuring of the SMF has created space for CPs and Openreach to look more critically at service improvement programmes and targeted initiatives. The analysis of metrics has now been moved to the interim update calls which has proved more effective in understanding specific service performance issues.

The next face to face SMF meeting in December will conduct a ‘deep dive’ review into FTTC Early Life Failures (ELF) especially around the self-install order type.

Openreach KPI Assurance

Following an approach to the OTA2 from Ofcom, the OTA2 and EAO (Equivalence of Access Office) have embarked on a joint initiative to validate a small number of the KPIs used by Openreach to  report their operational performance to Industry .

The first KPI selected for review was Missed Appointments (as presented to the Industry Service Management Forum, SMF) and we are pleased to confirm that, following completion of our  5-stage assurance process, this KPI report provides an accurate/true account of  Openreach Missed Appointments performance.
The next KPI to be assessed is Ethernet Missed Appointments.

CFPCG (Copper & Fibre Products Commercial Group)

Industry continue to review the Openreach proposal to reduce what is known  as the target margin for FTTC by 3dB to increase speed on certain lines. Further trials are planned to demonstrate to CPs that universal introduction will not introduce any adverse effects. The request by CPs to ‘opt in or out’ is considered unnecessary by Openreach hence the proposal of a wider trial.  
Following discussions at the last CFPCG Openreach have now come back with a proposal to further develop the tactical process for offering Saturday as an option for self-install FTTC orders where capacity can be made available. This has been received well and will be fast tracked through the normal industry processes.

Ethernet Service

Ethernet service delivery remains challenging with protracted lead times and service uncertainty still affecting CPs plans. We await the anticipated improvements from the many improvement projects to begin to show in the service performance KPIs, but recognise that the long lead time nature of the EAD product creates a lag in this coming through.

Dark Fibre

A very good level of industry engagement and interaction has continued with the development of the DFA Reference Offer. The Final reference offer was published 30 November 2016.

Passives Industry Working Group

Trialling of different working practices for CPs to Survey/ Plan /Build and enable their own works are continuing. This is raising some interesting challenges around finding accredited operatives or getting them accredited, but generally, the ability for CPs to operate more efficiently is seen as a good thing.

Openreach are continuing to develop the system view of line plant maps to enable CPs to plan from a screen based map rather than have to request paper records.

Number Porting

Work continues to improve Number Porting processes at both a Tactical & Strategic level.
On the tactical front, there remain a number of challenges which the Industry Stakeholder group continue to focus on.

One of the more pressing tasks, currently, is to establish a robust process for restoring service to a ‘ported’ number whenever it fails. This type of fault invariably requires 2 or 3 CPs to work in a co-ordinated manner, in short order, and possibly out of hours.

On the strategic front, the new Executive Steering Group are meeting for the 2nd time in December 2016 & will be evaluating the various strategic building blocks which will be needed to deliver a new target operating model in 3-5yrs time.

Service Levels

Copper & Fibre Provision

Openreach FAD (First Available Date) performance nationally, has been averaging 8-9 working days for Copper and NGA Fibre, during the week ending 28 November 2016 (vs backstop SLA of 12 working days).

Copper Repair

LLU and WLR ‘on time repair’ performance has been tracking an improving trend, achieving 81% and 73% respectively, for week ending 21 October 2016.

OTA2 will continue to focus on:

  • OTA2 Tasks on Communication.
  • ELF Reduction Programme
  • Address Data Matching Integrity issues
  • WLR/LLU Process Development
  • Ethernet Process Development
  • Ethernet Strategic Systems Review
  • Consumer Switching Industry Improvement Programme
  • Urgent Service Restoration Process
  • Fixed Line Number Porting - Improvements
  • Service Levels (LLU/WLR/Ethernet)
  • Infrastructure Service improvement programme
  • KPI Assurance



Rod Smith