Porting Numbers

I'm beginning to plan for the installation of four new PRIs. I have

473 DIDs in 10 blocks that will need to be ported from my current CLEC (Cox Communications) to MCI over a short amount of time. I want to avoid a situation where my customers can't receive calls during working hours. Plus I don't have enough DS-1 cards in my switch to have the existing PRIs plus the new ones all connected at the same time.

The MCI implementation coordinator says that they can't start the port before 7am, or work after 6 pm or on weekends. I'm not confident that I can get a one-hour maintenance window starting at 7 am on a weekday. I know if I were one of my customers, my first response to this proposal would be "No, it sounds too risky." The coordinator also says that if they don't successfully complete the port the first time, the CLEC requires 5-10 days to reschedule it.

Is this the way porting is typically handled?

Does it usually go perfectly the first time around?

Do you expect that this can successfully be done in an hour or less?

If it can't be completed on time, what are my roll-back/recovery options?

-- Bob Simon remove both "x"s from domain for private replies

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Bob Simon
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Depends upon the size of the customer. The bigger the account, the bigger the clout. Their no overtime rule sounds like either you don't swing a big enough bat or you're not dealing with the right person at MCI.

My experience is it doesn't. Your mileage may vary.


Once started your best option is to proceed, regardless of how long it takes. However, you need to get a firmer committment from MCI that this is a 'must-fly' and they will see it through start to finish.

Secondly, however much it costs to purchase a few extra PRI cards and get them installed in your PBX will be worth it and you will be perceived a hero. Contact the secondary market equipment resellers. They can save you a bundle on the spare cards and may even have a deal where they will temporarily rent the needed cards to you.

Our experience porting numbers is the local exchange generally gets it right, but the inter-exchange carriers (the LD companies) can take as long as an entire week to begin routing your calls correctly.

Bottom line is number porting is never a good idea unless there is an

*extremely* compelling reason for doing so. Never step over dollars just to pick up dimes. Never lose sight of the fact that if your phones suddenly stop working, you are out of business. What is that worth to you? Maybe you're going to save "X" dollars, but what value of business do you risk if it doesn't go well? In my opinion if you cannot afford the PRI cards to cover your ass then you probably cannot afford to do it.
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