Nearly slamming

Well, we have found a case where clearly OFCOMs plan for transfers is not designed that well!

We have a customer leaving, moving out of his house, and ceasing service. Fine, no problem

We put a cease order in to BT, only to find that the new occupant has already ordered phone and broadband on the line.

Because their order went in before we put in the cease, the order has gone in as a migrate, causing a 10 working delay for the new customer, which I am sure is much to their annoyance.

Bear in mind, new occupier could have done the order 10 working days ago to align with the day they move in, or a week ago nor realising the 10 working day thing, so an extra week delay. It looks like that did it a couple of days ago. All of this is actually quite sensible for the person moving in, and as a migrate it saves them money...

The problem is we cannot now cease the line. We are stuck with it - in this case for 12 more days and stuck paying for it until then.

Now, this is not a lot of money, but it is more the principle of the matter. We have ceased!

What adds to the problem is our systems have been carefully coded to match the messages we get from BT. The cease being rejected has unset the cease date and billed the customer ongoing (and if left will charge up to the new migrate date) even though our customer asked for it to be ceased.

Obviously we are sorting the billing to our customer, but we have the same issue with BT now. We want it ceased and BT are rejecting that. I think we'll make a billing dispute of this one to highlight the problem to BT.

However, our customer is likely to be exercising his right to treat this as slamming and click the link in the email we sent him and cancel the migrate. He did not, after all, authorise it! This will allow our cease to go through (if we put it in quickly enough), and then new customer will have to order as a new provide and not as a migrate and it will cost them more.

This is a mess! Personally I think our cease should be accepted, stopping billing to us, and if the migrate order had a CRD (Customer Required Date) that was sooner than the 10 working days, move the migrate back to match. That way this scenario would work for us and our customer, and allow the new customer the cheaper "migrate in" option without the extra lead time.

It would also allow us to expedite an outgoing migrate at the request of our customer by submitting a cease after notified of the outgoing migrate. This could be very good for customer service generally.

I'll suggest to BT, but I doubt it will get fixed.


  1. The only thing I can see BT doing is finding some way to stop the new customer getting a migrate rather than a new install RevK ;)

  2. Um, but on the flip side, presumably if it's being treated as a migrate, you won't be charged the cease fee by BTW - so that would make you better off in this instance?

    ...so in a way you're better off?

  3. Considering that A&A customers need to give 30 days notice before ceasing service, surely the order to cease should have gone in *before* the other customer had the opportunity to place an order to migrate ?

    As Backup Exec Goat says though, the cost of 10 or 12 days line rental is peanuts compared to the cease fee imposed by BT Wholesale; so, a couple of questions remain:

    * Is the cease fee saving passed on to your customer ? (if not, you really have no grounds for complaint here)

    * Does BT Wholesale impose a 30-day cancellation term for PSTN lines and ADSL/FTTC tails on A&A ? (if not, you *really* have no grounds for complaint here as the money taken from the customer + plus cease fee makes the last month of service in this case a very profitable venture for A&A).

    1. We have not required 30 days notice since this NoT process started!
      BT does not require notice on ceases on PSTN or DSL either.
      In this particular case the PSTN was migrating (no cease fee anyway) but DSL was ceasing as LLU migrate of PSTN so cease fee anyway it seems but also the extra 10 days.
      My complain is that the process is plainly broken - it has circumstances where BT can reject a cease - that is a bad move as once I have asked for a cease I have good grounds to dispute any billing after that point - BT cannot morally (or possibly even contractually) reject a cease and force me to keep taking service for 10 more days.

  4. Surely BT shouldn't accept the new provide order until their customer has released the line?

    1. They have to allow for that on PSTN, and there is a lead time and we can cancel that. It is for people disappearing, leaving line active, and no way to contact them.


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