BT Openreach told off by BBC Watchdog

BT’s Openreach has been given a stern telling off by consumer affairs TV show Watchdog for the lengthy delay some customers have experienced waiting for their new broadband phone line.

BT's Openreach has been given a stern telling off by consumer affairs TV show Watchdog for the lengthy delay some customers have experienced waiting for their new broadband phone line.

Anne Robinson and a presenter from Rogue Traders scolded BT Openreach for the ongoing delays and its poor communication skills. One new homeowner featured on the show was told they would have to wait seven months for the service to be installed.

The Openreach division currently maintains BT's network of phone and broadband lines, which also carry services from operators such as TalkTalk and Sky Broadband. It may be buckling under the pressure of a wave of new customers, something the company alluded to in a statement after the show was aired on Thursday.

Part of the statement read: "We are trying to minimise the types of problem identified by Watchdog by - for example - recruiting more people. We have been recruiting 2,400 new engineers in the last six months alone. We're also carrying out a full investigation into the cases raised by Watchdog, and will use the lessons we learn to try to do better in future."

It's the not the first time that Openreach has been mentioned on the programme - it was featured last year in similar circumstances. The company has now set up a website to improve feedback channels and to help customers see how connection is progressing.

Openreach's push to hire new engineers was already in motion before the complaints, as it tries to meet new requirements set out by Ofcom's Quality of Service standards.

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