OTA2 Update for September 2017

At the end of September 2017, the number of unbundled lines stands at 9.80 million. There are 4.45 million WLR lines and the number of telephone numbers using CPS is 1.81 million.

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

Ethernet EAD -SLA/SLG Work Stream

Progress has been made regarding all parties developing their own understanding of the cost impact of Openreach failure. A key element affecting any quantum is reaching a common view of the impact of transferring non-customer Deemed Consent from the CP clock to Openreach. This work is still ongoing and has unfortunately not yet reached its conclusion.

Work on the impact of transferring non-customer Deemed Consent to the Openreach clock continued over the summer but has yet to conclude thus, frustrating progress. Negotiations recommenced on 11 September 2017 but due to the delay associated with the analysis of deemed consent are unlikely to conclude within the agreed timescales.

Service Management Forum (SMF)

At the last SMF there was a discussion around the Openreach management of twitter. The debate surrounds how Openreach should respond to potential vulnerable customers via twitter. There are mixed views; some arguing that Openreach should not respond or even run a twitter system whereas others are open minded to collaborating with Openreach on how best to respond.

The new Openreach service targets were examined in more detail. Concerns from some CPs remain around the more specific targets of product, L2C, T2R etc. A CP paper was sent to Openreach for comment. At the meeting Openreach recognised that next year they should have a more collaborative engagement but were not willing to retrospectively review their current ambition. At least one CP was disappointed with this and wished to review their position.

Openreach KPI Assurance

A joint OTA2/EAO (Equivalence of Access Office) team are currently auditing one the more important KPIs which Openreach currently share with CPs as a basis for driving actions for improvement: FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet), Self-Install, ELFs (Early Life Failures).

This is the third in a series of such KPI audits originally commissioned by the OTA2 Executive and which is fully supported by Openreach.

CFPCG (Copper & Fibre Products Commercial Group)

Openreach previously informed industry that a connectivity quality problem with its later style of MDF blocks had been identified which could be causing intermittent broadband performance on some customer lines. Further updates were given on how the rectification was progressing and how future charges would be managed. Some CPs have registered their concerns of the rationale of the date to which payments will be refunded.

Updates were given on the Long reach VDSL and Customer engagement consultations which are likely to be followed up by further meetings.

Positives results were also shared around the PCP only prove of concept that aims to reduce failures on new provisions. Further analysis will be shared at next meeting.

Ethernet Service & Dark Fibre

Service delivery remains good with the positive trends on the performance measures holding up. Order validation within the SLA is a challenging area which had seen increased effort being applied by Openreach however, recent ECO-x failures have exhaserbated the problem and a renewed effort is expected from Openreach service to get control.

EMP

ESTG – Reviewed progress and direction of the programme – Reviewed the first stage of a reimagined Ethernet delivery journey and discussed how best to engage CPs with this new strategic programme.

IWG – Deep dive into the complexity of appointing and modelling how each of the outcomes can be messaged back to CPs.

All work on the Dark Fibre Access product has been suspended following the CAT court judgement. No further activity is expected until the full details of the tribunal decision are understood.

Passives Industry Working Group

Openreach shared the outline of the provision journey and a supporting KCI structure. This is good work on setting up a more formal, structured set of processes to support the product. There remains a challenge of how do we systemise this work make the product more scaleable.

CPs are reporting some major challenges in the information flow surrounding work sent to Openreach contractors. Whilst this is an issue for more than the DPA product (Ethernet also has issues) the impact for the DPA community is very significant and will be an impediment to moving to scale deployments. OTA will be reviewing with the relevant Openreach service owners.

Number Porting

The Number Port Executive Steering Group is now well established with healthy support being provided by a good cross-section of Industry Representatives.

Currently, there are 2 areas of focus:

Tactical Improvement
The Steering Group are progressing the introduction of a new 'Industry Self-Governance Regime' to which all CPs will be automatically enrolled with the aim of improving process compliance across the board.

The Steering Group are planning to introduce a new 'Industry Self-Governance Regime' with strict 'Terms of Reference' which all CPs will be invited to recognise and over time improve performance.

Strategic Transformation
The Steering group continue to develop requirements for a new ‘fit for purpose’ operating model which addresses the weaknesses of the current model AND meets future needs.

Consumer Switching Industry Forum (CSIF)

New Consumer Switching Best Practice Guide
This guide has now been published (via the OTA2 web-site) and provides comprehensive & up-to-date guidance in all matters relating to Consumer Switching.

The guide brings together a vast array of important information, which, hitherto, could only be obtained by searching various web-sites (e.g. Ofcom, Openreach, OTA2).

Going forward, the guide will be updated in line with any new requirements arising from Ofcom's Statement in respect of their recently completed 'Review of General Conditions'.

Supplier of Last Resort (SOLR)
The Consumer Switching Industry Forum (CSIF) have developed a guide which sets out the key stages which need to be undertaken by a CP (e.g. the wholesaler) if one of their resellers is forced to close down (e.g. insolvency, contract breach) at relatively short notice. Once the SOLR process is triggered, the headline objective thereafter, is to ensure there is minimal (if any) service disruption to end users, with particular emphasis on protection for vulnerable consumers.

The latest review of the draft guide has highlighted the need for some adjustments to be made before the guide can be published.

Service Levels

Copper & Fibre Provision
Openreach FAD (First Available Date) performance nationally, has been averaging 8.8 & 7.5 working days for Copper and Fibre installations respectively, over the 5-day period ending 25 September 2017 (vs backstop SLA of 12 working days).

Copper Repair
LLU and WLR ‘on time repair’ performance has been very stable, achieving 82% and 78% respectively, for week ending 18 August 2017.

OTA2 will continue to focus on:

  • 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