JPMorgan Chase has announced that it will save approximately $3.2 million per year by eliminating voicemail services for 65 percent of the 136,000 employees that work at its consumer banking unit. JP Morgan is not alone. Bank of America and Citigroup are also planning to cut back on voicemail service. The Coca-Cola Company has also reduced its use of voicemail at its headquarters to lower costs and simplify work for employees that do not interact directly with clients.
At a recent investor conference, Gordon Smith, head of J.P. Morgan’s consumer and community banking unit, said “We realize that hardly anyone uses voicemail anymore. We are all carrying something in our pockets that’s going to get texts or email or a phone call.” He also indicated that the company spends nearly $10 per month per employee on voicemail service.
How people use this telecom technology is changing rapidly. One popular tweet by Amy Brown illustrates this. Her ranking of the ways for people to get in touch:
ways to get in touch with me, ranked: 1. text 2. facebook chat 3. tweet 4. email … 998. skywriting 999. smoke signals 1000. voicemail
— amy brown (@arb) June 5, 2015
This news presents some important lessons to consider. First, organizations are still seeking to cut telecom expenses by any means necessary. Second, TEM programs provide focus on billing accuracy and other areas, but analysis of the data from usage reports may lead to important findings. Third, it is important to consider that any change that seems dramatic at first, may actually not present a radical shift for employees. It is within these sensible changes that telecom managers will find ways to come up with big savings and process efficiencies for the organization.