Hopefully, this time it’s good news! This morning, the Spark Foundation team advised that all pipeline modems (i.e. ones you have received from Ingram Micro during the last few weeks) have now been checked and provisioned for Jump. There are only 12 modems that have been issued to customers that have not been correctly provisioned; the Skinny team is contacting these customers individually to sort this out.
If any partners do receive a returned modem (they will only be B618s) that has been issued during the last few weeks and is causing problems for customers, please use the Returned Modems form to get it reset and provisioned correctly.
Please contact us immediately on email@example.com if you discover any further modems that have not been provisioned for Jump. Please provide the IMEI number of the modem concerned. Thank you.
We thought this issue had been resolved, but partners are still finding modems shipped over the last week or so that have not been provisioned for Jump. I appreciate that this is incredibly frustrating and I have escalated again to the team in the Spark Foundation.
However, until we can be absolutely sure that things have returned to normal please use the process outlined in my previous blog on this matter, i.e. if you discover a modem that has not been provisioned for Jump, please use the Modems Return form to alert the Skinny Support team. The Support Team will arrange for the modem to be reset and provisioned for Jump. As this is a slightly more complex process than simply delinking and resetting, Skinny has asked that the modem not be reallocated for 2 days.
1) Set-up the online account with the customer. Once it’s set up, go into the Dashboard to check if the plans available are Jump or regular 4G Wireless Broadband.
2)If it’s regular 4G Wireless Broadband (not Jump), use the JUMP Modems Return form:
https://www.tfaforms.com/rest/forms/view/4864829 and in the section “Other”, write “Please provision as Jump modem”. In the ‘Broadband number box’ you may enter the SIM ID number instead. The SIM ID is the 17 digit number, starting with 64052…, printed on the outside of the box. Like the IMEI number, this comes with a barcode, so if you have a scanner, this is areal breeze to enter in the form.
3) This generates a case in Skinny’s queue which they can then escalate to their Operations Team.
4) Wait 2 days before re-issuing the modem.
It is clear from an analysis of the ‘faulty modem’ and ‘returned modem’ forms that there are different interpretations of these terms, so here’s my attempt to explain this more clearly.
REUSE: When a modem is returned by a customer, our first objective is to get the modem reset remotely so that it can be reused. So provided the modem:
(1) has not been reported as faulty; or
(2) is not physically defaced or damaged; and
(3) has all its bits (modem, power supply and ethernet cable)
this should be treated as a Modem Return. By completing the Modem Return form, the modem will be reset remotely and become available for re-issue (reuse). You will receive an email confirmation when the modem is reasdy for re-issue, or with other instructions from the Skinny Support Team. This normally happens the same day.
REPAIR: This is what we want to happen when a modem is faulty, and the Skinny Care Team has advised the customer to return the modem to a Jump partner and get a replacement. In this case, Partners should complete a Faulty Jump Modem Returns Form. Our objective is to send the faulty modem for repair; completing the form will result in a courier bag or label being sent to Jump partners for the return of the modem (as an aside, we know some of you have been waiting for some time for the courier bag/label to arrive; we aim to clear the backlog within the next week).
RECYCLE: This is perhaps where most of the misunderstandings are occurring. We are using the term ‘recycle’ to mean that the modems will be disassembled and the various materials separated and then sent for the manufacture of new products. ‘Recycle’ should not be confused with ‘Reuse’. Very old modems or ones that have been physically damaged or defaced, or ones that have parts missing are most likely to be assigned to your recycle box. When you have 5 or 6 modems ready for recycling, get in touch with Shelley (firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0800 463 422) and she will send you a courier label for the Jump recycler.
Now that is hopefully a bit clearer, a huge thank you to the partners who are following the new modem return processes. Since 5 January 2021, 250 modem return forms have been completed – that’s over $30,000 worth of modems that are able to stay in use. We have also received just under 100 Faulty Modem forms; we have assessed 68% of these as ‘faulty’. The other 32% are either suitable for reuse (and the Return Modem form should have been used) or should be assigned to the recycling box.
We were advised today that the issue concerning modems received by partners in the last week not being provisioned for Jump has been resolved. As we suspected, a mistake had been made by Ingram Micro and modems were distributed without being provisioned for Jump.
The problem has not only been fixed for future shipments but all modems shipped without being provisioned for Jump have now been updated remotely.
However, the Spark Foundation has asked us to contact customers who received a B618 modem from an Ingram direct shipment on 15 and 16 March to make sure they can see the Jump dashboard with the initial 30GB of data. We will refer details of anyone who can not see the Jump dashboard (as opposed to the Skinny one) back to the Foundation for them to manually load the initial 30GB.
If you have modems returned because of this issue,please use the modem returns process to get them delinked and reset.
The Ministry of Education has recently sent a letter to households with school students who received a fully-subsidised Jump service during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdowns. The letter explains that the offer has been extended for the 2021 school year until December 2021.
Some of these letters have been inadvertently been sent to households who did not require the modem and have already returned it as part of a recovery programme that we have assisted the Ministry with. Please explain to these families that there is nothing they need to do. They will not receive any further letters from the Ministry.
Families who still want to activate their modems are encouraged to contact a nearby Jump partner for assistance. If they bring their modem to you, please support them in the same way that you would for any other new Jump customer (only in this case there is no need to supply a modem).
Families who no longer require the modem are encouraged to return it to a nearby Jump partner; please accept the modem and complete the online MOE Modem Activations & Returns form; we will send you a courier bag to return it to us.
I have had a number of partners contact me today expressing concern about modems they have recently received that were not provisioned for Jump. As explained in my blog yesterday this has just been brought to our attention and we immediately raised a red flag with Spark Foundation. They advised late this afternoon that they have implemented a solution which will take about 24 hours to take effect and agreed to provide an update tomorrow.
Partners who have experienced this problem when issuing modems might be asked to contact affected customers to confirm that modems issued during the last few days have been correctly provisioned. As we be able to assist with this as most customers provide a phone number in their Profile Forms.
There is no need to take any action at this stage, at least until we get an update tomorrow.
On 22 February, we transferred to a new delivery process to get modems to partners. Since the start of the Jump programme, we (DIAA) have provided a national distribution centre for Jump modems to partners; modems have been couriered to us in large quantities (up to 500 at a time) and we have arranged distribution to partners in more manageable lots, typically 5 or 6 or at times up to 14. This gave us the opportunity to scan the IMEI number of every modem distributed into your individual Google registers.
For over a year, the Spark Foundation has been working with their Jump modem supplier (Ingram Micro) to try and streamline this process by shipping modems directly to Jump delivery partners and this was finally implemented on 22 February 2021.
But unfortunately, all is not yet well.
(1) We no longer have access to the individual IMEI numbers of modems being shipped, which means we need to use ‘dummy’ numbers in your GSheets to indicate that modems have been ordered. When we receive Profile Forms, we replace the dummy numbers with the actual IMEI number. Some partners have decide to do this themselves and that is fine if you have a bar code scanner, but it is almost impossible to record these numbers accurately if you are entering the numbers manually. If you do want to do this, please enter the IMEI numbers in Column W ;the IMEI number in column D (grey shaded column) will automatically update, as this is formula driven. You must also overwrite the dummy numbers – these are easily recognisable by their short form, typically 862901 – 862910. We hope to sort this soon and get access to the IMEI numbers at the time of shipment.
(2) Some modems are being returned to sender (Ingram Micro) because of inadequate addressing. This is simply human error by Ingram Micro, when they incorrectly key in shipping addresses. We would appreciate a photograph of any courier labels that do arrive with you, but with an incorrect address. Hopefully this will improve over time if we keep referring incorrect address labels back to Ingram Micro.
(3) Some partners are receiving Skinny modems that have not been provisioned for Jump. This means that when you try and set them up, you will get an unfamiliar dashboard response. And of course they can’t be used as is for the Jump service. If you discover one modem like this in a box, then it is highly likely that all the modems in the box will be like this. These can be remotely provisioned for Jump. Please scan the Proof of Purchase document that comes with every Jump shipment to us (email@example.com) and we will arrange for the modems to be provisioned correctly ready for issue.
We think it is worth persevering with the new modem distribution process as this is more efficient in the long run. We just have to fix the glitches along the way. So please get in touch with us whenever you discover something that doesn’t appear right.
Carla from Motueka Library has discovered a box of B618s without user guides. This is a mistake by the supplier. Every modem should be supplied with a User Guide (as pictured below) – this is same for both the B315 and B618 modems. Customers must have one of these to remind them how to connect their device to the WiFi when they get home and how to top up when their first 30GB data is used.
We are making efforts to procure some spare Guides so that you can issue these if you ever discover a modem without one. In the meantime please print a copy from the digital file on the Stepping UP website here.
Sally Ann Hardwick from Helensville Library raised an interesting point this morning and this made me realise that others might also be confused. Sally had read by blog posts from earlier this week (made my day to know that someone reads them!) and she was following my specific instructions by requesting a Sims courier label to return modems for recycling that had been returned prior to 5 January 2021 (the new procedures date for ‘modem returns’).
However, when I discovered that the returned modem had only been issued on 30 November 2020, I thought this should be managed under our new ‘de-link and reset’ procedures rather than sent for recycling.
So, I think there is a need to revise my instructions to provide more flexibility:
(1) Any returned modems that you are holding (whether they were returned before or after 5 January) and look to be in an OK condition – with packaging, power supply and ethernet cable – should be treated as potentially available for re-issue. You should use the Modems Return form to get the modem de-linked and reset, ready for re-issue.
(2) Any returned modems that are dirty, defaced or have missing parts should be treated as faulty, and you should use the Faulty Modems form.
Thank you to Jo Cocker from Te Manawa Library in Massey Auckland, who was the first to discover a glitch with the new faulty modem process that took effect yesterday. The tiny URL for the Faulty Modem form was linking to an old version of the form; needless to say, this has been fixed. But we do appreciate this sort of feedback. As one of our famous Wellington retailers (LV Martin) used to say “It’s the putting right that counts!”.
So, to summarise the new process:
- Customers must contact the Skinny Helpdesk Care Team (0800 475 4669) if they suspect their modem is faulty; the Care Team will attempt to resolve the fault remotely, but if they can’t, they will advise the customer to return their faulty modem to a nearby Jump partner and pick up a replacement. The Care team will also initiate an internal Skinny process to de-link the faulty modem from the customer’s account (this means that by the time the customer arrives at a Jump partner to get a replacement modem, the modem will already be de-linked and the customer can use their same email to set up a new Skinny account with the new modem).
- For customers who for any reason are unable to visit a Jump partner, e.g. rural location, disability or otherwise house-bound, the Skinny Care Team will log the fault report with DIAA and we will send a return courier bag and replacement modem to them.
- When customers turn up with their faulty modem, Jump partners must complete the Faulty Jump Modem Returns form. There is also a link to this form on the Stepping UP website in the drop down Jump menu.
- Customers must use the same email address to set up a new Skinny account and they will then be able to transfer any unused credit balance on their old account to their new account. Note that customers can only use the same email address after the faulty modem has been de-linked, which is why this process is now automatically initiated by the Skinny Care Team when the fault is first reported.
- There should be no need for partners to email the Skinny Support Team (firstname.lastname@example.org) to make a request for modem de-linking.
- All faulty Jump modems (B315s and B618s) are now to be returned to Telegistics, where efforts will be made to repair them; those that cannot be repaired will be sent to Sims for recycling.
- When DIAA receives a completed Faulty Jump Modem Returns form, we will send a pre-addressed courier label to the Jump Partner for sending the modem to Telegistics. Our goal is to send Telegistics courier labels at least weekly, so if you have more than one faulty return in any week, you can box them and send them together (the courier costs of sending 5 or 6 in a box is less than sending a single modem in a satchel).
- If partners are holding any B315s for recycling, that you received before 5 January 2021, these can still be sent to Sims for recycling. Please contact us on email@example.com and we will send you a Sims label.
Any questions or clarifications about the new process, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org