Talk Isn’t Cheap

Vendor-neutral telecom analysis from IPC experts helps customers eliminate waste and improve service.

The telecommunications marketplace is notoriously confusing. Complex billing practices, hard-to-understand contracts, billing errors, late-payment penalties and other factors contribute to ballooning costs. Furthermore, industry surveys consistently show that organizations typically lack any kind of formal program for auditing contract compliance — an oversight that routinely leads to overpayment rates ranging from 3 percent to 10 percent.

Given the an increasingly important role telecom carrier services play in today’s technology environment, that level of waste is simply not sustainable. To effectively manage critical connectivity for customers, mobile employees, remote offices, offsite data centers and the cloud, organizations must take steps to collect critical information, organize the data, manage spend and reduce costs.

That’s why it is important to periodically evaluate voice and data connectivity services and consider alternatives that can improve performance and availability while reducing costs. Periodic reviews can also help ensure that you aren’t paying for unneeded services and that telecom providers are meeting contractual SLAs.

Call on the Experts

Organizations that lack the time or expertise to conduct such analysis can turn to IPC for help. IPC employs telecom experts who can conduct a thorough audit of existing carrier services with an eye toward simplifying the environment and reducing costs.

“We take a vendor-neutral approach is designed to minimize complexity and ensure that you’re getting the best bang for your buck,” said Jeff Andrews, Executive Vice President, IPC. “We’ll analyze your phone bills and recommend services that deliver better performance at a lower cost. On average, IPC has been able to save customers 12 percent to 15 percent.

“If you’re using legacy ISDN PRI services or T1, NXT1 or DS3 circuits, we may be able to save you even more. Through our relationship with AT&T, we help customers take advantage of more cost-effective solutions such as carrier Ethernet, MPLS, SIP trunking and more.”

Legacy of Complexity

There are a number of reasons for the growing complexity in the telecom marketplace. Massive consolidation through mergers and acquisitions have left just a handful of major players. At the same time, new technologies and services have dramatically increased the number of options, leaving organizations to puzzle over the best mix of price, performance and availability.

Organizations have contributed to their problems and cost overruns with ad-hoc procurement practices. They often provision carrier services to meet immediate department-level needs with little consideration of future growth or changing demands. And because of the headaches associated with provisioning, those services tend to remain in place long after their useful life has ended.

Detailed audits often reveal a variety of issues. It is not uncommon in larger organizations to receive several dozen monthly invoices for voice and internet services. Audits often also reveal unauthorized charges, expensive long-distance calling rates and line features that are not being used.

According to an Aberdeen Group survey, telecom costs eat up 3.6 percent of all corporate revenue, with the average Fortune 500 Company spending $116 million a year on telecom services. The firm also reported that up to 18 percent of telecom billings are in error, with the majority of them in the carrier’s favor.

“Companies that need to bring telecom under control should strongly consider having an outside consultant such as IPC evaluate their systems,” said Andrews. “We are very familiar with contract negotiations and carrier selection, we understand the terms of the agreements, and we know what to expect and what pitfalls to look for.”

AT&T’s plans to transition to an all-IP network by 2020 offers an additional incentive for businesses to review their telecom services. AT&T has made it easier to move customers from legacy circuits to dedicated, IP-based services. IPC has more flexibility than ever to design and provision state-of-the-art solutions at highly competitive rates.

“We will also lend our expertise and experience to make the transition as smooth as possible,” said Andrews. “By working with IPC, you gain a team of experts who will help ensure that you get the best deal and guide you through the provisioning and installation process.”