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Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Sun 27-Nov-16 21:51:24
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Why I have left Plusnet


[link to this post]
 
I’d been with Plusnet for 15 years; first on dial-up, then ADSL and finally FTTC. During that time Plusnet has changed out of all recognition. They used to be one of the ISPs of choice for the more technically advanced users, not far short of Andrews and Arnold and certainly on a par with Zen but a little cheaper than either of them. Now their ratings are heading towards Sky and TalkTalk (see thinkbroadband ratings).

So what do I want from an ISP? Certainly providing a reliable, quick connection is a major factor; but that’s not the whole story, there are two other considerations. Firstly things never stay the same in this marketplace so how well do they rise to challenges? Secondly at some point something will go wrong so how well do they respond to issues?

Having been heavily committed to the Plusnet Community (where I have the second highest post count of any user) and other forums I think I’ve got a good overview of how things are in the world of Plusnet so let’s take a look at what’s been happening. Some of these affected me directly but all influenced my opinion on the soundness of Plusnet as my choice of ISP.

IPv6

Many people think of IPv6 as a new version of the internet. It’s not new – IPv6 has been around for over 20 years and it’s only since the pool of IPv4 addresses ran out that many providers have done anything about it. Back in 2011 Plusnet had developed and internally tested of what was needed for IPv6 and started a trial with around 20 users. A further trial started in 2013. This looked good and it appeared Plusnet was all set to steal a march on all the other large ISPs. So what’s happened since then?
  • When the bng gateways were introduced it was found IPv6 didn’t work properly on them (users only get their correct address when they managed to hit an ag gateway).
  • In the last year Plusnet have been moving users to their “new” WBMC Dedicated network. Why IPv6 wasn’t a key requirement of this I fail to understand.
  • Recently it’s been announced that the ag gateways are being retired – see
  • https://community.plus.net/t5/IPv6-Trial/PSA-AG-Gate...
In the meantime Sky and BT have made IPv6 available to all their users (specialist ISP Andrews and Arnold has been providing IPv6 connections to all their users for around 15 years). All requests for information about Plusnet’s IPv6 plans are rebuffed.

Secure email

Users have been requesting secure email for many years and Plusnet had been promising its coming for just as long. Late 2014 a selected number of users were told how they could configure their email to use SSL/TLS on their outgoing mail so it looked like Plusnet might be getting there. Since then nothing and all requests for an indication of when it might be available get a non-committal response (incidentally the outgoing secure email server is still there – I was using it up to the day I left).

New accounts system

For at least 8 years we’ve been told about a new accounts system that will address many of the issues that there are with the current system and there’s no sign that this will ever become a reality (I suspect that there may have been more than one rip it up start again). In the meantime there are these issues/needed improvements:
  • Ability to select/change billing date
  • Correction/cancellation of Direct Debit if user contacts Plusnet immediately on receipt of notification email
  • Display contract end date
  • Discounts maximum of 12 months when contracts can be 18
  • Emailed statements or availability of pdf downloads
  • Single account for multiple lines
  • and many more…
New Network

The project to move from the current WBMC Shared to WBMC Dedicated has had issues. Around July time there were increasing numbers of complaints about packet loss and increased latency. It took far too long for the issue to be recognised and resolved and for some time they were continuing to move people across to the new network when it was known there were issues. Recently there have been packet loss reports again while they are still moving people across at a high rate.

Webmail and mail servers

Every few years, big issues emerge with the performance of the mail platform and recently it has been really bad. The current large topic running on these forums (“Webmail - Extremely Slow”) was started in May and they are now indicating a solution early December. At first the recommendation was to use an email client, but recently those using a client are also seeing issues.

Communicating with Plusnet

When I joined Plusnet calls were always answered in a reasonable time and for lower priority issues or questions you could raise a ticket. Most tickets were responded to within a few hours. Over time the wait times on the phones got worse and the ticket times did the same. When challenged we were promised it would improve (opening the Leeds office was supposed to make a big difference) – but it never has. Now tickets have been all but killed off and users are forced to wait either for the phone or the chat system. People have lives to live. For a simple request which they are happy to wait a day or so for an answer the ticket system was perfect; they don’t want to be hanging on the phone listening to over-loud noisic, or waiting for chat.

For the last year or so, wait times on both the phones and chat have been totally unacceptable. This is coupled with the quality of the support when you do get through often being below acceptable levels. One thing I have noticed in recent months is a significant increase in the number of times the Help Team, when responding to complaints on the community forums, have had to apologise and feed back to CSC managers. Increasingly this is not a failure to understand or deal with an issue, but getting it completely wrong.

Ever since the chat system has been introduced it has been known that ad blockers can stop it working. It would be so simple to put something on the page to pre-warn users that they needed to disable ad blockers if chat doesn’t work and apparently this has been pushed back but it’s taking a ridiculously long time for something to be done.

The standard of some of the automated emails from Plusnet is poor as well and this illustrates another issue: even when it is known and acknowledged that communications sent to customers by Plusnet need tweaking it doesn’t get done; even if this would reduce the number of support requests. The prime example of this is the email send out on a user’s billing date when they have ordered an upgrade from ADSL to Fibre. They get an email saying “Your broadband product change is complete” which any reasonable person would interpret as they should now be enjoying the higher speeds – it means no such thing, they still have to wait for the engineer to connect them to the fibre cabinet which could be a couple of weeks later. We have seen scores of people posting about this over many, many months. Apparently the Help Team has fed back on this many times but nothing gets done. It would be so simple to change the email to say something like “Your account has been changed ready for your upgrade to fibre. You will be advised separately when this will happen”.

Technical knowledge of Plusnet

I have concerns that the breadth of technical knowledge within Plusnet isn’t that great; there are a few people within Plusnet I have great respect for, but many of the excellent people who I have had dealings with over the years have now left. This really came home to me three years ago when I moved to my current house.

I had been on Max Premium on 20CN (8Mbps down, 832Kbps up) in two previous homes with no issues. On moving here I kept getting disconnections every time the phone rang for an incoming call. I had several engineer visits who confirmed the issue (including one who saw the issue when connecting to my line directly inside the exchange), but no resolution. Eventually I contacted AAISP with a view to migrating to them under their “We’ll fix your line” guarantee (see http://aaisp.net/broadband-trial.html). They immediately told me this was a known issue with Max Premium on Marconi 20CN exchange equipment and they’d get me moved across to different equipment. I fed that back to Plusnet who came back, saying no alternative was available and offered to downgrade me to standard ADSL Max. This did cure the disconnections. On contacting AAISP again to say no alternative was available they checked my exchange and said “oh yes it is”. Finally Plusnet got my line moved and put back on Max Premium and all was well.

So the one significant technical line issue I’ve had over the years was solved by me getting the necessary information from another ISP and telling Plusnet what needed doing!

Orders System

I’ve lost count of the number of posts I’ve seen where new users have placed orders and some time if not weeks later they are wondering when they’ll be moved across. When they contact Plusnet it’s found that the order from Plusnet to their suppliers failed and it hadn’t been picked up. Again this points to issues with systems not being addressed when it would reduce customer dissatisfaction and reduce support requests.

Pro Add-on

The Pro add-on was introduced before any of the genuine unlimited accounts were introduced. On the old accounts it did make a difference and was worth users paying the extra. On Unlimited accounts it is pretty pointless as 99.9% of the time (and acknowledged as such by Plusnet: see message 6 from Chris on https://community.plus.net/t5/Broadband/ADSL-Max-Pro... which was posted three years ago. Yet for years they continue to offer it to users on Unlimited accounts when the principal affect was to make the user £5 per month poorer with no improvement to the broadband (and in some cases it made things worse).

Fibre Product Range

For a long time they offered the choice of 40/20 (Fibre or 80/20. The 40/20 made no sense as they still had to pay OpenReach the same amount as 80/20. They then stopped that, but instead of offering the standard 40/10 they offer 40/2 – the reason seems to be that their rival who they want to compete with (TalkTalk) has that as their entry fibre product. Recently they’ve downgraded all the people who were on 40/20 Unlimited to 55/10.

We see numerous posts from people who have migrated in from other ISPs where they were on 40/10 and are surprised to find their upload is reduced to a fifth of what is was – the upload speed on Unlimited Fibre is well hidden! To add to this madness Plusnet will not sell Unlimited Fibre Extra to people who cannot sync above 40 – the only choice people whose download speed is limited have is to go to another ISP such as BT. Offering a choice of 40/2, 55/10 and 80/20 would offer a perfectly balanced portfolio which is why OpenReach introduced 55/10 in the first place.

Conclusion

When I joined Plusnet they didn’t advertise at all – they didn’t have to. They enjoyed steady growth through word of mouth and the referrals system. When they were bought by BT the whole approach changed. BT itself was still charging the premium prices to its users and wanted a way to compete on price with Sky and TalkTalk.

It is now apparent that the over-riding aim of Plusnet’s management is to gain customers which is why we now see frequent adverts, stunts like the sponsorship of Big Brother and a continuous stream of introductory offers (usually with cashback) to match those of TalkTalk. All of this has produced a steady stream of new signups at a faster rate than they’ve grown the support department. The inevitable consequence has been the decline in support as we’ve seen. The result has been a lot of users who bitterly regret coming to Plusnet have suffered the consequences of the poor support and leave again at the first opportunity. Not only are they permanently lost but they will also put the word around about their experience.

The changed approach has also had other consequences:
  • It has changed the type of users that Plusnet attracts. They now appeal to those who are solely out for the cheapest deal and still expect first class support; they will show no loyalty at all and will leave again as soon as they are out of contract and a better offer is available.
  • The most likely time for users to need support is when they join or upgrade to FTTC from ADSL. The current strategy means that there will continue to be high demands for support so I cannot see any prospect of a return to the high levels of service we saw in the past.
  • Developers are continually engaged preparing for new campaigns and small tweaks that could make improvements for existing users never rise to the top of the development stack.
What Plusnet don’t seem to realise is that just gaining new users isn’t the only way to increase the total user base – keeping your existing users happy is just as important. Plusnet’s churn rate is probably as high if not higher than any other ISP’s.

I nearly moved away 18 months ago when FTTC first became available on my exchange, but at that time I’d have had to deal with moving two domains as well as a lot of other things going on at the time. I’ve been watching as the 18 months passed to see if there was any sign that Plusnet would return to being the ISP who I would be confident would deal with problems if they occurred, promptly, efficiently and competently. Instead we’ve seen support so overwhelmed that they had to post a service notice apologising that it was taking up to 5 days to deal with faults. They tried to blame it on “their suppliers” but it was strange that I saw no other ISP indicated they were having such problems. That was the final straw!

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User Oldjim
(knowledge is power) Sun 27-Nov-16 23:17:11
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
A very accurate summary of the situation (this is from the poster with the highest post count in the Plusnet Community) and if I depended on my internet access for work or other critical needs I would have left as well
At some point, if things don't improve (don't laugh) I may indeed still bite the bullet and move to a more expensive supplier with decent support
Standard User gordon_k
(regular) Sun 27-Nov-16 23:39:16
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Interesting post.

I've been with PlusNet several years - joined partly on the basis of their pre-BT rep, although by the time I joined BT had already owned them long enough for the customer service side to be overstretched. But I was still impressed by the quality of the customer service I (eventually) got, given that it came from a BT-owned outfit.

I'd grown slightly tired of being with good, smaller ISPs, with knowledgeable support staff, which would then get subsumed into a bigger provider, whom I often didn't want to be with. I figured if BT were running a "boutique" alternative to their own mainstream service, then it was at least safe from being swallowed up by a monolith only interested in boosting their customer base.

In reply to a post by jelv:
It has changed the type of users that Plusnet attracts. They now appeal to those who are solely out for the cheapest deal and still expect first class support; they will show no loyalty at all and will leave again as soon as they are out of contract and a better offer is available.

Well this is me to a certain extent. Not solely out for the cheapest deal, and tech-aware enough that I rarely need support for client-side stuff, but with relatively simple technical requirements - just decent speed and reliability at a competitive price, and as I'm quite close to a decent modern exchange that isn't too much of an ask.

I do feel a certain customer loyalty to them: although they're not always the most efficient, their support staff do make the effort, and are generally pleasant.

In reply to a post by jelv:
What Plusnet don’t seem to realise is that just gaining new users isn’t the only way to increase the total user base – keeping your existing users happy is just as important. Plusnet’s churn rate is probably as high if not higher than any other ISP’s.

I feel this is perhaps a bit unfair, on the financial side at least. My experience of their existing-user policy up to this year has been that their retentions team have had a good amount of latitude, and I've been able to bargain them down to a very good deal - not necessarily the rock-bottom cheapest, but very competitive.

All that seems to have changed within the last 3 to 5 months - apparently their retentions folk no longer have discretion to match other sign-up offers, it was pretty much take-it-or-leave it this time. I was willing to pay more to avoid the potential hassle of a switch, and to express the fact that I was still generally pleased with the service. But what's ground my gears is their refusal to match their own new customer offer - what they offered me as an existing customer this time came to £366 over the course of an 18 month contract, compared to £244 for new signups (after line rental saver and the £50 cashback they were previously matching). The fact that this end figure comes out exactly 50% more than the new customer figure suggests a clear costed strategy.

I know this kind of approach is far from unknown in the industry, but it doesn't sit well with me - and after all, what kind of customer loyalty do they expect from folk who are receiving no loyalty from them?

So I'm off to [censored] Sky ( £105 over a 12 month contract, including free caller display ). Wouldn't have been my first choice ( or even second or third ) but the prices are not even in the same ballpark, and I'm not convinced the service I'll be getting will be that much inferior. We shall see...


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Standard User professor973
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 00:00:02
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: gordon_k] [link to this post]
 
Actually, Sky customer support is one of the best.
Standard User 4M2
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 00:23:21
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jelv:
I kept getting disconnections every time the phone rang for an incoming call. I had several engineer visits who confirmed the issue (including one who saw the issue when connecting to my line directly inside the exchange), but no resolution. Eventually I contacted AAISP with a view to migrating to them under their “We’ll fix your line” guarantee (see http://aaisp.net/broadband-trial.html). They immediately told me this was a known issue with Max Premium on Marconi 20CN exchange equipment and they’d get me moved across to different equipment.


Thanks for that info jelv - I had the same fault when I had Plusnet Max Premium on 20CN few years ago, even a SFI couldn't fix it during his visit to my home, checks at the cab and work done at the exchange. From his report Plusnet didn't seem to want to investigate the fault any further within a reasonable period of time so I migrated to xilo TTB SMPF ADSL2+ and I didn't have the disconnections again when the phone rang. I'm not sure whether or not it was a Marconi equipment issue but it does perhaps seem very possible.

Edited by 4M2 (Mon 28-Nov-16 00:31:59)

Standard User gordon_k
(regular) Mon 28-Nov-16 01:30:28
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: professor973] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by professor973:
Actually, Sky customer support is one of the best.

Yeah, I've noticed their CS rating climb gradually over the past few years.

It's primarily the Murdoch aspect that puts me off them - but I suspect I won't be contributing significantly to their coffers at £105 all-in for a year's DSL, so what the hell... wink
Standard User camieabz
(sensei) Mon 28-Nov-16 07:58:19
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Agreed.

Last time I was in touch with their CS, on the behalf of a business, the CS staff member was downright rude to me and the client. Suffice it to say both I and the client were left with no intention of renewing with PN.

They ignore input. Their removal of the night-time CS was the last straw. Can't be bothered going over old ground, and far easier to sum up with a rant I provided earlier. wink

http://forums.thinkbroadband.com/plusnet/f/4416365-s...
Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 08:02:04
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: 4M2] [link to this post]
 
When you looked at the router stats there were some distinctive oddities when on Marconi equipment - tones 33-36 are not being used.

You did post on my topic about this back in 2013!

http://forums.thinkbroadband.com/btsupplier/4233352-...

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User PhilipD
(experienced) Mon 28-Nov-16 08:36:41
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Hi

I left PlusNet many years ago and they were having all the same issues then, they never change. It's all the same problems coming round time and time again.

All existing customers fund the next round of "special" offers for new customers, there is little left to invest in the infrastructure, and so any money they spend it isn't about improving the service, it's about reducing it's costs and squeezing more people onto it.

You get what you pay for in this life, and with PlusNet if your special offer has ended and it isn't particularly cheap anymore, then you are just paying for someone else's special offer, little goes into providing a good service to you.

Regards

Phil
Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 28-Nov-16 09:56:06
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
A good post, Jelv, and I can't disagree with any of it.

When I moved from IDNet to Plusnet in March '14 I was sent a message that an engineer would be required even though I was moving between FTTC services. I pointed this out to them and said it was confusing. Since then people continue to get this letter and they even get it now despite BT no longer sending engineers out automatically.

About a year ago I got a message saying that my firewall settings had been changed. Soon after I realised that my mail server had been knocked offline. Annoying but I changed the settings back and all seemed fine. Then it did it again. It was only after I posted a question on the forum that it turned out it was because my router was an open DNS relay. So a pretty good technical implementation let down by lousy communication.

However I think we need a little balance for this discussion. I've been with PN for nearly three years now. My initial contract ended in August '15. Through that entire time I've been paying just over £20pcm and have almost always enjoyed the full speed my line can handle (nearly 70Mb/s) 24/7.

The single-threaded issues of '15 were annoying because they went on far too long (at least seven months) but personally I was only affected three or four times and was able to get a decent connection after bouncing my router every time.

IPv6 - meh. Yeah I'm well aware of the technical advantages and it is a silly situation but..meh. Wake me up if/when there's a major website I can't get to or if an external mail server that can't use IPv4 to talk to mine.

My personal experience is that when it works (and 99% of the time it has done for me) it's reliable and fast. I don't need it to do anything more than it already does and I get it for £22pcm. As a knowledgeable person I accept that broadband in the UK is perhaps under priced. But honestly there seems no reason for me to pay extra.

Edit: This from the number two in the 'thanked' list (I guess you're never going to beat me on that now, Jelv) and number four in the fixed list.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Edited by Andrue (Mon 28-Nov-16 10:05:02)

Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Mon 28-Nov-16 10:01:28
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: professor973] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by professor973:
Actually, Sky customer support is one of the best.
Their TV side seems to be pretty good. It's a pity they can't guarantee me a static IP address though and their pricing is not particularly keen.

I have Sky HD (Sky Q from this weekend) so you'd think a triple play deal would be a great opportunity for me and Sky. Nope. Despite a wide-ranging discussion when I decided to upgrade to Sky Q when the dust has settled I'd be paying over £5pcm more and I wouldn't know if I could get a static IP address until after the service had gone live.

I got the distinct impression that they are only offering 80/20 because it exists and don't really want many customers to sign up for it.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK
Standard User georgelnx
(regular) Mon 28-Nov-16 10:44:48
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
@jelv
Well said. A good summary of the current state of Plusnet but things have been worse.

Back when Leeds call centre was just starting, I had a serious fault and spent 2 hours plus waiting for support to answer the phones. This was over a period of 3 months so not a one off bad experience. However in those days the support was 24 hours a day so at least you knew that you'd get through to someone even if it was at half eleven at night after a 9pm call!

As you said the feedback from the forums seems to just be ignored (if it every gets through to the correct people). A case in point is that in July 2015, I flagged up a page that tells users with mobiles to call a charged for number to get support. I was told it would be fixed. Last week, someone else flagged up the same page. 16 months and nothing has been changed.

After 7 years, I'm looking to move away too as I dread the idea of having to actually use the support.

Standard User 4M2
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 15:21:35
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jelv:
When you looked at the router stats there were some distinctive oddities when on Marconi equipment - tones 33-36 are not being used.

You did post on my topic about this back in 2013!

http://forums.thinkbroadband.com/btsupplier/4233352-...


Yes I did, sorry but I've now deleted the images that I linked to and I forgot about the Marconi issue that you mentioned. I assume that the SFI who inspected my line was not aware of a possible or relevant Marconi issue with a 20CN uncapped upstream rate and by the time Bob Pullen at Plusnet got on the case it was too late.

Edited by 4M2 (Mon 28-Nov-16 15:55:53)

Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 16:23:20
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: 4M2] [link to this post]
 
Bob wasn't involved with my case so whether what I found out got passed around at Plusnet I don't know and the person who finally got it sorted left them some time ago. It wouldn't surprise me if someone had the same issue today and they were just as clueless as they were in my case.

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User 4M2
(knowledge is power) Mon 28-Nov-16 16:59:22
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jelv:
Bob wasn't involved with my case so whether what I found out got passed around at Plusnet I don't know and the person who finally got it sorted left them some time ago. It wouldn't surprise me if someone had the same issue today and they were just as clueless as they were in my case.


Actually the reason I had the upstream uncapped was because I was having a few issues with uploads timing out before they had completed (no auto-resume was possible on the site to which I was uploading at that time.) To cure that problem Plusnet uncapped the upstream rate for free and the timing out problem was resolved. However after a while the phone ringing fault started and neither myself, the SFI or Plusnet considered reverting to a capped upstream rate. It's possible that Bob may have considered it since the exchange was only 20CN enabled (yet "low cost" because of TalkTalk LLU) and he may have established a Marconi issue if it was applicable - I guess I will never know for sure.

However moving from Plusnet to xilo TTB partial LLU (SMPF) turned out to be very favourable and I was really happy to have escaped the Plusnet haphazard ticketing system smile
Standard User 69bertie
(member) Mon 28-Nov-16 20:38:31
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jelv:
I’ve lost count of the number of posts I’ve seen where new users have placed orders and some time if not weeks later they are wondering when they’ll be moved across. When they contact Plusnet it’s found that the order from Plusnet to their suppliers failed and it hadn’t been picked up. Again this points to issues with systems not being addressed when it would reduce customer dissatisfaction and reduce support requests.

Yep, been there. First (new customer) order got cancelled. Would have been nice to have been informed at the time - by email. As it was I had to go through the entire motions again to get an order placed. Moral of the story is never have an ongoing fault problem. It gets turned down by the system, at least that is what I found happened in my case.

The changed approach has also had other consequences:
It has changed the type of users that Plusnet attracts. They now appeal to those who are solely out for the cheapest deal and still expect first class support; they will show no loyalty at all and will leave again as soon as they are out of contract and a better offer is available.

Hey up, that me! I do it all the time. Loyalty, I've yet to come across any company (broadband, insurance, what ever) that can match the terms frequently on offer to new customers. When it come to renewing if it isn't the cheapest for like for like then I move. Simple.

And jumping to another ISP when problems arise might well leave one with just the same issues, simply because a fair number use the same Openreach network to supply the service. ISP's might say they can move mountains but usually that will come at a cost.

The most likely time for users to need support is when they join or upgrade to FTTC from ADSL. The current strategy means that there will continue to be high demands for support so I cannot see any prospect of a return to the high levels of service we saw in the past.

What sort of service are you referring to? CS, I try not to use. Otherwise, apart from the recent drop in connection speed (Openreach again) I really cannot fault Plusnet over the past year that I have been with them. This test seems to be normal for me. It's very difficult for me to justify paying extra for something that Plusnet already provide reliably.

What Plusnet don’t seem to realise is that just gaining new users isn’t the only way to increase the total user base – keeping your existing users happy is just as important. Plusnet’s churn rate is probably as high if not higher than any other ISP’s.

Something I would agree 100%. Sadly, it seems to be the way lots of companies are going. One reason I moved from BT and god knows how many other non telco companies over the years. All because in their books loyalty means nothing.

Wish you well in your move but I think I'll have saved far more money over the years having the same amounts of bits coming down the fibre/copper wires. smile

Standard User 10forcash
(regular) Mon 28-Nov-16 22:06:12
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Secure email

Users have been requesting secure email for many years and Plusnet had been promising its coming for just as long. Late 2014 a selected number of users were told how they could configure their email to use SSL/TLS on their outgoing mail so it looked like Plusnet might be getting there. Since then nothing and all requests for an indication of when it might be available get a non-committal response (incidentally the outgoing secure email server is still there – I was using it up to the day I left).
None of the above will provide end-to-end encryption, you, and your recipients need to use a mail client that supports using certificates and encryption - you could send an email to 10000 recipients but if just one doesn't use certificates, then essentially the email you sent is insecure. Secure channel and encryption are not the same. Equally well, if your email provider (anyone relying on their ISP to provide email should really, really not be sending anything that they consider sensitive) is using a secure channel, unless all legs of the route are using the same level of transport or better, then the whole transmission must be considered insecure.
Standard User hk11
(fountain of knowledge) Mon 28-Nov-16 22:24:34
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
I'm in the throws of leaving after giving them a second chance.

Was promised things would change at the begining of my contract, but alas ....

I don't think there is such a thing as a good ISP these days, if indeed there ever was. I'm just hoping my next 12 months will be, relatively trouble-free. wink


Keef- Sheerness Kent UK - Plusnet via Technicolor TG582N

Previously - EE, New Call Telecom/Fuelbroadband, Plusnet, Virgin/NTL/Bell Cable, Crosswinds, IC24, FreeOnlineNet,
X-Stream, Totalise, Freeserve, Force9, TescoNet, AOL, Freenetname, Pipex, E7
===========

Edited by hk11 (Mon 28-Nov-16 22:26:33)

Standard User hk11
(fountain of knowledge) Mon 28-Nov-16 22:33:01
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: professor973] [link to this post]
 
That's good to know, as that is where I am heading. wink


Keef- Sheerness Kent UK - Plusnet via Technicolor TG582N

Previously - EE, New Call Telecom/Fuelbroadband, Plusnet, Virgin/NTL/Bell Cable, Crosswinds, IC24, FreeOnlineNet,
X-Stream, Totalise, Freeserve, Force9, TescoNet, AOL, Freenetname, Pipex, E7
===========
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 29-Nov-16 13:36:22
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Very much reflecting the fears for the future that made me leave in August 2015. I feared greatly when Andy Baker was appointed CEO in December 2013, and was not mistaken.

In my time with Plusnet the promises of more and better support kept being made, and not just broken by failure but made worse by deliberate structural changes. The most important of which was the effective removal of the ticket system, which although it needed major reform ,(adding info to it automatically sent it to the back of the queue), did at least let non-emergency problems sit on the back burner at the customer end while they got on with their life waiting for a reply.

The progressive hiding of useful information such as the Current line speed, (I assume it is still available using the direct link which is no longer published in the help pages), and the gateway loadings. I also found the reorganisation of the help pages appalling, with their emphasis on making you end up with the robot-chat which was worse then the previous maze built up over many years.

I couldn't even accept the removal of information of the gateway and node page, which incidentally gave approximate customer numbers and may have been the justification for the removal of the page. All the big ISPs publish them at least annually, so why not be better as before? The main information on loadings often gave clues for the customer as to what to do about performance issues. For example, simply try gateway hopping, or raise a ticket.

The effective muzzling and neutering of the extremely able and helpful online Care Team around the end of 2014 to early 2015, I forget the actual time, really struck me, with some of the best being moved to other jobs. Whether as promotion or sideways to get them out of the way I don't know. I see one at least still does post occasionally. If for promotion, I do not begrudge them that! They hugely deserved a reward. If sideways, hmmmm.

But they were not replaced by people with the same clout within the organisation. They were replaced by perfectly helpful, decent and competent people who did well, but seemed not to have anything like the power to actually get things fixed on a customer's account compared to earlier. Wasn't the team just absorbed into the main CS function as well?

Alongside that happening to them on the Community forums, they were clearly banned from significant contribution here.

I came across some telling stuff a link in the Tut! Tut! thread and posted an extract there. I am moving it to here as more directly relevant to jelv's catalogue. (Green = success/done; red = fail/withdrawn):-
So, without further ado, what does 2007 hold for PlusNet?

Summary:

Please see the detail below these points for more information, but in summary, these are our plans for 2007:
ongoing improvement of customer support including the expansion of our Business Support Team.
•incremental broadband central capacity and continued improvements to our network management systems.
•a next-generation email platform with new features, enhanced Webmail, and vastly improved service performance and resilience.
•replacement of the “You Stay We Pay” payment scheme
•introduction of new ‘converged’ products, such as ‘ BT Home Hub’, ‘BT Fusion’ and ‘BT Vision’, and an improved Voice over IP (PlusTalk) offering.
new hosting and domain solutions.
•more transparency of our business policies, network performance, and a new community support website.

etc
Current promises don't look much different, and are no different from the repeated almost identical ones year after year frown. From the outside I now see the online chat developing into farce and the phone help system not worth trying - or at least no point in hanging on longer than 15 minutes. People have things to do! Sitting with a phone on loudspeaker is rarely an option.

Add to that the sheer management incompetence over the installation of non-IPv6 kit (the bng ones) to replace the older stuff that handled it fine as far as I could tell when on the trial, and the withdrawal of 24-hour support, and long ago I stopped recommending them. I'd be ashamed to do so.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15329kbps @ 600m. - BQM

Edited by RobertoS (Tue 29-Nov-16 13:38:54)

Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Tue 29-Nov-16 15:03:58
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Hmmm...

That list of 2007 plans doesn't make good reading!

Perhaps you should have coloured another of them thus:

incremental broadband central capacity and continued improvements to our network management systems

as it's all been a bit stop/go as they moved people to the new network over the last year!

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User Apprentice
(knowledge is power) Tue 29-Nov-16 15:24:57
Print Post

Current line speed link


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=data_transfer...

Still works for my 20CN ADSL 3Meg connection.

The only issue I have with PN is the disappointing retention deal I was offered this year, if I hadn't been stuck with their LRS I might have gone to .................... BT [cough], so I stayed with PN.

plusnet user
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 29-Nov-16 16:21:09
Print Post

Re: Current line speed link


[re: Apprentice] [link to this post]
 
Yes, I have the link, but purely to supply it to people when asking for the result smile.

I expect I have the page as well, with goodness knows what in it, as I still have an email-only account to hold my d/d details to pay my referral credits through.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15329kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User georgelnx
(regular) Tue 29-Nov-16 17:00:24
Print Post

Re: Current line speed link


[re: Apprentice] [link to this post]
 
The current line speed is only currently of value if
1. You have a static IP or
2. are still on the old network.
If dynamic and on new network then this value has no bearing on your speeds (Ask staffers Chris or HarryB on the forums if you want evidence as they have posted this information multiple times)

Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 29-Nov-16 17:03:25
Print Post

Re: Current line speed link


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
Less another nail in the coffin, but more breaking it up for firewood wink.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15329kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Tue 29-Nov-16 20:25:37
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: gordon_k] [link to this post]
 
on sky things mostly "just work"

They rolled out ipv6 albeit with dynamic prefixes. Congestion issues dont happen and so on.
They also answer the phone quicker than 50 minutes if that bothers you smile

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 29-Nov-16 20:35:15
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
But your IPv6 now has a static IP address for your router?

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15329kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Tue 29-Nov-16 20:37:48
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
yes because the prefixes are "sticky"

So they wont change providing.

Router doesnt send a release command (I had to get asuswrt fixed for this and also contributed to pfsense fix, sky even admitted some of their own routers were sending release also but they fixed).
Connection isnt offline for more than 7 days allowing dhcp to expire.
DUID doesnt change.

My router always has the same wan ipv6 ip.

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6

Edited by Chrysalis (Tue 29-Nov-16 20:38:13)

Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 29-Nov-16 21:55:29
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
Thanks. That extra info you've given could be useful smile. I'm trying to sort out mine. Curiously, a few dropped PPPoE sessions or re-syncs caused by playing with settings have resulted in a change, but what seems to have been a "random" re-sync an hour ago retained the IP address.

My ZyXel 3214 router supposedly has a problem with IPv6 with no fix expected, but no-one really seems to know what causes it. I was running using my HG612 into the WAN port, but trying its inbuilt modem and making progress slowly.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15329kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Wed 30-Nov-16 15:54:53
Print Post

Re: Current line speed link


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
I think on the theme of this thread, it's worth this link to your post about the new mobile phone mess. With the OP of that thread also relevant.

More chaos, with one of the faults the many-years-existing problem of simple error correction of a simple website error. In this case a single character missing from a link. Response "We're aware of the technical issues with some of the links provided via our website. We're working to get this resolved as quickly as possible and we'll keep you updated".

So a vital link not checked, and now needs to go onto the priority assignment queue awaiting a weekly committee meeting; then that forwarded to the next task assignment committee meeting a week later to assign it to a team leader; who receives weekly schedules of new work and then adds it to the bottom of a team member's list for the priority level assigned 2-3 weeks earlier; who in a few weeks adds the missing character to the link and tests it once then sends a completion ticket to the team leader, and back up the system to the mod being incorporated into the next website update at the end of January, having missed the end of December one.

Or similar!

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 60000/15393kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Wed 30-Nov-16 16:16:00
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
well aaisp supply static prefixes.

So if your router WAN ip is changing then the very likely cause is a dynamic DUID been generated by the router, probably based on date/time.

Ideally you want the DUID generated based on only the MAC of the router, which will mean then its always the same DUID after reboot's etc. which should keep the same ip. It may also be possible to assign a manual static ip from the prefix which bypasses the DUID altogether.

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6

Edited by Chrysalis (Wed 30-Nov-16 16:16:34)

Standard User richi
(regular) Thu 01-Dec-16 10:19:58
Print Post

Re: Current line speed link


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RobertoS:
So a vital link not checked, and now needs to go onto the priority assignment queue awaiting a weekly committee meeting; then that forwarded to the next task assignment committee meeting a week later to assign it to a team leader; who receives weekly schedules of new work and then adds it to the bottom of a team member's list for the priority level assigned 2-3 weeks earlier; who in a few weeks adds the missing character to the link and tests it once then sends a completion ticket to the team leader, and back up the system to the mod being incorporated into the next website update at the end of January, having missed the end of December one.
I dare say the task got filed at the bottom of a locked filing cabinet, stuck in a disused lavatory, with a sign on the door saying, "Beware of the leopard".

3 km line on THTG: 18/1 Mb/s with Pulse8
Standard User georgelnx
(regular) Sun 04-Dec-16 20:53:18
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: gordon_k] [link to this post]
 
A family member is leaving Plusnet after 4 weeks(!) to go to Sky due to the terrible service received. When I was told that they had signed for Plusnet, I did warn that they would probably experience issues. But I didn't believe that they would be so bad as to move supplier in less than 1 month. However it is.

Standard User georgelnx
(regular) Mon 05-Dec-16 21:07:01
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Jelv

You missed out the lack of Plusnet customer support in their forums. This post is a classic (by Adam Walker) and shows the new Plusnet in action Please note that this is a community site and as such a response from a member of staff doesn't denote that we've taken personal ownership of a customers issue or replying to a particular post going forwards unless that has been stated clearly or agreed between us and the customer which it wasn't in this case.
So clearly don't expect any help by posting in our forums.

Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Thu 05-Jan-17 10:34:44
Print Post

They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
I was promised a call from a manager yesterday within 4 hours, NEVER HAPPENED.

They break promises, have staff answering calls who have no clue as to what they are saying or promising.

Jelv you did well to leave. They are an absolute mess and when the round of advertising cheap products which get customers for a short time and then they leave, is past, so hopefull will PN be.
Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Thu 05-Jan-17 12:32:45
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
many of the senior members here left them when things were on a clear downward projectile.

Me, ignition, RobertoS, and jelv all left plusnet around the same time. We all tried to give them time to improve but it wasnt to be sadly.

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Thu 05-Jan-17 13:01:00
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
So true.

When good men like Adam Walker have to post (in the Community Forums) the appalling message quoted here, there is no hope remains of proper support for anything other than asking which cable plugs in where and how do you switch your house lights on, because it's too dark to find your computer.

Except the second of those isn't on their Q & A list so they can't tell you. Especially as there are at least three possible answers wink.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Thu 05-Jan-17 13:47:31
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Chrysalis:
many of the senior members here left them when things were on a clear downward projectile.

Me, ignition, RobertoS, and jelv all left plusnet around the same time. We all tried to give them time to improve but it wasnt to be sadly.
Thing is for the price they are very good (as long as you don't experience any faults).

The recent network issues made me look around again but I can't find many places that will offer me 80/20 (with no noticeable peak-time slow down) with a static IP address and unlimited usage for £36pcm (£13pcm line rental to Pulse8). When all's said and done in the three years I've been with PN I've only personally experienced half a dozen days of bad service.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Edited by Andrue (Thu 05-Jan-17 13:48:07)

Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Thu 05-Jan-17 13:50:57
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
All that is saying is that Adam didn't take ownership of that particular issue. He answered a question, reset the connection and then suggested the user carry out some diagnostics. The user either didn't do that or else neglected to post the results. The issue is therefore pending until/unless the customer does what is asked.

That isn't to say that PN customer service doesn't have problems. It's truly horrible most of the time. But the forum staff generally do a reasonable job and all I see there is a customer not doing what was asked and then getting pissy.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Edited by Andrue (Thu 05-Jan-17 13:57:31)

Standard User Apprentice
(knowledge is power) Thu 05-Jan-17 14:04:37
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
Thing is for the price they are very good (as long as you don't experience any faults).

In my case I would agree with you, the exchange is 20CN and the connection is long so speed test results are around 2.5Mbps, very solid connection and never had any serious issues in the years I've been with them after moving over from madasafish.

Their retention deals have changed in that I'm now paing £9.99 a month for BB on a 12 month contract + LRS, the previous 12 months there was no charge for the BB.

plusnet user
Standard User 23Prince
(experienced) Thu 05-Jan-17 15:11:53
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RogN:
I was promised a call from a manager yesterday within 4 hours, NEVER HAPPENED.

They break promises, have staff answering calls who have no clue as to what they are saying or promising.

Jelv you did well to leave. They are an absolute mess and when the round of advertising cheap products which get customers for a short time and then they leave, is past, so hopefull will PN be.


many of the managers don't care about the customers and are only there to advance themselves, M r Kelly is (or was) one prime example
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Thu 05-Jan-17 16:54:56
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
Thing is for the price they are very good (as long as you don't experience any faults).


Or need any assistance about anything, ticket system no good, online chat when you can get it but often will not deal with some issues, long wait for phonbes, when they can't answer promise a return call in 4 hours, does not happen.

Just a disgrace. Not the first time either. I remember being there when they booted customers and threatened them with legal action.

Then they got better and are now a dissaster again.
Standard User hk11
(fountain of knowledge) Thu 05-Jan-17 17:29:23
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
The actual service is quite good. The problem, like most of the ISPs I've been with is when something goes wrong or is not to the norm. it is very difficult to get things sorted. frown

Even after I migrated away they were still sending me bills and notices that I didn't have a valid payment method registered with them!


Keef- Sheerness Kent UK - Sky via Technicolor TG582N

Previously - EE, New Call Telecom/Fuelbroadband, Plusnet, Virgin/NTL/Bell Cable, Crosswinds, IC24, FreeOnlineNet,
X-Stream, Totalise, Freeserve, Force9, TescoNet, AOL, Freenetname, Pipex, E7
===========
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Thu 05-Jan-17 18:11:35
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: hk11] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by hk11:
The actual service is quite good. The problem, like most of the ISPs I've been with is when something goes wrong or is not to the norm.
Things have been going wrong for years, far exceeding the norm of other ISPs. But until eighteen to twenty months ago the remnants of the Digital Care Team were still managing to keep the lid on.

That largely came to an end when the 24-hour phone help was removed, along with any semblance of a useful ticket system.

The introduction of the bng range of gateways was when the broadband service began to degrade - brand new kit that wasn't IPv6 capable? What????

Plusnet were running an IPv6 trial for years before I left in August 2015. Since when BT and Sky have gone live with it widespread. I just spent a week over Christmas on Sky 2.5Mbps ADSL2+ at a holiday cottage. On IPv6.

Then we started getting the congested shared WBMC, that strangely didn't seem to affect other ISPs using the same shared MSILs. So the much-trumpeted dedicated WBMC network crawled into view. Crawled being the word - like a dog with three legs and lame in one of those.

We see glaringly bad CS from many ISPs. Plusnet used to be much better than them. Now, it isn't.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User georgelnx
(member) Thu 05-Jan-17 20:07:50
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
Andrue
I've just look at the forum and have found several threads still unanswered by staff after a minimum of 24 hours where it is crystal clear that staff input is all that is needed. But the staff ignore them (and the posts aren't rude or bad tempered or rants).
It is painful to see that the staff pick and choose at random.
I've been told off by forum staff for telling the ignored users that it would be better to use Facebook or Twitter as the public profile of them is higher and therefore more likely to see a response from staff. Amazingly the staff then answered the questions they had been ignoring for days.
But I still hold to that and wouldn't report anything I expected to get an answer to on the forums.

Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 06-Jan-17 00:32:27
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
The constant excuse now, I have seen it twice in one day on two postings from management, is "human error" , well the bots could do better.

If they could keep their customers maybe they could afford decent staff instead of muppets.
Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 06-Jan-17 16:54:08
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
For an alternative experience:

https://community.plus.net/t5/Fibre-Broadband/House-...

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK
Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 06-Jan-17 16:57:28
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by georgelnx:
Andrue
I've just look at the forum and have found several threads still unanswered by staff after a minimum of 24 hours
PN's stated response time is 72 hours.
It is painful to see that the staff pick and choose at random.
Can't say I've noticed that but I suspect you're right.
I've been told off by forum staff for telling the ignored users that it would be better to use Facebook or Twitter as the public profile of them is higher and therefore more likely to see a response from staff.
Being 'told off' seems harsh but they are right. The forum is usually the best place to ask. Maybe it shouldn't be but it is.
But I still hold to that and wouldn't report anything I expected to get an answer to on the forums.
Nope. That's the complete opposite of the situation.

Of course customers should get good and rapid responses from all communication avenues but currently the forum is far and away the best place to get a response. At least there you are dealing with knowledgeable and - apparently at least - willing staff. The other avenues seem to be populated by indifferent script-monkeys.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Edited by Andrue (Fri 06-Jan-17 16:57:42)

Standard User AndyHCZ
(committed) Fri 06-Jan-17 17:08:09
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: 23Prince] [link to this post]
 
Kelly was one of the best members of staff, helped me out numerous times (including when he was away from work).

Dave, Kelly, Paul H, Bob Pullen - all were really helpful staff members. Problem is that as Plusnet grew, they became more busy themselves and the procedure for support changed as well.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 06-Jan-17 17:28:15
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: AndyHCZ] [link to this post]
 
That was KellyD. If that's who prince23 was referring to, I agree that Kelly was brilliant. If there is a "Mr r Kelly" then I know nothing about him.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User georgelnx
(member) Fri 06-Jan-17 19:52:34
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
Sorry but the forum is not an official support channel. The COMMUNITY FORUM mission statement is
We're a friendly bunch of Plusnet customers helping each other out, answering questions and talking about everything under the sun from broadband to what we're having for breakfast.
and is clearly stated as such at https://community.plus.net/
However Twitter and Facebook are official support channels.

Standard User 23Prince
(experienced) Fri 06-Jan-17 20:43:12
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RobertoS:
That was KellyD. If that's who prince23 was referring to, I agree that Kelly was brilliant. If there is a "Mr r Kelly" then I know nothing about him.


Sorry noo Not KellyD - He is a legend in my eyes. I meant one of the managers who thought he wass above his station and in was clearly in bed with the execs

Paul H is still one of my best mates to this day, Absolute top bloke smile

Dave - such a funny bloke. I used to call him Yoda smile

Bob - Ah Bob, I remember the day he announced he had done 100GB on his staff ADSL line - only to be [censored] on by Dave who then went and did a TB lol

Edited by 23Prince (Fri 06-Jan-17 20:45:35)

Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Sat 07-Jan-17 12:25:41
Print Post

Re: They are a disgrace


[re: 23Prince] [link to this post]
 
Bob is still there trying to keep things together, but he seems the only competent staff member there now. frown

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6
Standard User Andrue
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sat 07-Jan-17 13:40:10
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by georgelnx:
Sorry but the forum is not an official support channel.
I didn't say it was.

I said that the forums were the best place to go for support. And they are. The other channels are manned by ignorant script monkeys. At least on the forums you can chat to stars like Bob Pullen. Most of the forum staff know what they are talking about and have shown willingness to get involved and resolve problems. Time and again we see them having to pick up the pieces from a failed twitter chat or phone call. Time and again they have to apologise for incorrect information given by the 'official' customer service channels.

Anyone that needs support from PN is best advised to go to the forums.

By trying to suggest the opposite you are doing PN customers a great disservice. What little support PN offer is best obtained through the forums. And, generally speaking, you will get your issue resolved through there.

---
Andrue Cope
Brackley, UK

Edited by Andrue (Sat 07-Jan-17 13:42:11)

Standard User georgelnx
(member) Sat 07-Jan-17 17:59:30
Print Post

Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: Andrue] [link to this post]
 
But I was clearly told that Twitter and Facebook are manned by the same staff that look after the forum. Hence why they told me off for pointing customers to Twitter. (the 2 posts in different places syndrome).
We aren't going to agree.

Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Sat 07-Jan-17 18:13:21
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: georgelnx] [link to this post]
 
If you posted about the same thing in any two of the three places, or worse still all three, then that will be what they were telling you off about. Cross-posting the same thing is evil!

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User georgelnx
(member) Sat 07-Jan-17 21:40:51
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Re: Why I have left Plusnet


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
I wasn't posting multiple post anywhere!
I was advising people that they would be better off using Twitter to get a response as their posts were being ignored on the forum. The staff when they eventually showed up where not happy that I pointed that out.

Edited by georgelnx (Sat 07-Jan-17 21:42:34)

Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Thu 12-Jan-17 23:17:28
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: 23Prince] [link to this post]
 
Oh feels like a PN staff love-in. I wish any staff were competent, dealt with issues, did not shoot from the hip, listened to customers and wanted to do customers proud. Sadly in my experience they don't.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 13-Jan-17 01:07:48
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
The staff of two or three years ago, working in the management regime of that time, were exactly what you request. Those who are left have nothing like the freedom to do that, nor the power to get things done, that they had then.

Don't be so denigratory.

Very senior management is where the blame for the problems lies. Not with people like you and I doing all they are still allowed to. Walking out of a job may be something you can do with ease - not many people can.

Edit - typo "do" corrected to "so".

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6

Edited by RobertoS (Fri 13-Jan-17 08:25:35)

Standard User awontroba
(regular) Fri 13-Jan-17 02:49:18
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
While Plusnet staff were very helpful with my business ADSL and later long drawn out switch to FTTC, their sales droid's extremely unhelpful response to the problems I had with their system when I attempted to order FTTC on a new line at my mother's home made me go to BT for that.

While I have not suffered since FTTC installation, I pay Plusnet around £58 a month for FTTC, phone and call package, and fear that it will not be value for money if something does go wrong, especially at night. (while the phone calls are picked up rapidly, nobody can do anything until the morning).

Once my home business FTTC contract is up in the autumn I too will be off. Probably to A&A.

My phone contract is already up. I assume I can soon migrate this to somebody like Pulse8 or even BT and not break my Plusnet FTTC. Any advice?

--
Adrian
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 13-Jan-17 08:40:35
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: awontroba] [link to this post]
 
My phone was never with Plusnet. It was always with BT until I moved it to Pulse8 in late 2015. I was on Plusnet FTTC at the time and there was no problem with the switch.

A month later I triggered my move of FTTC to AAISP. Again, a completely smooth transfer.

Since then there have been people moving phone from Plusnet to Pulse8 and keeping their FTTC with Plusnet. At the time that simply meant paying Plusnet an extra £2.50 per month for broadband. I haven't checked but is that now £3? IIRC the OP of this thread was one. This saved them a considerable amount per month.

Jelv has now also moved his FTTC away, as per his OP of this thread.

How you get to £58 per month with Plusnet I also haven't worked out. It sounds impossibly high to me. How much do you use the phone and in what way? Do you need the phone package you have?

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User Oldjim
(knowledge is power) Fri 13-Jan-17 10:27:52
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Very easy - Unlimited Business Fibre with no discounts https://www.plus.net/business/broadband/fibre-optic/ once you add VAT
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 13-Jan-17 10:52:20
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Oldjim] [link to this post]
 
Ah blush. I forgot about the "business" bit frown.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 13-Jan-17 10:59:27
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Having managers not read what their minions have really said before shooting from the hip has nothing to do with anything you talk about.

That is my recent experience.

They are just incompetent.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 13-Jan-17 11:37:54
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
If staff are incompetent it is senior managements' fault.

Simples.

The competent staff get sidelined, or prevented from acting sensibly in the way the good ones used to, or leave.

You seem to have a long history of complaining about Plusnet, so I don't understand your objection to my absolutely correct post. Though I'm not sure from your post who you mean is shooting from the hip, and who are the incompetents - the minions staff or the (middle-to-low level) managers.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User awontroba
(regular) Fri 13-Jan-17 12:05:50
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Thanks for the advice folks. I'll move my phone in a month or so

Myself, as with my ex employer, I suspect that the source of Plusnet's problems is the senior management level, with a determination to lead the race to the bottom. I expect that soon they will be offshoring as much as they can. A well worn path to disenchanting customers and de-motivating the staff who remain.

--
Adrian
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 13-Jan-17 12:36:23
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Never tried to discover the hierarchy, but in the old days did know some of the top staff, now they are just names. But I was not referring to the minions, they are not incompetent usually just not trained well. I was referring to people who claim they are 'managers'. And whilst I respect your right to say anything about managers, respect mine when my experience and that of others may be vastly different from yours.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 13-Jan-17 12:46:38
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
Are you reading my posts correctly?

You complain about the management. I am complaining about senior management. In what way am I disrespecting your views when as far as I can see I am agreeing with them. Particularly with regard to the top echelons who control the whole structure - the target of my criticisms?

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User Chrysalis
(legend) Fri 13-Jan-17 18:10:01
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
I can give one example of change.

When I first joined plusnet, if I raised an issue, the forum staff were able to resolve it personally, they had the power to do that.

When they got replaced with members of another team (as the department got dissolved), that new team instead of taking ownership of problems would simply pass on the problem to the standard support staff with a request to treat the problem with a bit higher urgency. They seemed to not have the power to fix things themselves.

Its also around that time things like the exchange status and other stuff that was maintained by that original team stopped been updated.

Plusnet when I joined them did have problems, but they were more like annoyances then big issues, it was generally congestion free, and was competent staff manning the forums able to fix almost everything.

Fast forward to now and various alarming things have happened.

They gone from testing ipv6 to now not having any foreseeable capability to launch it (as the new gateways seem to not support it).
The staff manning the forums are not as useful as the first bunch were, bob seems to be the only staff member left who is genuinely frustrated with problems, but he is just one guy, he cannot perform miracles.
As the process of migrating from ag to bgn gateways started, performance problems appeared, and since then they have never been fully resolved.
They have reverted to 40/2 as their mainstream FTTC product, when prior to that was 40/10 and 40/20.
Publicly available information has gradually been removed.
24/7 support became daytime and evening support.
Tickets have been replaced with live chat an inferior system.

Plusnet has basically been transformed into a mass market isp by its management (who someone else has pointed out are not even on plusnet's payroll but BT instead) which is targeting the market segment below BT retail.

Sky Fibre Pro BQM - IPv4 BQM - IPv6
Standard User lodge
(committed) Fri 13-Jan-17 20:25:26
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Chrysalis:
Plusnet has basically been transformed into a mass market isp by its management (who someone else has pointed out are not even on plusnet's payroll but BT instead) which is targeting the market segment below BT retail.


That was always going to happen when BT bought Plusnet. I'm just surprised it took so long.
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 13-Jan-17 23:22:14
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: Chrysalis] [link to this post]
 
Top management have always been ify. I remember the issues with Dave Tomlinson and Carol Axe. That was way back in about 2004.
Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Fri 13-Jan-17 23:48:45
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
Later than you thought: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/carolaxe
Customer Support Director
Plusnet
June 2007 – March 2009 (1 year 10 months)

She didn't last long!

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 14-Jan-17 00:57:50
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
She was there earlier than that, I received this email and you can see the date
This email is to notify you of the introduction of a fair usage policy for our residential broadband services, which will apply from April 2005. Additional information and an FAQ, where we have answered many questions that may arise have also been provided at the bottom of this email. Further to this, we will shortly make an additional announcement which relates to free connection speed increases being offered to all customers.

Background

Our residential broadband services are sold based on a 50:1 shared (contended) service. Customers who continuously download very large files, especially from sources where no revenue is generated to cover the cost of such high usage, are effectively using their connection as a 1:1 service. If left unchecked, this burden on capacity, plus the higher costs associated with this type of usage, would have meant general price increases or an impact on the speed and quality of our service for all customers. Furthermore, with the imminent connection speed increases most customers can expect to see, the problems caused by the very heaviest of users will only increase if no action is taken.

Fair Usage Policy

After reviewing our recent exercise, which placed the 0.2% of customers who had the highest utilisation onto a reserved platform, shared between themselves, it became clear that this was successful in terms of returning 10% of capacity. It was also apparent however that we needed to be clearer about what our Broadband products are designed to offer. Following feedback from our customers, we committed to introducing a clear fair usage policy, based on current contention levels, so that everyone can understand what fair and sustainable levels of usage are on our Premier broadband products.

We have worked hard to deliver a solution which avoids the need for us to increase prices or introduce monthly data transfer limits, both of which have been recently announced by many of our competitors. Because we understand that our customers wish to continue using a broadband product that is both flexible and sustainable, while offering great value at a low price, the fair usage policy we are adopting addresses these concerns. We believe it is both the clearest and fairest way for us to continue to offer the quality and service we are renowned for, to all of our customers.

The fair usage policy which is being introduced has been designed after taking into account specific customer feedback provided by the PlusNet Usergroup as well as a customer feedback survey, conducted last month. We envisage that the system will only affect around 1% of our customers, and even then, the design means a much smaller proportion than this will ever have their service impacted as a result of our fair usage policy. More information as well as details of how the system will work are provided on our website:

http://www.plus.net/features/usage_guide.shtml

We would also like to highlight that the fair usage levels which have been set are reflective of current wholesale costs for broadband provision, which like every ISP we must absorb. We recognise that usage levels vary for different customers and usage can be higher when people first register for broadband. The introduction of Internet telephony and video-on-demand style services will undoubtedly mean fair usage thresholds are reviewed in the future and because it is likely that provision of such services would include a revenue generating opportunity for ISPs, it means the costs of delivering these services can be accommodated within our product strategy.

The fair usage thresholds we will be implementing significantly exceed those defined by the 50:1 contended nature of our residential broadband products. As such, these changes represent a clarification to our existing terms and conditions (Sections 11.2(b) & 50.1). The introduction of a fair usage policy does not reflect a change to the product we are supplying. We would however encourage any customer who is unclear about any matter in relation to fair usage to contact our support centre where we will be happy to address your individual enquiry. Before doing so however we would ask that customers review all of the additional content provided in the link above.

With Regards,

Carol Axe
PlusNet Customer Support
Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Sat 14-Jan-17 09:46:22
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
I hadn't spotted that there was a gap in her experience shown on LinkedIn from 2003 to June 2007.

Obviously she wants to airbrush over a period in her career.

I wonder why that could be?

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User GeorgeLloyd
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 14-Jan-17 10:14:03
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
She didn't last long where ever she worked.

George
plusnet smile
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 14-Jan-17 10:47:39
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
Yes it was in that era that many of us were in serious conflict with PN. Getting old, I forget the name of the customer who was forcibly removed and threatened with court action. Carol Axe and Dave Tomlinson played a huge part in that confrontation. It was in 2005 that Tomlinson banned many of us from the forums (still have his email saying "This is a neutral action" like hell) and PN stopped doing the forum moderation themselves mainly because they did not know how to sope with the whole situation IMO.

Interesting period! But maybe Axe prefers to forget it!
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Sat 14-Jan-17 10:48:18
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: GeorgeLloyd] [link to this post]
 
When I looked yesterday I did see that some of the changes were within the same employer. IIRC particularly the more recent ones.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 54999/14466Kbps @ 600m. BQMs - IPv4 & IPv6
Standard User 23Prince
(experienced) Sun 15-Jan-17 14:05:13
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RogN:
Oh feels like a PN staff love-in. I wish any staff were competent, dealt with issues, did not shoot from the hip, listened to customers and wanted to do customers proud. Sadly in my experience they don't.


back in my day they did. In fact it was encouraged.
Standard User 23Prince
(experienced) Sun 15-Jan-17 14:06:51
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jelv:
Later than you thought: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/carolaxe
Customer Support Director
Plusnet
June 2007 – March 2009 (1 year 10 months)

She didn't last long!


I was gonna say! She was there when I was.
Standard User jelv
(knowledge is power) Sun 15-Jan-17 15:20:54
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: RogN] [link to this post]
 
The bit about the forum moderation is incorrect. When I joined them 15 years ago customers where moderating the forums then and it's been that way ever since.

There was an incident when Ian Wild took it upon himself to do some moderation and there was a hell of a stink.

jelv

AAISP November 2016
(Previous ISP Plusnet November 2001 to October 2016)
Telephone rental: Pulse8
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Sun 15-Jan-17 15:45:06
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: 23Prince] [link to this post]
 
Too right, at times, but PN had some dark days too, when good an competent staff could not do what they knew needed doing!
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Sun 15-Jan-17 16:01:36
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: jelv] [link to this post]
 
It was not just Ian, the staff and moderators monitored the forum, when I think carefully. Because staff did stop people posting, not just mods. And PN staff were the ultimate arbiters. This is an extract of an email from April 2005 from Dave Tomlinson shows the cross roads that they faced and it was after this, my memory says, that staff were withdrawn from moderation.
As I say give me some time so that we can sort out how we are going to move
the forum forward from here and how the moderators will fit in.
Standard User RogN
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 20-Jan-17 12:18:01
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Re: They are a disgrace


[re: awontroba] [link to this post]
 
I think it is just rotten from top to bottom.

I have had emails this morning telling me I have a new contract, different length, different price from the one I reluctantly agreed in November 2016.

When I rang up they pressed me if I had rung up in January to change my contract. They had no idea.

They even tell me to trust them to put it right. That frightens me, because I know that they will just do what they usually do and mess it up again and again and again...

And that I will be back wasting my time getting to get through on the phone, explaining to people who do not get it and trying to sort out the mess they have made.

They are MORE than a disgrace.
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