The most effective fixed and mobile Telecom Expense Management (TEM) programs focus on the details. There are many smart people working in TEM, but managing procurement, sourcing, invoices, expense validation, usage chargeback, bill payment, and reporting requires knowledge of telecom, IT and finance. It also requires specialized software to integrate all these different components. The devil of TEM is truly in the details, and leveraging all the resources at hand is key to getting the best bang for your buck.
Most organizations have a telecommunications network that consists of an accumulation of legacy technology, services that are no longer used and unnecessary expenses. One of the challenges that Telecommunication Expense Management (TEM) programs can address is maintaining accurate and up-to-date inventory. TEM software can streamline this process and keep it current going forward.
Networks are dynamic with location moves, demand for additional services to support new personnel, changes from new communications technology and disconnect activity due to downsizing. Telecom assets require vigilant monitoring. All moves, adds, changes and disconnects (MACDs) of service or equipment should immediately be recorded to keep the inventory up-to-date and reduce expenses. This inventory will help TEM programs reconcile assets with invoices, and help identify unused services and items that can be removed from billing. These programs must start by collecting all telecom service providers’ invoices and Customer Service Records (CSRs).
With that said, CSRs do not capture wireless devices and mobile services. For mobile devices, phone numbers, billing and the names of the employees using them should be reconciled with HR records and kept in sync with the TEM application. Again with the devil in those details!
If there is no TEM program with asset management software to streamline work order activity, it is difficult to ensure that disconnect notices are properly entered and old services are removed from billing. After the initial TEM inventory validation is complete, it should be analyzed for further savings. Effective TEM programs can help identify equipment or services that are not associated with an employee, department, project or corporate location, and can therefore be discontinued.
TEM also provides better visibility into the budget and delivers the right mix of services for your needs. As the use of mobile services grows, more employees are working away from the office. TEM helps managers to quantify the impact on budgets, and this in turn allows companies to cut back on fixed wireline services that are no longer needed and frees the budget for spending on wireless services.
An effective TEM program, complete with the necessary software to back up these activities, will deliver the best possible outcomes for your enterprise: cost savings and efficiency gains. This is what separates the big-picture TEM manager from the big talker, and will help back up a manager chasing after that little devil of a detail.