In most things, when you pay more you get better service. Unfortunately, business telecom customers get the exact opposite. At least when it comes to the length of time it takes to turn up a new service.
Residential service? No problem. Quick like a bunny. Like today, I went to CenturyLink online, qualified my residence for faster Internet and chose my product (100 Mbps Internet). It took me less than 5 minutes to order the service and it's scheduled to be installed in 5 business days. Hop hop!
Business services? Thirty to 90 days is standard depending on what you order. It takes a minimum of 30 days to turn up DSL. It takes months to turn on Fiber service (60 - 90 days is standard turnaround for Fiber installs). Need any augmentation or builds? That can take up to 6 months. That's S-L-O-W like a tortoise. Not to mention maddening. Especially this day in age when retailers are delivering items same day.
Telecom providers might make the excuse that circuit design and engineering of Fiber services is what takes so long. Perhaps. But after 15 years in this industry, my suspicion is that more time is lost to top down approach to running a huge telecom company than are lost to the actually building of a network. That leaves business customers paying the price, in more ways then one.
If CenturyLink delivers on its 5 business day turnaround for my residential service, well then that should be the new standard with business telecom orders, too. I'll let you know next week.
About Brian Wade
Brian Wade is founder and president of the technology solutions company, Caisson Technologies. He has worked in telecom for 15 years, including as a customer care representative, service provisioner and sales representative. He launched Caisson in 2005. He writes about telecom products, promotions and industry trends on his blog.