Chorus has completed 100,000 mass market fibre connections, as demand for fibre continues to grow across New Zealand.
“Demand for fibre continues to be extremely high and addressing these challenges remains mine and Chorus’ number one priority,” says Mark Ratcliffe, CEO, Chorus.
“Meaningful progress has been made during the last few months, both within Chorus and in collaboration with our industry partners.”
In May, Chorus announced the company was taking a number of steps to improve the fibre installation experience, as the demand for fibre became mainstream.
According to Ratcliffe, the changes include increasing the number of fibre crews, taking greater ownership of fibre forecasting and establishing a new contact centre to confirm appointments and ensure customers have the full picture of what to expect during an installation.
As a result of the progress made, Ratcliffe says Chorus built about 8,000 new fibre connections nationwide in November, compared to about 6,000 in September - this is the highest number of connections Chorus has completed in a month.
For Ratcliffe, this has meant the median time to connect for single dwelling units and multi-dwelling units has reduced, and cancellation rates have also “dropped significantly”.
“One of our biggest challenges is recruiting people quickly enough to meet the ever-growing demand for fibre, and training them to deliver installations that are very much as complex as adding any other utility to a property,” he adds.
“It takes between three and six months to train a new fibre technician, as it requires a wide range of skills. It then takes another six months for the technician to become fully competent and productive.”
As demand looks set to grow even further, Ratcliffe says Chorus will continue to recruit and train as “fast as we possibly can”.
“While I am pleased with the progress that has been made with our overall changes, clearly there is still more work to be done before New Zealanders’ experience meet expectations,” he adds.
“There will be no let-up in focus from Chorus until we are consistently meeting demand and delivering a high-quality experience.”