The 7 Benefits of Telecom Expense Management

29 May 2024 | Posted by Cass Information Systems, Inc.

When investigating the potential business benefits of telecom expense management, it’s easy to hyper-focus on immediate cost savings.

However, telecom expense management, also broadly known as communications expense management or technology expense management, provides a range of other benefits that are well worth considering. Seven of them stand out from the crowd.

The 7 Benefits of Telecom Expense Management

1. Cost Control

It's difficult to understand and navigate the rate structures that make up the average telecommunications estate. Even if your in-house teams do this, managing the influx of monthly invoices is a time-consuming process that leads to:

  • Billing errors
  • Overcharges
  • Missed payments
  • Late fees
  • Shutoffs

Luckily, telecom expense management can help with telecom cost reduction. By developing a comprehensive view of your telecoms estate, your chosen telecom expense management partner will claim chargebacks and credits on overpayments or inaccurately applied invoices on your behalf.

They can also identify and eliminate discrepancies in the short term. This means the obsolete resources or services discovered in a telecom expense audit, that might've accrued charges over time. Once they've rectified these issues, your chosen partner will help you extract maximum value from the remaining assets. They do this by:

  • Ongoing cost allocation
  • Eliminating process inefficiencies
  • Regularly auditing your estate to prevent overcharges
  • Identifying issues with your existing contracts, such as incorrect rates or previously disconnected circuits
  • Automating basic processes to improve productivity
  • Guarding against future billing issues

2. Avoid Downtime

Identifying potential telecom billing management errors isn’t only about avoiding late fees or hidden charges. Paying bills on time each month is equally important to avoid service outages.

Service outages cost money in wasted working hours and productivity. But, the impact on your reputation is just as important. Customers and investors might think twice about working with you if they begin to question the stability of your internal telecoms infrastructure.

This is a concern for consumer retailers with stores nationwide. If their payment systems or telecom lines go down because of an unpaid or misapplied payment, this seriously disrupts their business. For example, they might not be able to use payment registers.

Considering that most businesses payment or telecom services in their day-to-day operations, outages present a very real threat to organizations in almost every industry.

Curious about the state of telecom expense management in 2023? Read the latest  Gartner Market Guide to learn more.

3. Optimize Your Telecom Inventory

A telecom estate features tens of thousands of individual assets and services. So, a DIY expense management software solution to manage expenses isn't viable. You need to manage competing demands of fixed-line infrastructure, mobile, and bring your own device (BYOD) programs, while also negotiating the contracts and invoices that accompany them.

Additionally, your resources might need scaling depending on the situation. Setting up additional fixed-line infrastructure for a newly opened branch or switching to a brand-new service plan, for example. 

This provisioning activity, known as MACD (move, add, change, disconnect) creates a moving target for organizations looking to optimize your costs. It also makes it difficult to maintain efficient operational processes and align existing telecom infrastructure with strategic goals.

A carefully configured telecom expense management solution, on the other hand, optimizes your telecom inventory management process.

First and foremost, it accurately tracks MACD activity, comparing services with associated invoices to neutralize any lingering discrepancies. This ensures enterprises only pay for the services they use, minimizing the risk of costly inaccuracies. Continuous telecom expense audits help you achieve a clear understanding of your telecom environment at every level, even those that operate across multiple continents and time zones.

4. Manage Your Mobility Environment

Managed mobility services (MMS) are an important component of a  comprehensive telecom expense management service. Not every telecom expense management provider offers it, so it's beneficial to look for one that does. Here's why.

Investing in an MMS partner is vital for managing costs. A partner can use their expert knowledge of the telecom market and compare prices using accurate, reliable benchmarking during the telecom procurement process. This helps your business secure favorable terms on mobile contracts and gives your employees access to the right devices.

Additionally, an MMS partner can negotiate terms, coordinate deployment, and manage conditions on your behalf. This saves your team time and effort that they can reinvest into more productive areas.

As part of their standard service, most vendors will provide unified endpoint management (UEM) to configure mobile devices for your end-users. It encompasses software, settings, and apps. UEM spares employees the hassle of setting up their brand-new smartphones, and this is important for security and compliance. Additionally, UEM facilitates the administration of devices, servers, and the data stored therein from a single console, improving visibility and security.

5. Lifecycle Support

A telecom expense management partner can provide comprehensive lifecycle support when it comes to telecom provisioning.

Managing and maintaining a vast telecom network over time is challenging given the ever-shifting nature of the environment. Aside from ongoing bandwidth requests, your organization has to account for:

  • Moving locations
  • Company acquisitions
  • Divestments
  • Replacing and recycling old, outdated circuits

Encompassing fixed-line infrastructure, the end-user devices that form your BYOD program, and everything mentioned, a reliable telecom expense management solution helps you locate the services and resources best suited to your operational needs.

Additionally, a telecom expense management partner can help negotiate service contracts, ensuring you get the most value from your entire telecom estate.

Optimized provisioning includes:

  • Securing sufficient bandwidth

  • Disconnecting unused or obsolete resources

  • Helping you understand waiver conditions 

  • Finding the best deals on your mobile devices 

  • Composing accurate bid requirements for your chosen vendors

The abundance and diversity of services and devices make it difficult for internal teams to make an informed decision when negotiating with new and existing carriers. So a telecom expense management partner relieves internal teams of yet another administrative burden, saving them time and energy that would be better concentrated elsewhere.

6. Regional Compliance

It's vital you maintain compliance in the areas your business operates in. For example, some countries require full, end-to-end encryption when transmitting data on a global scale because global telecoms is complex. Others might specify that encryption keys must be submitted upon completion for security purposes.

Unsurprisingly, organizations that are unfamiliar with the subtleties of regional regulation can violate local mandates without even knowing it. This can result in fines and penalties.

Telecom expense management vendors that operate globally can mitigate this confusion. They have in-depth knowledge of telecom expense management and the regulations surrounding it, and in-region resources that are well acquainted with country-specific regulations. This helps your global business stay compliant, wherever you operate.

7. Expert Guidance

Telecom infrastructure and software rates are often complex structures that demand multi-year commitments from their users, and a telecom expense management partner can help you manage them.

With these tasks being managed by specialized experts, your team can focus on other higher-priority and revenue-producing internal projects.

A multinational manufacturing conglomerate achieved $5.1 million in savings within three years of partnership with Cass.

Choose a Trusted Telecom Expense Management Partner

A telecom expense management provider has expert knowledge and experience of operating within the telecom environment. They can help streamline costs, manage change, and consolidate an ever-growing inventory of resources and services.

Acting as an extension of your existing team, a best-in-class, global telecom expense management provider offers the kind of reliable, 24/7 support to help you keep on top of their communications network.

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Topics: TEM

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