The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2006-12-13T00:30:00Z COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE LAUNCHES VOIP CUSTOMER BOOKLET 2006-12-13T00:30:00Z communications-alliance-launches-voip-customer-booklet Communications Alliance today launched a new booklet designed to assist consumers and small businesses who are considering a VoIP service for their home or office.The 28-page booklet was developed by Communications Alliance with substantial input from industry representatives on its VoIP Working Group and was launched at the organisation’s third annual VoIP Forum in Sydney.The booklet advises potential VoIP customers on the questions they should pose to service providers and offers basic information about the various types of VoIP services on offer in Australia.Titled “So you want a VoIP phone service?”, the booklet takes readers through “The seven steps to VoIP” under the following chapter headings: * Why do you want a VoIP phone service? * Things to consider * Ensuring that your broadband is up to it * Deciding on a VoIP service provider * Connecting it all up * Using your VoIP service * Customer service and your rightsCommunications Alliance CEO Anne Hurley said the organisation had conducted extensive consultation on the needs of VoIP customers and identified lack of information as being the most significant issue.“There is no doubt that the past year has seen a huge surge of interest in VoIP but that trend has been accompanied by widespread confusion and lack of knowledge about the full implications of installing VoIP in the home or office,” Ms Hurley said.“This customer booklet is aimed squarely at filling the void by providing objective, independent and easy-to-read information about VoIP services for consumers and small businesses.”Communications Alliance has published a hard copy version of the booklet which will be available free of charge to VoIP customers and potential customers.A soft copy can also be downloaded from the Communications Alliance website by clicking on the following weblink : www.commsalliance.com.au/projects/voipIn addition, Communications Alliance plans to make available copies of the booklet to VoIP providers so they can assist people who inquire about VoIP services.About Communications AllianceCommunications Alliance was formed in 2006 to provide a unified voice for the Australian communications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services.Although Communications Alliance has its genesis in the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN), it is a new organisation created specifically to drive the industry into the future with confidence, vitality and strength of purpose.In pursuing its goals, Communications Alliance offers a forum for the industry to make coherent and constructive contributions to policy development and debate.By providing leadership on new trends and directions, Communications Alliance fulfils a vital unifying role on behalf of the industry and its members, particularly in areas of competition, innovation and industry development.The prime mission of Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE SELECTS CHAIRMAN 2006-12-04T16:32:13Z communications-alliance-selects-chairman The newly elected board of Communications Alliance has chosen Neville Stevens as its independent non-executive Chairman.Mr Stevens was Chairman of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) when it joined with the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN) to form Communications Alliance on September 1 this year. He has since occupied the position of Co-chairman of the transitional Communications Alliance board with former SPAN Executive Chairman John Kranenburg.Mr Stevens said he was looking forward to being at the helm of the first elected Communications Alliance board as it charted the future direction of the new industry body.“We have a group of extremely capable directors on the new board and I have no doubt that we will be able to make a valuable contribution to planning the growth of our industry,” Mr Stevens said.“I would also like to thank John Kranenburg for the tremendous effort he put into ensuring the success of the merger of our two organisations.”About Communications AllianceCommunications Alliance was formed in 2006 to provide a unified voice for the Australian communications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services.Although Communications Alliance has its genesis in the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN), it is a new organisation created specifically to drive the industry into the future with confidence, vitality and strength of purpose.In pursuing its goals, Communications Alliance offers a forum for the industry to make coherent and constructive contributions to policy development and debate.By providing leadership on new trends and directions, Communications Alliance fulfils a vital unifying role on behalf of the industry and its members, particularly in areas of competition, innovation and industry development.The prime mission of Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE ELECTS BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2006-11-20T22:12:37Z communications-alliance-elects-board-of-directors The new board replaces the transitional board which came into effect following the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN) on September 1. The transitional board consisted of the existing directors of both organisations.Four new directors and 13 existing directors will sit on the new board following the postal ballot of Communications Alliance members which closed at 5pm last Friday. The new directors are Ilkka Tales, CEO of engin; David Gee, Marketing Director of Lucent; Chris Althaus, CEO of Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA); and Robyn Ziino, Regulatory Manager of AAPT. Ms Ziino replaces the previous AAPT board member, David Havyatt. The remaining directors are: Warwick Broxom, Telstra; Brian Currie, Hutchison Telecom; Rob Durie, AIIA; Raj Jayawardena, PowerTel; Maha Krishnapillai, Macquarie Telecom; Phil Lipschitz, Commander/RSL Com; Tony Malligeorgos, Ericsson; Dennis Muscat, Pacific Internet Australia; Roger Nicoll, Primus Telecom; Noel Robertson, MatrixView; Georgia-Kate Schubert, Vodafone; Rosemary Sinclair, ATUG; Gary Smith, Optus.The new board will hold its first meeting on December 1.About Communications AllianceCommunications Alliance was formed in 2006 to provide a unified voice for the Australian communications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services. Although Communications Alliance has its genesis in the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN), it is a new organisation created specifically to drive the industry into the future with confidence, vitality and strength of purpose.In pursuing its goals, Communications Alliance offers a forum for the industry to make coherent and constructive contributions to policy development and debate. By providing leadership on new trends and directions, Communications Alliance fulfils a vital unifying role on behalf of the industry and its members, particularly in areas of competition, innovation and industry development.The prime mission of Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. MOBILE NUMBER PORTABILITY SCHEME CELEBRATES FIFTH ANNIVERSARY 2006-09-29T15:55:00Z mobile-number-portability-scheme-celebrates-fifth-anniversary Australias world-leading Mobile Number Portability (MNP) Scheme has celebrated its fifth anniversary this week, with latest figures showing very few complaints. Communications Alliance, which administers the scheme, said MNP had been responsible for over five million successful ports (mobile number transfers) since its inception, with a monthly average of 85,000 ports. The latest available figures, for the June quarter, accounted for 442,794 ports where customers transferred their mobile phone service from one provider to another. Of that number, there were only 155 complaints logged by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman, a rate of 0.035 per cent. Australia was a pioneer of MNP and we are still setting the benchmark for the efficiency with which our mobile service providers co-operate in helping their customers move to a competitor, said Communications Alliance CEO, Anne Hurley. Mobile number portability involves a raft of very complex technical and commercial challenges that require ongoing consultation and cooperation between all parties involved. In developing our MNP Scheme, Australias telecommunications industry established worlds best practice processes and we have continued to refine it so that customers can transfer between service providers quickly and efficiently. In such a highly competitive industry that is often unfairly characterised as uncooperative, we are entitled to be proud of the success of MNP. About Communications Alliance Communications Alliance was formed in 2006 to provide a unified voice for the Australian communications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services. Although Communications Alliance has its genesis in the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN), it is a new organisation created specifically to drive the industry into the future with confidence, vitality and strength of purpose. In pursuing its goals, Communications Alliance offers a forum for the industry to make coherent and constructive contributions to policy development and debate. By providing leadership on new trends and directions, Communications Alliance fulfils a vital unifying role on behalf of the industry and its members, particularly in areas of competition, innovation and industry development. The prime mission of Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE PUBLISHES NEW FACT SHEETS DESIGNED TO IMPROVE THE WAY COMPLAINTS ARE HANDLED 2006-09-27T14:40:00Z communications-alliance-publishes-new-fact-sheets-designed-to-improve-the-way-complaints-are-handled Communications Alliance today announced it had published four new fact sheets addressing complaints processes and consumers rights to information about telecommunications services. Two of the fact sheets are aimed at communications service providers (CSPs) and VoIP providers, promoting best practice behaviour in relation to the way they handle customer complaints. They also remind CSPs and VoIP providers about their obligations in relation to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO). In particular, the fact sheets counsel CSPs and VoIP providers about the most effective way to work with their customers and the TIO to resolve complaints. The fact sheets point out that the TIO regularly reports a high number of breaches of the Complaint Handling Code, and emphasises that dissatisfied customers should be informed about their right to escalate unresolved complaints to the TIO. The third fact sheet provides a more detailed explanation of the Complaint Handling Code and sets out the complaint handling rules and timeframes for dealing with various types of complaints. The fourth fact sheet is aimed at consumers, telling them about the type of information they are entitled to receive or request about their telecommunications service. It lists the information under the various categories that form the lifecycle of a customer relationship -- from the initial inquiry about a purchase, through the purchase process and until the relationship ends. Communications Alliance CEO Anne Hurley said the rationale behind the fact sheets was to encourage best practice by service providers and, by doing so, improve customer satisfaction. Our discussions with the industry and the TIO have confirmed that many of the complaints about breaches of the Complaint Handling Code can be traced to lack of knowledge by service providers about the rules for handling customer complaints, Ms Hurley said. We are also concerned that many consumers are unaware of the type of information they are entitled to receive or request about their telecommunications services. In each of these scenarios, lack of adequate knowledge appears to be the root cause of many problems. So Communications Alliance is attempting to fill that information void with easy-to-understand fact sheets that are readily available via our website. The Ombudsman, John Pinnock said: The TIO is a strong supporter of Communications Alliances initiatives in consumer and industry awareness. The fact sheets are an important addition to this work. The facts sheets can be downloaded by clicking on www.commsalliance.com.au About Communications Alliance The Communications Alliance was formed in 2006 to provide a unified voice for the Australian communications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services. Although the Communications Alliance has its genesis in the merger of the Australian Communications Industry Forum (ACIF) and the Service Providers Association Inc (SPAN), it is a new organisation created specifically to drive the industry into the future with confidence, vitality and strength of purpose. In pursuing its goals, the Communications Alliance offers a forum for the industry to make coherent and constructive contributions to policy development and debate. By providing leadership on new trends and directions, the Communications Alliance fulfils a vital unifying role on behalf of the industry and its members, particularly in areas of competition, innovation and industry development. The prime mission of the Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. For further information see www.commsalliance.com.au