Getting the most out of your budget is a challenge that every leadership team faces. One often overlooked expense is the company’s telecom system. While it may appear that a telecom system comes with a set cost, that’s untrue. In fact, your telecom expenses are often a reliable place to find savings, due to the fact that there are many moving parts in your telecom system, sometimes provided by a handful of different carriers.
So what does your telecom bill refer to? It’s more than just your phones. Telecom includes your local internet access, company cell phones, wide-area networks, fax lines, credit card lines, and cloud phone services. With careful review of these and all other communications related bills, many companies find that they can make a significant impact on their carrier cost. In fact, companies who partner with Vertical Communications’ to cut carrier costs have found an average 20-30% contract reduction.
To get started eliminating carrier costs, you will need to come up with a strategy of how to review and eliminate costs. This can be confusing if you haven’t worked through the process before, which is why Vertical Communications has created a 5-step methodology for cutting carrier costs. You can either partner with Vertical with this methodology, or go it alone. No matter what you decide, the below steps will help you begin to lower your costs.
When reviewing telecom services, you need to take a close look at all of your telecom bills, not just your phone system. Take the time to collect your internet, company cell phone, wide-area network, fax line, credit card line, and cloud phone service bills. But don’t stop there. Many companies have additional bills that aren’t included in a telecom package or that not everyone is aware of. This could be a landline that a manager has agreed to pay for a remote worker, a separate connection that was purchased by a different department, or a hot spot through a one-off provider. Take the time to work with the heads of each department to discover every service that your company has. The chances are that some of these one off items can be cancelled or combined with other services.
When Vertical partners with a company to lower their carrier cost savings, they’re involved in every step. During the cataloging period, Vertical works with the heads of each department to discover every existing bill, seeking out bills that commonly escape notice. To ensure no cost is left uncovered, a Vertical technician also investigates every connection in your building. This allows us to know which connections are being used, and which are just costing you extra money. Vertical has decades of telecom experience, giving them the knowledge you need to uncover every cost.
It’s not uncommon for services that aren’t being used to continue being paid for. Once you’ve cataloged all of your services, what services are and aren't being used will be apparent. Commonly unused items are old fax lines (which can run $70/$80 a month), ex-employee cell phone bills, or excess bandwidth that is being maintained after an office has downsized. It’s not always neglect that causes these unused services to stick around. Often times, managers are worried about the impact of cutting services- they worry that the services might be needed in the future or that removing the services will affect other systems. In reality, these services are rarely reintroduced and continue to drain the company budget.
When Vertical assists with a Cost Carrier review, we can help determine what is truly valuable to hang on to, and what should be eliminated. More often than not, the cost of holding on to an unused service greatly exceeds what the cost would be to add it back on later.
When it comes to telecom services, the price is always better when you purchase in volume. If your services are currently set up through separate carries, then you aren’t getting the best deal possible and are most likely losing money. This means that once you have cataloged your services and cut the unused services, you need to select one vendor that you can group all your services under. In these situations, Vertical will work to review all current services, guide you through reviewing current contract end dates, and will negotiate when to end all of the service dates at once to save you the most money. Vertical will also help with designing a comprehensive plan to bring all of your services under one vendor, taking the time to carefully find the best pricing possible.
Shopping around for the best price is a pivotal part of lowering your carrier costs. It might seem simpler to just select one of the carriers that you’re already working with, but taking the easy road could increase your costs. Instead, price shop with several carriers, and don’t hesitate to tell your current carriers that you’re looking and you need a new quote from them as well. Then, take the time to compare and contrast. What features and benefits will you get from each carrier, and at what price?
In this situation, working with Vertical Communications is particularly valuable. Vertical has relationships with all of the major carriers in the telecom industry. When you partner with Vertical, they will get a quote for every carrier, identify the best options for you to consider, and negotiate for the best possible pricing. Vertical’s telecom expertise allows us to understand what a truly good price is, and what you should be receiving in exchange for that price.
Just like in any other negotiation, you shouldn’t accept the first offer your selected carrier gives you. Instead, discuss your options with the carrier. Share your desired cost, and include what other offers carriers have given to you. Make sure to ask about discounts that they can deliver. Not only should you negotiate when you initially start with your new carrier, but remember to go back and renegotiate at the end of every contract period, whether it is annually or every 36 months. When your contract ends and you’re up for renewal, go back, get new quotes, and reassess your services. Your carrier should have new discounts available and should be willing to fight for your business.
When Vertical partners with a customer to help them find carrier cost savings, they go to bat on your behalf. Vertical will work with your selected carrier to lower your costs as much as possible. Vertical will push for the best deals and discounts. Getting service concession (overage protection, install fee waiving, etc.) and taking advantage of every promotion is part of Vertical’s service.
With these directions you can complete Vertical’s 5 Step Methodology for Cutting Carrier Costs on your own! Or, if you need help or this task feels daunting to you, Vertical can help. Get in touch with us to get started.