Managing mobile costs abroad

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49% of companies look to use alternative services instead of mobile email and data when travelling abroad. At first glance they may offer good value, but in practice costs are often hidden from the business and there can be data security risks for your company. How can you keep your employees connected globally, minimise security risks, and avoid unexpected bills?

Both employees and companies want to be effortlessly connected when travelling abroad, but businesses often restrict roaming, because company policy requires them to control costs. In addition to this employees will sometimes limit their own usage, because they are concerned about a large bill at the end of the month. This double restriction means employees are looking to use workaround solutions which, at first glance offer good value, but in reality can come with hidden costs and data security risks.

Below we review some of the alternative solutions used by employees when working abroad and discuss how we can help you manage your roaming costs effectively.


Local SIMs and handsets can result in missed opportunities

Locally sourced SIMs and handsets seem like a good idea but there are additional considerations that are often overlooked. You could lose business if clients don’t have your employees’ temporary numbers, and the problem is compounded if executives travel to different countries regularly. Sourcing and setting up devices and SIMs locally is time consuming and the service may require local support. It is also difficult to manage costs if you can’t see them, especially if the cost of local SIMs is buried in expense reports.

There are also security risks involved. When you no longer need the SIM or handset how do you safely dispose of them?


Public WiFi – are you gambling with your valuable information?

Local public WiFi is a cost effective alternative and is often widely available, but is it secure? Unsecured WiFi connections can present a security hazard and expose sensitive information and data to interception. This can result in unwelcomed costs and reputational damage.


The hidden cost of hotel WiFi

Hotel WiFi is unlikely to be free and, if the cost is rolled on to the hotel bill, it can be buried in expenses, making tracking almost impossible. Just because a hotel is reputable doesn’t mean its WiFi is secure either. Hackers with fake networks can be unwelcome guests – it’s easy for unsuspecting users to expose their personal data.

There’s also the risk that WiFi may not be compatible with corporate VPNs – and the set-up procedure can be unclear. Typically, users will require a daily login, and passwords often expire without warning. This also assumes the login process is simple, and instructions are in a language the users understand. As with public WiFi, download speeds and service can be variable.


So what’s needed?

You need clear visibility of costs and the confidence your mobile plan allows you to use your device as you would at home. This means your business can control spend without imposing restrictions, leaving your employees free to concentrate on getting the job done.

We have created Vodafone Red for Global Enterprise, specifically designed for multinational organisations. To give you the confidence to fully embrace mobile ways of working and manage costs when working abroad with:


Unprecedented roaming value

You can use your home plan when travelling in 45 countries across the globe for a small daily access fee. We understand employee’s usage can change on a monthly basis and you need a plan that flexes in line with this. We automatically move your employees onto the best plan each month – it adjusts up or down based on usage providing you with the most cost effective solution.


Keep roaming costs under control

When traveling outside of these 45 countries we offer Download the brochure (1MB) to help you control costs. Provided as standard, this mobile app monitors data usage globally in real time, and warns when pre-defined thresholds are about to be reached, so usage can be adjusted and money saved.


Extra security solutions for added confidence

We also provide security solutions that give your company the confidence that valuable data and devices are protected from the impact of security threats or device and data theft. These include Vodafone Device Manager, which monitors and protects all mobile devices and the data on them, whether they’re owned by the employee or the enterprise. There’s also Vodafone Mobile Threat Manager – a cloud-based security solution for mobile devices which filters traffic, scans for malware and blocks infected content.