PTCL – How to Revive the Dying Horse

ptcl_logoIn mid 90s, every advertising company used to target Pakistan Telecommunication Company for getting onboard. For the purpose, advertising companies used to homework for weeks ahead of appearing for final presentations before PTCL.

PTCL for a long time remained a very attractive client along with CBR (Now FBR) Wapda, Central Directorate of National Savings and Ministry of Information as no company like Mobilink and other telecom giants were on the scene.

Due to size of media by PTCL and monopoly PTCL distributed its different campaigns among Midas, MPL, Interflow and Orient. These big companies were very keen and worked hard to get PTCL prequalification competition.

But, now if we look at the company what they have is very rare print ad and TV commercial on the media. While all the news papers and TV channels are occupied by the Mobile companies. They have huge advertising budgets and a motivation to expand and modernize their services. Now Cellular companies have hired experts of international repute and they are doing well and testing new tactics to get more share of business.

On the other end PTCL was first dragged by the confrontation of workers and the government on privatization and then between workers and Etisalat. Before 2001, getting a job in PTCL was considered a pride with attractive salary and other benefits but after privatization it is no way near to that mark. Though PTCL administration has recently revised the packages of the workers, but the glory is a gone thing for the company and its workers now.

Though we understand that wired communication is facing downfall worldwide, but PTCL’s revenues have seen a significant decline which is for sure more than of global trends.

The only hope for the revival of company is internet and value added services with committed work force. PTCL has a chance of diversifying its channels from basic wired telephony to a variety of services including IPTV, broadband internet and wireless telephony and internet. This is what global landline giants are doing… they are shifting their core products from wired telephony to other areas.

During the last year, PTCL has tried its best by offering long local calls and free long distance calls through Pakistan package. Now I would like to suggest the following initiatives to improve the image and standard of services of PTCL.

  • Zero line Rent or Free local calls
  • Termination of workers on poor performance
  • Award for excellent performance
  • Expansion of network in rural and urban areas.
  • Rapid response on client complaints.
  • Refresh courses for higher management.
  • Giving the equal status to Pakistani workers as of Etisalat.

We know that PTCL tried well to rebrand itself, with tagline “Feel the Defference” but it was really not felt amongst the masses. If truly followed the spirit, there is no reason that PTCL can again become the most revenue generating company of Pakistan.

We have already had an experiment of National “Highways and Motorway Police” with new spirit and commitment. These personnel’s were mostly rejected from the police department and when they were offered an honorable status, professional training, good pay, they are the best force of Pakistan. Capital Police is another success story.

This type of strategy is also required for the revival of PTCL otherwise ….

Let’s prey and wish a success for the past pride of the nation to a new journey of success.


  • Salome Khan

    PTCL has come a long way but surely it has a long way to go. With the slow ‘wrap up’ of ancient telecommunication technologies and the advent of new ones, the company is fighting tooth and nails to keep afloat. The Broadband arena too is posing to be a tough field as competitors keep pouring in – LinkdotNet and other companies have joined the race and with the rumors of a WiMax project in the air, it surely seems as if PTCL will have to further shape up.

    Recently, an interesting point in PTCL marketing was their ‘dial-up is free’ ad campaign in newspapers. They show three women of various edges gathered around a laptop, seemingly enjoying the free dial-up. One has to wonder…hasn’t the laptop brigade already moved on to broadband? Makes one wonder. :)

  • Fahad

    As far as PTCL’s ‘lack’ of marketing is concerned, here’s a fact for you: PTCL has the largest expenditure when it comes to advertising in print media. they’re responsible for over 3% of the entire expense in the print media industry’. here’s the resource: http://www.brandsynario.com/PrintMediaSpend.aspx

  • Asad Khan

    PTCL cannot rise with its present management.They are bent on crushing the employees, saving money and above all, how you can propser if you have a Finance person heading your HR? Finance people save money and HR people save people but spend money.

  • TARIQ J QURESHI (TQ)

    Asad has a very valid point. There has to be a balance between performance and price paid for it. I was in PTCL for a short period, and came in with a understanding that the salaries & benefits will be upgraded to market scales within 3 months. Thoes 3 months stretched into a year, and I finally left as it was not worth it.

    Another problem was that the ‘old’ PTCL guards, thought they were masters of PTCL and did new people a favor by letting them in. There is still a lot of resentment in career government like employees and new intake.

    Yes, Asad is right, Mazhar is a finance person was good at his real profession and a misfit as e VP-HR. But I assume he was being groomed by the CFO who inspires to be the CEO and hopes Mazhar will be his left hand man and CEO after him. Unfortunately PTCL is a dying horse, and news a new fresh blood all over. Lets hope for the best. Key change needed in not just the leadership but the mindset, mindset to serve, instead of govern as it always was.