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What the Data is Telling Us About This Week’s Phone Outages

September 30th, 2021
4 Min Read

Despite widespread phone challenges, incoming calls are down 5% week-over-week on average; Outgoing calls are down 8-9%. But the light at the end of the tunnel looks near.

This week, there’s a good chance you’ve either experienced intermittent phone disruptions or read about them in the news. Many customers first started seeing phone and VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) degradation last Saturday. After a brief fix, phone challenges resumed early this week. So, what exactly is going on?

Bandwidth, an underlying carrier that provides VoIP services to hundreds of organizations including ServiceTitan, Zoom, RingCentral, Dialpad and others, experienced a DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack this week. Unfortunately, this created intermittent disruptions to phone and VoIP services across the country, including 9-1-1 calls. We understand how frustrating this is—phones are the lifeblood of your business.

Current data shows us that many customers are doing fine, while some have been impacted more broadly. Gratefully, we are now hearing from many of you in the field that despite these intermittent issues, nobody is incapable of running their business. But we won’t rest until each and every ServiceTitan customer is fully operational.

We are in constant contact with the Bandwidth leadership team, and will continue to pass along relevant updates to our customers as they come in. To that effect, we crunched some internal product data we have aggregated and anonymized to get a better understanding for what type of impact Bandwidth’s outages are having on ServiceTitan customers.

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Finding #1: We compared incoming call volumes to reference levels computed using the previous week’s data and seasonal variations between weeks derived from 2020. Incoming calls are behind reference by about 5% since Saturday:

Finding #2: Outgoing calls were hit hard earlier in the week, but have leveled off back to (almost) normal:

Finding #3: Outside of a small sample size anomaly on Sunday, completed job volumes have been impacted minimally:

So what do these numbers actually mean?

Basically, degradation issues were pretty bad over the weekend and into Monday, but metrics appear to be improving across the board. We’ve spoken at length with leadership from Bandwidth, who have communicated that they expect the worst is behind them. 

New changes in Bandwidth’s mitigation strategy appear to confirm this—as of 6:22 am PT on Thursday, September 30, Bandwidth’s status page details that teams are observing expected network behavior with successful call completion. Likewise, Inbound and Outbound Calling Services are listed as “operational.” But despite these incremental improvements, outages are fluid. We will share an updated analysis on the data we’re seeing and how it could impact your business next week.

We understand and appreciate that any number that includes a negative sign in front of it can be extremely disruptive to business. Every minute that goes by during an outage is a minute where you aren’t able to respond to important service requests, dispatch a technician to a job, or address an emergency at a client’s home. 

ServiceTitan continues to exhaust all options to mitigate the impact for every customer.  

Are you dealing with phone issues? Check out this article in the Contractors Playbook, which details 11 ways our customers have overcome phone outages to keep their business moving. In the meantime, we are committed to providing you with everything we can to help mitigate the current situation. If and when we have additional data to share, we’ll be sure to do so. 

We thank all of you for what you do every day, for us, for your teams, and for the country. Situations like this make your job harder, but we’re working to collectively get back to a steady state so that you can continue the amazing work we all rely on.

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