The Network Reliability Framework (NRF) is a safeguard for Telstra residential and small business customers who have up to five fixed telephone services. The framework complements the Customer Service Guarantee (CSG) which ensures that faults are repaired within reasonable time frames. The purpose of the NRF is to:
improve consumer awareness of overall telephone service reliability;
improve the operation of poorly performing parts of, and services in, the Telstra fixed telephone network, particularly in regional and rural Australia;
improve community confidence in reliability of Telstra’s fixed telephone network; and
empower the Australian Communications and Media Authority (the ACMA) to enforce reliability and remediation requirements.
The NRF commenced in 2002 following findings of the Telecommunications Service Inquiry in 2000. The NRF is a licence condition placed upon Telstra by the Carrier Licence Conditions (Telstra Corporation Limited) Declaration 1997.
The NRF has three levels of operation. The first level examines the general reliability of fixed telephone services in different regions of Australia, while the other two levels are concerned with identifying localised areas and individual services that do not meet minimum levels of reliability.
Level 1 — national and regional performance
Level 1 of the NRF requires Telstra to publish monthly data on the reliability of services nationally and in 44 different regions (known as field service areas) across Australia. The two measures of reliability are:
the percentage of services that do not experience a fault
the percentage of time that services were available (that is, not waiting for repair).
Telstra’s publishes Level 1 performance data on its website.
Level 2 — localised area performance
Level 2 of the NRF reviews the performance across Australia of disaggregated parts of the network known as cable runs – sets of 10 or 100 copper wire pairs within a physical cable sheath. Telstra is required to identify the 40 lowest performing cable runs each month. These are assessed over a 6 month period against a criterion of a 90 per cent decrease in the volume of average network events. Failure to achieve a 90 per cent reduction in this measure results in closer scrutiny by the ACMA, as well as further remediation and assessment.
Level 3 — individual service performance
Level 3 of the NRF examines individual service performance. Telstra must act to prevent any service from experiencing more than three faults in any rolling 60-day period or more than four faults in any rolling 365-day period. Telstra is required to report to the ACMA on any services that breach these thresholds. Telstra will undertake remediation work on any service that breaches these thresholds to improve its reliability.
NRF performance data
Analysis of Telstra's performance against the NRF is included the ACMA's annual Communications Report. Previously released reports are available for download.