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Multinational businesses are increasingly reliant on their telecoms and network services; how can businesses ensure they remain in control even as their networks sprawl?

Whether empowering a mobile workforce, delivering business critical applications or simply communicating with clients and colleagues – telecoms services are and will always be a business critical resource.

For some multinational corporations (MNCs), however, managing this telecoms estate can prove extremely costly, time-consuming and complex.

Gartner recently predicted that telecoms spend typically accounts for 40% of companies’ total IT spending1. Coupled with more person-to-person communication using richer and more data-intensive media – telecommunication costs will continue to rise and absorb increasing amounts of organisations’ budgets.

As enterprise communications become more sophisticated, diverse and increasingly challenging to control, business need for flexible and responsive IT and communications facilities is increasing.

So what can companies do to meet their total telecommunications needs and avoid unnecessary costs?

Visibility and control are essential

It is essential that companies take steps to retain control by ensuring that the leaders in the business have good visibility of their telecommunications services. This will enable better managing and optimising of telecommunications spend. The first step is to establish a detailed inventory of baseline services for use as the benchmark when it comes to managing the services and costs. An easy way to do this is to consolidate the number of suppliers and services used across geographies. Too much diversity can make it extremely complex to manage at the contract level.

It is also imperative to have an ultimate owner of the enterprise telecoms estate with the authority to make policy decisions at the enterprise level and accountability for its management and performance. Tariffs, billing systems and infrastructure vary widely and the complexity of navigating this web of entanglements can be overwhelming. As the breadth of these telecoms estates expands, more companies are turning to partners for advice whose core competency is in telecoms management and the ability to operate anywhere it does business.

Doing so typically helps to streamline the procurement process as well as enable businesses to bring their combined purchasing power to bear on suppliers and service providers. Regardless of whether telecoms management is owned internally or externally, what MNCs are after is the benefit derived from the economies of scale a holistic view provides, and the ability to negotiate new and better contracts across the business globally instead of regionally.

The enhanced visibility also delivers new intelligence to senior managers: giving them an accurate financial picture and better equipping them to make informed decisions about the overall telecoms strategy, as well as to more confidently deliver stable and longer-term budget forecasts. This new intelligence could include identifying high data users and ensuring they are on the right plan or visibility that allows devices distributed around the business in the most optimal way.

In summary, for companies to truly implement a holistic approach to telecoms management they need to understand that it is not just a one-off exercise. It must be a collaborative and sustained effort focused on properly managing and optimising their total telecommunications estate. Getting telecoms management right not only improves business efficiency, customer responsiveness and productivity; it also helps businesses transform their telecommunications into a strategic asset that flows to the bottom line.

See how we can help you transform your telecoms management: