Is a Telecom Audit Still Relevant?

I’m often asked, in this day and age with everybody migrating services to the cloud, is a telecom audit still relevant? Does analyzing a telecom infrastructure and looking for waste in the telecom environment still provide value?

It’s a great question.  Considering that even our own company is putting a greater emphasis on cloud services and technologies, one might think that a telecom audit will have negligible value. However, nothing could be further from the truth! What we are finding is there are tremendous opportunities to help our clients take advantage of new technology. Yet, there are still legacy services that for one reason or another can’t go away. In addition to that, as companies are no longer relying as aggressively on production environments in house, the need for bandwidth to support external processes is even greater. Companies of all sizes absolutely need to address this.

What I thought I’d do is list a few potential red flags to be aware of and determine if it warrants a deeper dive into your environment:

  1. Large summary bills from carriers like AT&T and Verizon – These are often very nondescript with limited details. We frequently see partial circuits and incomplete disconnects reflected on these. In addition, even though companies spend a lot of time negotiating contracts, there are regularly aspects of a contract that are not fully implemented. Just because a few sub accounts on a summary invoice are billing correctly there is no guarantee they all are. All invoicing needs to be cross referenced to the contract.
  1. Aged voice circuits or lack of utilization analysis – Companies are migrating to sip trunks or aggregating voice PRI’s without fully analyzing utilization needs. Voice requirements are diminishing in a majority of the organizations we work with. Having carriers provide utilization reports and doing greater research, often provides huge opportunities for cost reductions.
  1. Lack of detailed and validated service inventory – Yes, companies have migrated away from the majority of their old legacy services, but due to the confusing nature of phone bills, they are still being paid. Anyone that has worked in this industry for an extended period of time realizes firsthand that placing a disconnect order with the carrier in no way means that order is going to complete, let alone services will be removed in their entirety. Internal systems and processes are necessary to follow up and ensure that orders go through. Also, creating a detailed, validated inventory of services provide a significant opportunity to free up funds and create cash flow from this large area of expense.

All in all, it still makes a lot of sense for organizations to dig deeper into their telecom environment. It doesn’t matter whether you are looking to maintain some services exactly the way they are today, or you want to make changes. Having a clean validated understanding of services being billed and paid, help to establish a better baseline from which to build your telecom and cloud future!

Always feel free to reach out if I can be a resource!

Dean Rowen