Monthly Archives: February 2010
Businesses live this everyday and do not even realize it. Especially, when it comes to true telecom expense control. Albert Einstein once said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Think about this quote for a second and ask yourself if this quote applies to the way you run your company. Does this apply to the way you run telecom expenses? When was the last time you actually performed a telecom audit? If you are manually auditing telecom invoices and manually attempting to interpret your wireless or cell phone charges then you too could join the insanity club.
Knowing how much time your organization spends on telecom expense management activities is the first step in being able to reduce telecom expenses. Wouldn’t it be refreshing to have automated telecom auditing that takes industry best practices and proactively alerts you directly to a billing issue or cost savings opportunity? Being aware of your options is half the battle and will keep you OUT of the insanity club.
In my constant quest to grow and expand my knowledge I like to look for resources that I can refer to for our clients and for our company. Recently, I stumbled upon an industry expert named THINKstrategies. They provide On-demand strategic consulting services. Since Valicom recently announced the launch of our telecom expense management software-as-a-service (SaaS), Clearview, I have become more interested in educating myself on emerging SaaS offerings.
I have setup several different Google alerts to look for news and new offerings relative to SaaS. I was curious to know whether there were any directories that tracked software-as-a-service that would enable people to go to one place to obtain these types of technology solutions. I was pleasantly surprised to find a vast array of information about SaaS contained within THINKstrategies website. IT and Telecom professionals are always searching for better tools to manage their functions. I would encourage you to visit their site as a resource especially in your quest for more knowledge regarding Telecommunication Expense Management companies and to reduce business costs. There is constant pressure to do more work with less people and leverage the latest SaaS technology. Clearview® is one of those tools you should consider putting in your tool box.
What do you really know about Mobile expense software? In most cases, telecom expenses are not often reviewed in detail unless an executive within a company questions expenses or is reviewing and planning the upcoming year’s budget. Telecommunication technologies continue to emerge at a rapid pace which creates a challenge for Information Technology (IT) and Telecommunication departments to keep up. According to Answers.com, one of the definitions they list for education is “the knowledge or skill obtained or developed by a learning process“. There are a considerable amount of TEM companies out there that have the answer for you when you need to learn how to reduce business costs, achieve cellular optimization and implement cost reduction techniques.
In some cases, we have had clients that ‘do not know what they don’t know‘ in terms of telecommunication expense management best practices. For example, when a company enters into telecom contract negotiations themselves they may achieve a minimal cost savings for the business when compared to their existing contract. However, they may in fact leave money on the table when compared to what other companies are able to negotiate. Utilizing a TEM services provider like Valicom will provide the advantage of knowing what the best practices in the industry are, as well as the best pricing that leads to the ultimate cost savings for business. I am in the business of educating our clients and enhancing the telecom expense management industry. Ask yourself how you stay current regarding telecom cost management.
According to Forrester’s “SaaS your Application” webinar attended by Valicom in 2009, the Web 2.0, Collaborative Apps, CRM and web conferencing industries have the greatest Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) rate of adoption with the highest growth curve. There are other industries that are just now adopting SaaS models. Telecom Expense Management (TEM) and broader corporate expense management services were conspicuously absent from the research.
One measure of the potential growth in SaaS is that mass-market software companies such as NetSuite, Salesforce.com, Google, Workday and Microsoft have implemented platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offerings using cloud computing to integrate SaaS applications within similar or complimentary domains that can be accessed by their clients through their platform. As one example of how this integration works to serve clients, Valicom subscribes to Vertical Response (for e-mail campaigns) through our Salesforce.com application to enhance the functionality of Salesforce.com’s CRM application. This appears to be the wave of the future.
Clearview, Valicom’s telecom cost management software is addressing the needs of large and middle market organizations for an on-demand, self service application incorporating game changing simplification and best practices into our client’s TEM processes. Through this technology, telecom analysts are enabled to significantly reduce telecom expenses, and perform effective wireless expense management and telecommunications analysis. Contact us today for a Clearview demonstration. See you on-line!
When Valicom began in 1991, we were founded on the values of carrier independence, ethics, and integrity. Today, there are a small number of IT, finance or sourcing executives who express concern over telecom expense management (TEM) providers who are not carrier agnostic. Most companies seems to have a lack of education and awareness as to why carrier independence is important when working with a telecom expense management provider. There are several reasons why independence is important when hiring a TEM provider to perform telecom consulting services. Telecom expense control companies who are vendor agnostic will perform more thorough telecom audits because uncovering billing errors and finding other telecom cost reduction opportunities does not create a conflict of interest with the carriers. In addition, the choice of carriers and plans is done in the best interest of the client since there are no financial ties to the telecom suppliers.
Just as you wouldn’t hire a carrier to perform a telecom audit or recommend a telecom vendor it is not in your best interest to hire a TEM provider who represents a telecom carrier to provide cost reduction services or perform telecom contract negotiations. Telecom cost management providers who are not independent will be motivated to switch you to one of their carrier plans whether or not it is in your best interest. Many telecom expense management providers who are agents or resellers of wireless services receive activation fees for switching companies to the wireless providers they are representing and are not incented by your existing provider to perform wireless optimization services. In some cases, telecom expense management companies who are financially aligned with vendors do not disclose that they are receiving compensation from telecom carriers which becomes a matter of ethics.
I have always lived by the premise that feedback, positive or negative, is a gift. Having tools in place that enable an organization to manage better, or make better decisions faster is the key to obtaining feedback to identify the need for improvement. Telecommunication expense management (TEM) is a process. Due to the complexity and the speed in which technology changes and the way various services are billed to customers has made it imperative to have tools in place to properly manage their functions. The goals of having a telecom expense management tool in place will result in wireless optimization, wired optimization, and a reduction of data costs.
Partnering with an organization that has years of expertise, or obtaining software that will facilitate the ability to organize, maintain, and report vital information, is a requirement of all successful businesses. Regardless of the size of the business processes that are out of control need attention. The initial effort upfront to gain control can be significant, but will pay serious dividends and add to the bottom line. Once the initial effort is complete, the effort required to maintain is more efficient and effortless. Let your TEM partner provide the tools and train you on the techniques that take the complexity out of expense management. The main objective will always be to reduce cost and obtain telecommunication optimization. Provide the gift of increased profits and feedback to your organization.
Have you ever heard the above phrase before? You may have, but you’re not aware of who said it. This is a quote from Thomas DeMarco. Thomas DeMarco has a BS degree in Electrical Engineering and a Master’s degree from Columbia. He started his career with Bell Labs, participating in the development of the first large scale electronic switching system. Structured financial controls, telecom rates, and telecom inventory are all a part of a system which has to be measured to be controlled. Controlling telecom expenses to achieve true telecom cost reduction is essential to any business.
However, to be able to actually control a process the process needs to be measured to obtain visibility and identify any variances. Once an inventory can be organized and a process defined then the foundation is in place to begin measurement and control ultimately resulting in telecommunications expense reduction. Try this concept in your organization. You might be surprised how “You can’t control what you can’t measure” can lead you to sound telecom expense reduction.