Idiot's Guide to Simultaneous Provide Orders

The following information has been written by Kayak after his experiences of moving house and his adsl connection. Reproduced with his kind permission.

Idiot's Guide to Simultaneous Provide Orders

Simultaneous PSTN/ADSL Provide Orders (SPO for short here) are intended to allow you to move house without a break in service. If you try to carry out the move any other way then there will be a break in service since your ISP will need to wait until the new line is connected before ordering ADSL on it. They will also work if you order a new line with ADSL at your existing address.

The orders however are fairly complex and prone to error on the part of BT and/or the ISP. Hopefully these instructions will help others to avoid the experience I went through.

How it Works

When you ring BT 150, you are speaking to BT Retail, who can set up BT's end of the order (the PSTN end) and flag it as an SPO. When you ring your ISP, they can set up their end of the order (the ADSL end) and flag it as an SPO.

Both BT and the ISP need to inform BT Wholesale, who provide the ADSL kit in the exchange, but the two orders need to be tied together with a reference number. This reference number will be either BT's order number or the ISP's, depending on which you ring first. You can ring BT first or the ISP first and they will give you their reference number to give to the other.

First of all ask your ISP which way around they want you to do it as they will be used to one way rather than the other (if you're unlucky they'll be used to neither way).

First BT, then the ISP

If your ISP ask you to ring BT first, ring 150 and ensure that at the very beginning of the conversation you ask to place a simultaneous order for the provision of a phone line with broadband (when they enter the order they need to select the correct option at the beginning, and if you mention it later they will either start again or ignore your request). Obviously you will also need to tell them whether you are moving home, i.e. ceasing your existing connection at the same time.

BT will ask you for the name of your ISP and will check that it accepts SPOs. They will then ask you whether you have a reference number from the ISP. Even if you have been given a reference number by your ISP, DO NOT give it at this point or the whole thing will fail. This is because if BT are given a reference number, their system will assume that the ISP has already set up an order with BT Wholesale and will not set one up.

After they have taken you through the PSTN order, they will give you an order number. Before you ring off, ask them to double-check that the detail of the order specifies the simultaneous provision of an ADSL service. If they can't see it in the detail of the order, it isn't there and they need to cancel the move and start again.

You can and should also look up the order number on BT's web site, http://www.bt.com/business/ordertracking, preferably while you're on the phone to BT. (If you don't have an account at BT.com, register by going to http://www.bt.com and clicking on "At home" and then "Register Now"). When you display the detail of the order it should say 'BB/PSTN SIM PROVIDE' amongst the items listed.

Then go to your ISP with the BT order number and place the ADSL order with them. They will key the BT order number into a system provided by BT Wholesale to check it, and they will then place their own order with BT Wholesale, tying it into the BT part of the order using the BT order number.

First the ISP, then BT

If your ISP decide to take your order first, give them all the details and they will give you their reference number to pass to BT.

If you have a ticket type system showing the progress of the order, check that they have sent an ADSL order to BT Wholesale before you ring BT. The BT Wholesale order number will be in the form 1-xxxxxx where x is alphanumeric and may appear on the ticket, but is not the one to pass to BT.

Then ring BT 150 and ensure that at the very beginning of the conversation you ask to place a simultaneous order for the provision of a phone line with broadband (when they enter the order they need to select the correct option at the beginning, and if you mention it later they will either start again or ignore your request). Obviously you will also need to tell them whether you are moving home, i.e. ceasing your existing connection at the same time.

BT will ask you for the name of your ISP and will check that it accepts SPOs. They will then ask you whether you have a reference number from the ISP. ENSURE THAT YOU GIVE IT at this point or the whole thing will fail. If you start talking about the detail of the PSTN order and realise that you have not given the reference number, it is too late and you will need to get BT to start again.

After they have taken you through the PSTN order, they will give you an order number. Before you ring off, ask them to double-check that the detail of the order specifies the simultaneous provision of an ADSL service. If they can't see it in the detail of the order, it isn't there and they need to cancel the move and start again.

You can and should also look up the order number on BT's web site, http://www.bt.com/business/ordertracking , preferably while you're on the phone to BT. (If you don't have an account at BT.com, register by going to http://www.bt.com and clicking on "At home" and then "Register Now"). When you display the detail of the order it should say 'BB/PSTN SIM PROVIDE' amongst the items listed.

After all that

If you have a ticketing system, check that the two ends appear to have been tied together, otherwise ask by telephone. Some of the tying together might happen overnight.

Then sit and wait and hope :)

Article last edited on Tuesday, 09-Mar-2010 13:05 PM