business phone and Internet service

I agree with you. It takes too long to get business DSL and Fiber services installed.

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.

CenturyLink fiber to Seattle neighborhoods is good for residents and CWA workers too

Here's the scoop:

Lineman Broc and Bob, members of CWA Local 7800 were on the 4000 block of SW Frontenac Street in the Gatewood area of West Seattle installing a CenturyLink fiber slice box on an aerial line in the neighborhood.

Residential and business phone, Internet and TV services will be delivered across this new fiber facility (i.e. fiber cable carrying two shielded fiber bundles with 12 strands per bundle). 

The speeds will be much faster than current DSL services, according to CenturyLink.

Level 3 Communications Acquires tw telecom

Two wonderful companies are going to become one big awesome company. Colorado-based Level 3 Communications, Inc. and tw telecom, also based in CO, announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement, intended to qualify as a tax-free reorganizationwhereby Level 3 will acquire tw telecom in a stock-and-cash transaction valued at $40.86 per share based on market close as of June 13, 2014.

From their joint press release:

"The combination leverages the highly complementary strengths of the two companies to create a stronger, more nimble, customer service-oriented competitor to meet customers’ increasingly complex local, national and global communications needs."

I'm an agent in good standing with both companies. Have been for years. I have clients with services from both companies. For my small business clients, tw telecom offers better customer service. While Level 3 is a strong, good company, they are known for just showing up and doing their job and not for add-on services and customer service. For this reason, I hope the acquisition generates a gigantic tw telecom and not a faceless Level 3.

tw telecom CEO says the following in the press release:

September 2014 Business Phone and Internet Service Promotions

This month's business phone and Internet promotions are now up on our Current Promotions page. They include:

From Comcast Business:

Add a Voice Line with Comcast Business for only $19.95

This is great for existing Comcast Business Internet customers. Still using the old phone company for your voice service? Now is a great time to bundle in those voice lines and save.

Plus several promos from Integra Telecom:

  • Cloud Firewall Services
  • Business Connect Bundle + Security
  • Confidence Builder (i.e. new, low rates for high bandwidth in Fiber lit buildings)
  • Hosted and Managed SIP Bundles
  • Business Connect Bundles
  • Early Termination Credit Program from Integra Telecom
  • Hosted Voice Connections Bundle
  • Multi-Site Business Bundles
  • Go here for details on each

Sharing with you the most current telecom pricing promotions is just one way we work on your behalf. Contact us today for more details or to buy services now.


Who Hasn't Used An Expletive When Talking Telecom?

Have you seen this humor video? It's about how stuck we all feel when it comes to suffering poor service by residential high-speed Internet and cable providers. It's good for a laugh (warning, it includes an expletive). I especially like the part about the "barely trained technicians who knock once while you're in the shower and then promptly leave." 

Business customers can relate. Ever tried to run a business while waiting for a telecom technician to arrive sometime within the service install timeframe of 8 HOURS? It's maddening.

Business owners have the chance to demand an outstanding customer experience.

Unlike residential customers business customers aren't trapped. They have a choice, albeit limited, when it comes to their phone and Internet service providers (Century Link, Integra Telecom, Comcast Business, etc). That choice, however, seems somewhat false and exercising it just causes headaches. More empowering is the fact that businesses have a choice in how they buy telecom service. 

There are two ways to purchase and receive business phone and Internet service. Buy direct from the service providers (see headache comment above). Alternatively, businesses can chose to work with an experienced telecom broker and completely bypass the providers' sales process. When businesses choose brokers they change business telecom for the better. Here's how.

Vote with your dollar.

Telecom brokers work with all the service providers so you don't have to. And they manage the install experience, wielding an influential whip on your behalf. Brokers' services are usually free. Learn more about how telecom brokers are revolutionizing the industry here.

As the alternative to direct sales representatives, telecom brokers are sometimes referred to as the "indirect channel" in that they are another avenue for bringing in new customers. In this way, brokers have the ear of the telecom giants. More on that coming up, but first a disclaimer:

I'm a broker, so naturally I'm advocating for the buy from a broker route. But I'm also a business owner and I want better telecom service for my business and clients. Plus, I've worked the direct side of telecom as a customer care rep, telecom provisioner and sales person. I've seen the inner workings of the telecom giants. I know that what telecom brokers solve for the giants will ultimately mean more resources get put toward better sales support, more engineers and true product and service innovation. All that means happier customers and lower prices.

When you work with a broker you win:

1. A professional. The best brokers have years of experience. They exist to be your fierce advocate upfront and for years to come.

2. The best rates for the best products (brokers have access to all the same promo pricing, special deals and competitive maneuvering as direct sales reps, don't ya know). Here's how.

3. No B.S. Brokers work with all the 40+ telecom service providers, so you don't have to.

Read about additional benefits here.

High-speed Internet via fiber connections, 100 Mb to 1 Gb dedicated Internet connections, MPLS, hosted voice; telecom is business rocket fuel. Together, we can make sure that telecom customer service shapes up. Telecom has the chance to create an outstanding customer experience!

As always, if you have any questions about business phone and Internet service please call me direct at (206) 420-0140. I'm famous for giving away tons of free advice.

About Brian Wade

Brian Wade is founder and president of telecom brokerage, Caisson Technologies. He has worked in telecom for 15 years, including at Integra Telecom 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.

Toll Fraud On Rise, Buy VoIP System From Trusted Source

Toll fraud is on the rise. Just last month, one of my clients faced a $1,200 bill due to fraudulent activity on their phone system. Somebody hacked into their system by using a default user name and password for a conference phone and made hundreds of minutes of international calls.

Toll fraud is more common today because VoIP phone systems are more popular. VoIP systems can be hacked because they are connected to the Internet. The costs associated with fraudulent activity add up fast.

Digital phone systems can be hacked, too, but it's much harder and thus rarely happens.

Here are 2 ways to protect your business from toll fraud:

Fiber service is likely available at your location already

I was reminded again this week just how available Enterprise Fiber is to businesses in the urban core. It's very available.

This is due in part to cellular service providers, who had to build Fiber to provider 4G service to customers months or years ago. Cellular towers have had to go from T1s to Fiber as their data needs have grown. To do this, they've contracted with telecom providers, like Integra Telecom and tw telecom to get that Fiber built ASAP. Business customers that need fast Internet can tap into this network and get Fiber service to their business locations.

I'm working with a number of organizations on Fiber solutions at the moment, including one where we are splicing into a cellular provider's existing Fiber build. That's what made me think to send this tip to you. 

Want to know if your business's new or existing location qualifies for Fiber service? I can answer that for you. Just give me a ring direct at (206) 420-0140. Or, to learn more about my company visit: Caisson Technologies.

Confirm Your Contract Activation Date With Your Provider

When it comes to the term of your contract, telecom service providers go by service activation date, also known as contract execution date. They do not go by signature dates, contrary to what you might think. Always check with your provider's customer care department to get the contract start date that they have on record before considering changes to your business telecom products and services. Or call us. We'll help.

Caisson Revolutionizes the Way Businesses Buy Telecom

Indirect Sales Agents are an unconventional, benefits-driven solution.

Indirect sales agents are the alternative to direct sales when buying telecom. Also known as consultants or brokers, indirect sales agents sell telecom products and services through a strategic partnership offered by providers. However, they are completely independent from the provider and their services are free to business customers.

This is not resale. By partnering with providers, indirect agents gain access to the same promotional pricing, new product and service training and customer support networks that direct sales agent use.