A challenge facing the telecom expense management channel is the increased sophistication of our clients. And mind you, a “challenge” is not a “problem”. Having a better educated, more informed marketplace has always been a goal at Valicom, as we feel the more we all know, the better we can serve each other and our end user customers.
The challenge instead lies in offering a flexible service model, so clients have the option to manage the pieces of the telecom landscape they both can, and want, to handle themselves while still providing back office support to take on tasks they prefer to outsource. Some TEM providers can’t address this shift in the market as they are locked into a full “lifecycle management” model, where you get the whole enchilada – or you go hungry.
A preferred model would be more “a la carte”. Some Telecom Managers may have an in house team that is perfectly capable of running monthly invoice audits, but don’t want to deal with the data input issue of getting all that invoice information into a software tool. Or maybe they want to outsource bill payment, having someone else cut the checks. Some may just need someone to help write an RFP, and then show up with a big stick when it is time for telecom contract negotiation.
A flexible TEM vendor can provide all, or some, of the services you need, when you need them. So when you’re hunting for a telecom expense management partner, look for one with a taco bar, instead of a one size fits no one model from the 90s. An ideal solution should be someone who provides options ranging from “you do it yourself” to “we do it together” to “we do it for you”. Then you always get what you want, even if what you want changes as your in house capabilities increase or decrease over time.