Looking ahead with iiNet’s new CEO


I am honoured to have the opportunity of writing to you as iiNet’s new Chief Executive Officer.

Before I continue, a little bit of information about myself. I’m a devoted dad to three great kids and I juggle my CEO duties with my other career as coach to my son’s soccer team. I commenced at iiNet as Chief Financial Officer in 2008 and since that time I’ve not only enjoyed the challenges of the role, but I’m also proud of iiNet’s massive growth in that time.

In following on from Michael Malone in the role of CEO, I know I’ve got big shoes to fill. Michael founded iiNet, and until March 2014 was the company’s Managing Director and CEO. Michael has been an omnipresent force for the internet in Australia.  Since founding iiNet in a suburban Perth garage in 1993, he has maintained a drive and passion for the internet that has been unrivaled.

Continuing our focus on customer service

Michael stayed true to the mantra of always providing excellent customer service above all else. He taught us well and I intend to make sure that awesome service remains the core goal of everything we do.

Our experienced and engaged staff continue to dedicate all their efforts to delivering fantastic, internationally-recognised results and service for our customers.

The strength of our customer service focus was again recognised via a number of industry best-service awards during the past year including:

  • Global Business Excellence award winner for 2014 – iiNet picked up three big wins including Outstanding Customer Service Team, Outstanding Customer Service Initiative and Outstanding Blog;
  • ICCSO International Service Excellence award winner 2013 – iiNet picked up the Large Business award; and
  • Customer Service Institute of Australia (CSIA) awards – iiNet picked up 10 awards including National Winner for Large Business, WA Winner Service Excellence in a Contact Centre, and WA Customer Service Team of the year for Techii.

The largest provider of telecommunications services over the National Broadband Network (NBN)

Not only was iiNet the first telecommunications company to be ready to operate in an NBN world, we have quickly become the largest provider of telecommunications services over the NBN with over 40,000 customers. As you would know, there have been some changes to the NBN with a change of Federal government, yet the current plan of using a mix of existing and new technologies continues to offer significant opportunities for iiNet’s customers.

Indications are that the current plan will enable a faster rollout, opening new markets and providing a level playing field, letting customers to continue to enjoy the internet and telecommunications services which iiNet provides.

The future for iiNet and our customers is undoubtedly exciting, and it’s great to be part of such a great company. It may be an understatement, but I’m excited to be here for the years ahead!


  1. Rob Carlyle says:

    I have been an iiNet customer for almost 5 years. In the beginning, I would have characterised your customer service as outstanding. In recent days, I would characterise your customer service as very good. What I think you have lost is the wow factor. I recently renewed my contract, but the options offered had nothing I needed. I was looking for some imagination and to be wowed, but no real style, no wow factor. Don’t get me wrong, iiNet still has great customer service, but I would love to see the wow factor return.

    • Malfunction says:

      @Rob Carlyle, sad but apparently true Rob, and David has shown why by claiming “internationally recognised results……”.
      IMO this is the cause of the decline, try running a few teams without NPS and watch that “outstanding” (Westnet type) culture return. Too many complaints of “staff lying” to just say they’re isolated incidents with 1M clients when the only other another claim to fame is 40K NBN. Never mind the kids UK soccer, what about some of that UK Virgin hype ……?

    • Nicolette Mellor says:

      I too have noticed the drop off in customer service. I used to recommend iinet to anyone who asked because the staff were always so friendly and helpful. I feel like in the last six months I’ve been stabbed in the back – honestly, after thinking so highly of iinet the service I have received is so bad it’s like being betrayed.

      I’ve been an iinet broadband customer for two years, and before that had good old dial up for several years. My service wrongly disconnected in February this year, and after weeks of being hand balled (thanks guys!) I finally cracked it and demanded it be reconnected. I was then informed that because it had been so long since I was disconnected, my port had been given to someone else and there was no others available. IiNet’s lazy customer service means that I have had no internet for six months now. Disgusting.

      • Jen McKenzie says:

        Hi Nicolette,

        That’s really disappointing to hear, and understandable that you’d be feeling that way after your experience. While we can make mistakes, it definitely sounds like the ball was completely dropped here.

        In this case, you might want to take advantage of our complaints escalation process: for further investigation. This will ensure these circumstances are looked into by a senior representative or manager to see how this could have occurred, make sure any staff delaying this being fixed originally are followed up with, and alternate solutions are being looked into for you while a port isn’t available.

        – Jen

    • Dr Lakshmi Kumaratilake says:

      @Rob Carlyle, I am a long time, devoted customer. At the begining I lost a lot of money because of lengthy times (months) taken by Telstra to fix problems. Those worked in Australia to listen to our grievence were absolutely hopeless. In spite of this, what kept me stick with you is the great service offered by the support teams especially NZ, South Africa and relatively recently Perth teams. Please understand your strength
      Is the good intentions of your staff. Wish you all the best.

  2. Judith says:

    It’s the service that sets the Iinet Team apart – particularly their attitude which is warmly helpful, not arrogant and sometimes funny! They call me “Aunty” because I have been with Iinet forever.

  3. Ingrid Thorniley says:

    Congratulations on your new role David.
    Well deserved!

  4. Jeannie Hodkinson says:

    Congratulations on your new position!! Please make sure that iinet stays as the absolute best with customer support and help, which is why we have stayed with iinet for around 15yrs and have recommended it to so many people.
    We just can’t fault iinet service over the years. So very pleased to hear that Michael has taught the importance of customer support:-)

  5. I have now been an iinet customer for almost 17 years and am still very happy with the service.

  6. Judy Atkins says:

    Pls think of adding mobile phone calls to your NBN plans. We have been asking for these since we joined your company. Others are offering them.

  7. Susan says:

    As a senior who is not wowed by technology as I must admit I don’t understand most of it! I have been very satisfied with my iinet for me the internet is my window to the world and as long as things stay the same for me ie the service is as good then I am sticking with you.
    I wish you well Rob in your new position
    Best Wishes Susan

  8. Martin Radford says:

    Until about 18 months ago I always gave iiNet a 10 out of 10 score to the question “How likely are you to recommend iiNet to a friend or family”. Now I would give a 0 out of 10 and in fact will be seriously looking for another provider when my contract expires.

    It seems that a “she’ll do” attitude is now endemic in iiNet. Over the past 18 months every time I have had to deal with iiNet there have been stuff-ups. Unlike the sales division the technical staff can not even format their technical status reports properly.

    Even today when I clicked on the “Know your NBN” and “Looking ahead with iiNet’s new CEO” links in the Newsletter I got:

    The connection was reset
    The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading.

    I tried a bit later and they worked.
    Why oh why can’t iiNet technicians get things right.

    • Jen McKenzie says:

      Hi Martin,

      That’s definitely not the kind of service experience we want our customers coming away with, especially given it sounds like you were pretty happy with the service previously.

      We have some steps in place to try and iron out areas where poor service is being provided, and make sure we get things right the first time in future. Filling out the customer feedback surveys that are sent to your email after a call can make sure that staff are kept on the ball, as this is sent directly to them and their manager to improve and work on anything that’s lacking in the service provided.

      If you feel front-line staff aren’t doing the best they could be, you can also always ask to speak with a senior representative or make a formal complaint as per our internal escalations process: to ensure your concerns are being appropriately handled, and that you are receiving the quality of service you should be.

      – Jen

  9. Bernie Morellini says:

    Just a little “burr in my saddle”. I have been a member since 1993 (ozemail was brought out by iinet sometime in the early 2000’s). However I am only credit as being a member since ozemail was brought out by IInet. Can I please have recognition of my membership adjusted to when Ist joined ozemail…PLEASE
    Yes your Service is fantastic and the Staff in South African office a just superb. Cheers Bernie M

  10. Maureen says:

    I have been an iiNet customer for 20 years. I have always been happy with your service. I always feel as if I am a very valued customer. thank you & good luck.

  11. Pierre Prentice says:

    Rob, you may be on to something. I signed up to iiNet’s services for the first time about 6 months ago. Great service when on-boarding me, but when I queried information I was given in that process (which it later transpired was incorrect), do you think I could get an answer? Three unanswered emails to Customer Service, and an unanswered letter to the queen of customer service, Chelsea Gray who may be just mythical. Beats me how iiNet won all those customer service awards.

  12. Hal says:

    Since 11 May 2014 (and the demise of “One Seniors”) I have been trying to be a satisfied customer of iiNet. I think we are getting there but the service has been a bit slow in understanding and solving my problem. That problem centred on the fact that service and cost provided, has not aligned with that agreed on at the time of commencement with iiNet. The communication within iiNet leaves a bit to be desired where the customer service “phone people” do not know what the customer service “email people” are saying and vice versa!
    We will persevere for a bit longer!

  13. Rick H says:

    If only the above was true, since our connection to your services we have had nothing but issues, poor service both in the delivery of your products and the assistance provided trying to resolve issues.

    Like every big company you have lost the ability to provide quality of service, poorly trained staff with an inability to be empathetic.

    While I sit here typing this message I have been online waiting for one of your personnel to do a simple check on why you are over charging us for your services.

    Such an ongoing waste of my time.

  14. John Ferris says:

    Initially with AAPT, now iinet,for seven years.
    A basic internet user.Mainly e-mail,browsing
    and downloading programs to try has
    the right bundle at a good price for all that I
    need.Service when I have had problems (all 2 of
    them) has been excellent.

  15. Garratt says:

    I agree with Rob, I first signed up with iiNet back in the day when you guys and Internode were the only decent Counter Strike servers in Australia.

    Both companies had amazing support but more importantly, speed and connectivity.

    When i first signed up speed was exceptional. Now a few years later it is below mediocre.

    On naked adsl, literally a stones throw from the exchange in inner Brisbane suburbs. (2 blocks away). I’m lucky to hit 1mb D/l when I should be getting 12.

    Calling support abotu the issue always results in, “your modem is probably too old at 3 months”, or “it’s probably your copper wires, we can send Teltra out but it will cost you”.

    So yeah, support is now subpar.

  16. David says:

    I too have been a customer for years. I live in the last property on an edge of town line maintained by Telstra. The property is also a fairly “dead zone” for wireless comms.
    I have lots of problems due to the above factors but I still find the customer service from iiNet to be excellent and they manage to keep me going. To be honest, wow factor is of little importance to me.

  17. Josh says:

    Having been an iiNet customer since OIS was purchased by Michael Malone in ~96/97 I’ve been pretty happy with the service and minimal outages. Other services like the Linux mirrors via the FTP site, 3FL gaming servers, and more recently FetchTV & excellent value mobile phone plans (I’m only paying $10/mth!) just provide added value. When I compare my multiple phones, FetchTV, ADSL to friends who use Telstra Bigpong, iiNet ALWAYS comes out WAY in front.

    Big shoes to fill David, very big shoes indeed… of which I’m sure you’ll do well. I look forward to the next major technological instalment iiNet will bring to my household! Maybe a FetchTV slave box for secondary / tertiary TV’s? That would be nice!