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December 09, 15:43

Moving a TDC ADSL line (a survival guide)

TDC serves more than 100.000 ADSL customers, so you'd think they had basic procedures down, like moving a line from one location to another. It's an all digital operation that doesn't require a visit by a technician. But oh no. Since Wednesday, I've been told eight different stories as to what my problem is:

  1. "I don't know what's wrong, tech will make it work by Thuesday"
  2. "We have registred your move twice — that's why it doesn't work"
  3. "It doesn't work yet? That's strange. It should! Must be on your end"
  4. "Of course it doesn't work. You have the Wrong ADSL modem. Get another one at our store"
  5. "It doesn't work because you have the old static IP address. I'll update it now and it'll work in 5-15 minutes"
  6. "No, no, we only update the IP table once every day at noon. It'll work at 12:00"
  7. "You should be getting the new static IP address. I'll have some one call you in 1-2 hours"
  8. "There was a problem with the new static IP, I'll give you a dynamic one for now"

Annoying, yet revealing. When moving an ADSL line from one address to another, you need to:

  • Possibly get a new modem: Some centrals use equipment that's only compatible with the SpeedStream modem. If you have an old Siemens setup, it needs to be replaced. This replacement is free, but requires a trip to the TDC store.
  • Have your static IP changed: This doesn't happen automatically on an move order.
  • Ensure no duplication in the move order: This is not something that's immediatly visible to the call-center operator, so ask them to check for it specifically.

Just as importantly, you need to know what not accept:

  • No timeline on problem resolution: There's always a timeline, but you won't be given one before applying pressure. You can use this timeline to expedite resolution on subsequent call.
  • Wait on emails written by the call center to operations: The call center can call the operations department directly if they feel the issue is pressing enough. Make them do that and call you back afterwards.
  • That the problem is on your end: This is a cop-out when the call center doesn't immediatly knows what to do about the problem. Have them walk you through their tutorials on what to do, and when they fail, force them to escalate the issue.

It's also important to realize that you're responsible for collecting all the information and fixes needed to resolve your problem. It's like stiching your own solution quilt together from a dozen patches. TDC call-center staff is trained to resolve calls, which is all about getting you off the line as soon as possible. There's no overarching issue management.

The lack of issue management is bad for customer satisfaction and bad for business. The average cost of handling a support call is around 40 kr. The cost of my ADSL subscription is 15 kr. per day. So my eight calls have cost 320 kr. and the week of refundable downtime amounts to 105 kr. That's more than 400 kr. that the lackluster handling of my move order have cost TDC. On top of that, my willingness to switch provider has been greatly amplified.

I'm now officially a discontent customer. Say, doesn't those Tele2 deals look pretty good?

Challenge by Rasmus on December 09, 16:09

Sure, they _look_ good, but you only need to spend five seconds in or #dailyrush to discover that you'll probably get around 32 kbps on a 2mbit line, and that their tech support is complete and utter shit.

I don't have ADSL myself, but I've heard enough whining and bitching from angry Tele2-customers to know that they are the last place you'll want to go for a new ISP.

Challenge by Rasmus on December 09, 16:25

Oh yeah, stay away from Tiscali as well. They're bitches and refuse to make peering agreements with the other Danish ISPs and route through London instead of the DIX, meaning that trafic from Tiscali users counts as international trafic, which is f'ing expensive - so expensive that some Danish websites (as you probably know, since Daily Rush is one of them) have shut off certain features for Tiscali users - if not entire sites.

Challenge by David Heinemeier Hansson on December 09, 16:44

It does indeed seem like Tele2 is a lottery. But from what I've read and personal experience with TDC, it doesn't seem like it's more a lottery than precisely TDC. Plenty of people are reporting no problems with their lines. And I'm certainly willing to gamble a little to get a four times faster connection.

Challenge by Fafner on December 11, 13:01

I'm a happy CyberCity customer.

Challenge by Guan Yang on January 20, 15:57

Isn't the correct lesson from this story that you shouldn't try to move an ADSL line, but simply order a new line at the new address and eat the setup charges?