Telecom billing is costly, complex, and confusing. It can at times, feel like it is impossible to get a complete grasp on your telecom invoice reviews. However, if you take the proper steps to get a handle on where your organization’s money is going and why it is going there – you will be able to save yourself and your business a great deal of time and expense.
Why Are Telecom Invoices so Difficult to Process?
Processing a telecom invoice is a labor-intensive task for enterprises. There are lower standards in the billing formats of telecom service providers, so it is challenging for organizations to process bills in electronic format without custom software. Due to the complexity in carrier billing platforms, they are not able to process EDI and other forms of electronic billing media. There are also continual changes in carrier billing platforms that make this task much harder to achieve as time goes on.
By automating and converting bills to electronic media, it helps to reduce the costs of manually processing paper bills. This also makes it easier to avoid data entry errors and time to process bills. The savings depend on how many people are processing bills and the roles that are performed after TEM automates this function.
There are many components in telecom expenses, so it’s important to audit them carefully. It is critical to review your invoices often to ensure that you have a good understanding of them. In doing so, you can get rid of services you’re no longer using and renegotiate contracts that aren’t working for your business. There are a couple of reasons as to why the costs are so high and how you can avoid it.
Avoiding Costly Mistakes
- Offices move locations, and sometimes services for locations no longer in use can stay on your company’s expense list by mistake.
- Service providers can change contracts or service levels without notifying you so that you’re paying for something either you don’t need or didn’t even want in the first place.
- Companies often aren’t leveraging the full weight of their purchasing power when negotiating or renegotiating these contracts. There are often loopholes, packages, or deals that can save your company money that service providers would rather keep under wraps.
- Service providers usually offer credits in exchange for outages or maintenance disruptions called Service Level Agreements or SLAs. Tracking and following up on these credits will bring in the revenue you previously didn’t have.
Once you have examined your telecom expenses in full, you can unite your services under one account if applicable, end contracts that you don’t want or need anymore, switch to services that better fit your needs, renegotiate contracts that aren’t as economical as they could be, and find the money you didn’t know you had, such as unclaimed SLA credits.
Not only will a telecom invoice audit streamline your accounting and save you money, but it will also allow you to see what you’re truly spending on telecom services. Once you have this number in hand, you can create comparisons between different service providers that include information like proposed savings, opportunity costs, migration costs, and install base.
Comparing these providers with a realistic conception of your telecom budget in mind will allow you to switch to a better service provider if you so choose.
After your audit, consolidate, and streamline your telecom expenses, you will want to convert your paper bills to paperless media and automate your billing procedures. This will cut down on paper, human error in manual data entry, and time spent by staff processing and sending payments to service providers. This step will ensure your company saves even more time and expense on unnecessary analog processes when it comes to telecom bills.
However, due to differences in carrier billing platforms and changing protocols within service providers, it can be difficult to electronically process all of your bills in one place. This is where Telecom Expense Management, or TEMs, comes into play. TEM providers come in all shapes and sizes; some are software-as-a-service, others are firms to which you can outsource every aspect of your telecom billing process. TEM helps to provide new revenue as well as income that is consistent. Curious if a TEM is right for your company? Schedule a free consultation below to learn more.