How to compare leased line providersPosted on 30 September 2021 by Beaming Support
Your fibre leased line is an integral part of your business, so you will want to compare leased line providers to make sure your chosen ISP is able to offer you a service that reflects that.
If you don’t feel confident in your current leased line provider’s support, you feel you’re not getting value for money or you’re installing a fibre leased line for the first time, you may be overwhelmed by the large number of internet service providers out there.
These questions will help you narrow down your options as you compare leased line providers.
Here’s a quick checklist of the questions you should ask your potential leased line provider. Read on for full explanations of each.
Questions to help compare leased line providers
- Are you an ISP, a reseller or a consultant?
- How long will it take to install?
- What SLA can we expect on our leased line?
- Who will provide us with support?
- Will the leased line be uncontended?
- What will the upfront and monthly costs be?
1. Network provider, reseller or consultant?
This first question could help you reduce your list of potential leased line providers down substantially. Does the provider control their own network, do they re-sell another provider’s services or are they simply a consultant?
A provider with their own network designs and controls the way your data is carried across the network and has their own in-house experts to support you.
A reseller is a company or individual that re-sells the services of another provider.
A consultant will assess your requirements, then refer you to an internet service provider.
2. How long will it take to install?
This question is difficult to answer very accurately without knowing exactly what engineering may be required to install a leased line at your specific location, but your chosen ISP should be able to give you an idea of their lead times for fibre optic leased lines and explain any factors that may speed up or slow down installation. You’ll want an internet service provider that will take a proactive approach with Openreach (who provide most of the UK’s the physical internet infrastructure) and keep you up to date.
3. What Service Level Agreement (SLA) will our leased line come with?
It’s reasonable to expect that the SLA (the time it will take to repair a fault) on a leased line should be much shorter than on a broadband connection, for example. Find out what Service Level Agreement your provider will offer with the leased line and compare this with other potential providers. As a reference point, Beaming’s leased lines are monitored 24/7 and come with a 5-hour target fix time from when the fault is reported.
4. Who will be providing our support?
Every minute spent without connectivity will be losing your business money, so you don’t want to be hanging around on hold when it comes to leased line support. Does the ISP have its own in-house expertise or does it outsource calls? If you do have to call for support, will you reach an expert or be passed around a call centre to explain your problem to various people before landing on someone that can help?
5. Will the service be truly uncontended?
As we explain in this article, a leased line should be a dedicated connection used only by your business. In reality, some ISPs do cut costs by providing a contended connection – essentially shared bandwidth – across multiple connections at the same time.
6. What will the upfront and monthly costs be?
Any upfront cost for your fibre leased line will be determined by your business’s location and the amount of engineering required to connect you up. It’s quite possible that this could be free or much more affordable than you think. With a fibre optic leased line your data won’t be limited, you just choose how much bandwidth you’d like (your chosen ISP can help you decide a realistic amount; 100Mbps, 500Mbps and 1Gbps are popular options) and your provider will give you a monthly price. There shouldn’t then be any surprises on your monthly bill.
There’s a reason why we’ve placed this question last on the list. If your potential provider is unable to answer the rest of these questions to your satisfaction but happens to be the cheapest, the option represents a false economy. Equally, if you’re happy that the leased line provider has given the right answers to your questions and they also happen to have the lowest price, there’s no reason not to go with them. This article gives you a breakdown of how leased line prices are worked out.
With these six questions ticked off your checklist, you should be in a good position to choose a leased line provider for your business.
Why choose Beaming for your leased line?
Get in touch
Beaming is an internet service provider specialising in connectivity for business. With our own network, UK-based technical experts and a focus on security, your connectivity is in safe hands with us. Call us on 0800 082 2868 or fill in the form below to discuss your project-managed fibre installation.