A new survey has revealed almost half of businesses on the Northern Rivers are concerned about the NBN.
A new survey has revealed almost half of businesses on the Northern Rivers are concerned about the NBN.

NBN's 'lack of reliability' a major issue for businesses

DELAYS and disruptions in the NBN roll out are costing NSW businesses on average more than $9000, according to a survey by the NSW Business Chamber.

Regional Manager Northern Rivers, Jane Laverty, said was a concerning state of affairs when businesses were spending their hard earned money to upgrade their internet.

"These costs are unsurprising given 39% of businesses also reported having to wait more than four weeks to have their NBN service up and running, which is simply unacceptable," Ms Laverty said.

Of the 850 businesses who responded to the survey, 42% of said their NBN service was unreliable.

"Expectations are not being met and for many of our businesses who operate from a regional area this lack of reliability is a major issue," Ms Laverty said.

NBN Connection server down:

Owner of Wardell Hydroponics, Fiona Grant, said she was concerned there was a fundamental flaw in the system after battling with NBN connection for over 10 months.

"It concerns me enormously that they are promoting their service all around rural areas and they must know it is neither fast nor reliable and yet they are advertising that it is, I think that is unethical," Ms Grant said.

She said whilst her connection was down her business dropped back on productivity and efficiency costing them dearly.

"You basically lost all confidence in your ability to work reliably because it would drop out and you would lose information you had, entire files, data and programs would shut down."

No NBN Connection:

Founder of StartInno Coworking & Innovation Hub, Dr Dan Swan, said he "needed it here yesterday."

"It is preventing our growth we are not necessarily technology hub, but show me a business these days that doesn't use technology is some way shape or form," Dr Swan said.

"We are a regional hub, so the whole point about working remotely and regionally is that we are supposed to also be able to connect not only nationally with our customers but also internationally."

He predicts that if the region does not receive a reliable NBN connection in the near future it will have a detrimental effect on the economy of the region.

"If we want businesses to come in to invest in our region and diversify our economy, we need NBN otherwise we will be uncompetitive."

Poor NBN connection:

Regional Manager for Northcott Disability Services, Kim Davis, said poor connection is affecting the ability of staff to assist customers most effectively.

"It affects the reliability and the continuity of the service, it also then affects the productivity of the staff," Ms Davis said.

She said the organisation was looking to trial teletherapy so families could live stream services from their specialists.

"Because those poor speed rates are so bad that is actually unavailable which means the families then would have to travel to a regional town centre to get the therapy they need."

Recently connected:

Managing Director of Go Grow, Bruce Beesley, said his biggest concern being connected to wireless NBN was network deterioration.

"My fear is as they add additional homes and or businesses to this network it is going to get worse and worse," Mr Beesley said.

He said when he connected to the wireless last year it wasn't what he expected.

"My main concern is purely if we were to maintain around 10mb per second download it would be fine for us but it wasn't what we were told we were going to get."



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