You are probably paying your Telecom vendor too much.

Have you watched your Telecom expenses continue to increase despite there being no clear reason? Does your staff do all they can trying to decipher invoices and compare rates/terms and conditions yet each month you are certain you’re paying more than you should. Maybe you’ve had a staff reduction, yet expenses have not declined despite devices being decommissioned?

This is not uncommon.

When was the last time you got an email from a vendor full of their mistakes? Wait, I know. Never.

Vendors find all sorts of ways to finagle more money out of clients. Sometimes with what I like to call “Bill Suppressment”. I know that’s not a real word. I made it up. It sounds awful, because it is.

What does it mean? Let me explain.

How often do you look at a Telecom invoice and see line items like this?

invoice line item

 

What the…? That’s a lot of “Service.” But what are the ACTUAL charges behind this “Service” cost, not to mention those “fees” and “charges”?

 

What if I told you that that single line item likely contains numerous charges in error, charges that you know nothing about or charges you may actually NOT be liable for at all? Are you paying for staff and/or old circuits at locations that no longer exist? Has a system reboot or maintenance upgrade mistakenly reverted your charges to rate card, omitting your specific contract terms? These are just some of the reasons why you might be paying too much for telecoms.

Did you also know that even if you manage to download the invoice detail from your vendor, it likely won’t contain all the data you need. Sure, you’ll see some breakdown in detail, but it is still not complete or comprehensive. The ONLY place to find the itemized information for an accurate spend assessment is the raw data file. Obtaining the raw data file presents further challenges:

Picture this:

  • You call customer service to obtain the raw data on your charges and fees.
  • After what seems like several hours on hold, a customer service rep informs you that they are “not authorized to give you that file.”
  • So, you spend a great deal of time getting the run around, chasing various staff and “supervisors” in what becomes a tedious, time-sucking effort.
  • Eventually, you may or may not obtain the actual file.

It almost seems as though the vendors deliberately creating roadblocks just difficult enough to foster delay or inaction.

Why? Why would they do that? What’s in it for them?

It prevents clients from accurate waste identification.
It prevents clients from accurate inventory validation.
It turns invoicing into a powerful profit center.

Analyst firms estimate that 7-12% of all telecom charges are in error.

In the context of enterprise telecom spending, 7-12% can amount to hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars, every year. Of COURSE they are not going to make it easy for you.

Consider one final, critical thing.

  • You finally manage to obtain the raw data files.

Now, do you have the staff, the budget, the time and most importantly, the expertise to fight the often long and excruciating battles necessary to correct, reduce and especially refund, your spending?

The team here at Intelligent Bills has spent decades doing just that. Call us the vendor police, call us advocates or allies…call us crazy. But, if you find yourself struggling to decrease your IT/Telecom spend, call us. We can help.

About Kevin Wilson

Kevin Wilson is Intelligent Bills Principal Solutions Consultant and our master of client advocacy. He has a lot of opinions. You'll read all about them here.