Is your business costing you?find extra profit                  A guide to reducing operating costs                         ...
Introduction   Communications technologies continue to develop at a rapid   pace, enabling the availability of an ever-inc...
Fixed Line CostsDespite the exponential growth in email and mobileusage, the fixed line (landline) is still a fundamentalb...
Mobile Costs   The mobile phone is a vital business tool for most   companies. But contracts, terms and tariffs can be com...
DataYour internet connection is often critical to your business.But it is a limited resource with increasing demands thatn...
Technology   The continued rise in the use of internet-related technologies   and the progressive deployment of next gener...
Purchase versus leasingLeasing equipment can allow your organisation toimplement new technology without the need forcapita...
Management                                                                         and Control                            ...
PoliciesPolicies and internal procedures are key to managingcosts. It is imperative that employees know andunderstand what...
10 Expense Reduction Analysts
Expense Reduction                                                                AnalystsExpense Reduction Analysts is a g...
find extra profitArgentina Australia Austria Belgium Brazil Canada Chile China Colombia CyprusDenmark Ecuador Finland France...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Cost Reduction Guide Issue 7 Communications

438 views

Published on

0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total views
438
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
7
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
15
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Cost Reduction Guide Issue 7 Communications

  1. 1. Is your business costing you?find extra profit A guide to reducing operating costs Issue 7: Communications
  2. 2. Introduction Communications technologies continue to develop at a rapid pace, enabling the availability of an ever-increasing amount of functionality in communication devices and networks. Once more of a service or personnel- It includes tips and advice on the following areas: controlled expenditure, communications are now an integral and strategic business • Fixed Lines – how to best manage your line function which improve business rental and call costs productivity – the loss or disruption of • Mobiles – now a significant expense for most which can often have an immediate and businesses. Do you know your true costs? severe impact on many businesses. • Data – how to best manage your requirements and minimise expense Despite its importance, it is very easy to • Technology – Should you purchase or lose sight of the true cost of your lease/rent equipment? Could IP Telephony communications amid the bewildering array and Unified Communications reduce cost of contracts, pricing, changing technology and improve efficiency? and unforeseen costs. • Management and Control – contracts and policies are often an overlooked area which This guide – the seventh in our series can contribute to minimising expense looking at different areas of cost reduction – aims to provide a range of practical advice and examples from our expert consultants to help ensure your business is managing its communications costs effectively and efficiently.02 Introduction
  3. 3. Fixed Line CostsDespite the exponential growth in email and mobileusage, the fixed line (landline) is still a fundamentalbusiness communication tool. A reasonable monthlyexpenditure on fixed line communications is thereforeinevitable for all businesses.TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS:1. Cancel unused lines and ensure that your inbound and outbound line capacities match your business needs.2. Understand your call profile and the real call tariffs and how they apply against the range of different call types.3. Check your bills carefully for one-off costs, services that are no longer required or billing errors.4. Avoid calls to Directory Enquiries. These calls will cost at least 50p a minute and the same information is available at no cost from the web. If you do call Directory Enquiries, never accept the operator’s offer to connect you –you will be charged at least 10 times more per minute than your normal call rate. Fixed Line Costs 03
  4. 4. Mobile Costs The mobile phone is a vital business tool for most companies. But contracts, terms and tariffs can be complex, and it is common to find monthly mobile costs exceeding monthly fixed line costs. TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS: 1. International roaming (voice, data and texts) 2. Understand termination or other admin costs will normally be outside the bundle and charges which may be applied and how the will frequently be charged at much higher contract may affect the way you manage rates. When abroad: your mobile portfolio. • Turn off data roaming and connect to a local WiFi point which is free in many cafes 3. Account for all mobile devices (including and hotels. those used by past employees) and put in • Use text messages instead of calling. place a process to ensure all leavers return When roaming you are charged to receive their handsets. calls as well as to make them but texts are always free to receive and rarely cost 4.Decide whether employees are entitled more than 25p to send (even in the most to take the mobile phone number when remote locations). they leave. • Consider buying a special additional bolt-on bundle appropriate to your needs. 5. Consider the costs (including time) of supporting smartphones.04 Mobile Costs
  5. 5. DataYour internet connection is often critical to your business.But it is a limited resource with increasing demands thatneeds managing efficiently.Technologies which deliver broadband 2. Understand what you are using yourservices are continually evolving and connection for:new services are being made available. • How should bandwidth be used inIf your network and internet connections your business?are critical to your business, remember • Is bandwidth being wasted?that the cheapest may not always provide • Is non-work related internet usageyou with the level of service you require. controlled? • Is important traffic prioritised?TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS:1. Understand what you are paying for: 3. Monitor usage and take action before • Is a router and installation included? problems occur: • What support is available at the time of • Analyse and manage usage. Some installation and in the future and what firewalls and routers allow you to give will it cost? priority or prevent certain types of traffic. • What are the predicted or actual • With employee web misuse, streaming upload/download speeds? media and spam having the potential to occupy as much as 25% of internet bandwidth, ensure you understand the extent to which bandwidth is being hijacked. Data 05
  6. 6. Technology The continued rise in the use of internet-related technologies and the progressive deployment of next generation networks and devices has created opportunities to reduce costs and introduce business process improvements. IP Telephony and Unified Communications 4.Assess the state of your network. Ensure IP telephony and Unified Communications you have sufficient capacity and that its (convergence of voice, data and video on a performance is acceptable. single network) can be deployed to provide cost reduction and/or business benefits. 5. Document your requirements to minimise issues and ensure the end result meets your TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS: business needs. 1. Identify if your current equipment is compatible or if further investment is needed. 6. Ensure the additional security and business continuity risks are addressed. 2. Consolidate equipment and connections, link locations, share bandwidth across all services 7. Ensure the benefits are identified and and ensure the network is properly managed. measurable. 3. Understand how the system will be used, Collaboration using today’s technology how many sites will be supported and what can result in a number of additional functions will be used. benefits, including: • Reduced travel costs • Reduced environmental impact • Improved -work/life balance and productivity for employees06 Technology
  7. 7. Purchase versus leasingLeasing equipment can allow your organisation toimplement new technology without the need forcapital expenditure.Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is an TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS:important factor in making the purchase 1. Capture all (capital) costs for routers,versus leasing decision, taking into account switches, phones and software, networkrisks and benefits associated with these upgrades and system management tools.solutions. To ensure TCO is used effectively,it is essential that you compare the 2. Ensure operational start-up costs – suchadvantages of both purchasing and leasing. as training costs and implementation costs – are identified up front. 3. Identify system management, support, software upgrade costs and any costs associated with moves, additions and changes. 4.Consider inter-site connectivity and factor in ongoing savings from free or reduced call charges. Purchase versus leasing 07
  8. 8. Management and Control Contracts Communications contracts and terms can vary widely – both within and across differing communication products – in terms of their expectations, execution, documentation and communication. Contracts, terms and pricing are also 3. Understand your commitments and becoming increasingly complex. consider whether they are appropriate Understanding them is therefore a key to your commercial and strategic needs. component of effective communications Ensure you understand minimum periods management, ensuring they are delivering and/or minimum spend commitments, maximum business benefit. charges on termination, rolling contracts, notice periods and early ‘termination’ It is also essential that you are aware of what charges. your contract commits you to and, given the continual change in communications 4.If equipment is obtained through a finance technology, whether it provides the required agreement, or is provided ‘free’ or at less flexibility for your business. than retail price, understand whether you do – or will – own it (if not, seek clarification TIPS TO CONTROL COSTS: about whether and when the equipment 1. Locate and understand your contracts/terms will have to be returned). and ensure you have a hard (written) copy. 5. Ensure your service levels are appropriate 2. Be aware that terms may be communicated for the product and your business by in different ways, including in writing, considering whether you have chosen the billing messages/insertions and/or updates right service level option for each product, to websites. during what times are you able to report faults, how long it will take to fix, whether there is a warranty and how soon a replacement will be made available.08 Management and Control Contracts
  9. 9. PoliciesPolicies and internal procedures are key to managingcosts. It is imperative that employees know andunderstand what is required of them in order to avoidany unforeseen problems or costs.Policies may be contained in formal manuals, 3. Ensure your choice of mobile phones is basedstaff handbooks, contracts of employment on the needs of your organisation. Consideror via internal communications. whether a phone is being provided for business use only or includes personal useTIPS TO CONTROL COSTS: and whether employees need a specific1. Ensure employees know whether they are phone for business use. Assess whether your entitled to commit to new – or renew choice is influenced by compatibility with existing – contracts (particularly those made company IT policy/requirements. over the phone). 4.Implement a policy which forbids2. Implement a clear policy regarding the employees lending company devices to personal use of company (and employees’ friends and relatives. own) mobiles, fixed lines, company broadband, web browsing and social 5. Assess whether mobile devices need networking. Ensure employees understand additional security features such as user the cost implications, both financial and authentication, firewalls, virus detection, lost work time. spam controls, memory and contents erasure, encryption, intrusion detection, secure access to company network and backup. 6. Prevent employees’ own mobiles being connected to company computers and networks. Policies 09
  10. 10. 10 Expense Reduction Analysts
  11. 11. Expense Reduction AnalystsExpense Reduction Analysts is a global leader in cost,purchase and supplier management consultancy andfocuses on reducing non-core operating costs for private,not-for-profit and public sector organisations.Handling an annual supplier spend of Other topics covered in our series ofhundreds of millions of pounds on behalf of cost reduction guides include:clients in all sectors, the consultants at Issue 1: Property and PremisesExpense Reduction Analysts use their Issue 2: Banking and Financesignificant purchasing influence to achieve Issue 3: Back Office Suppliesoptimum value from suppliers, often Issue 4: Professional Servicessuccessfully retaining incumbents and using Issue 5: Logisticsexpert analysis and market intelligence to Issue 6: ITcombat ‘contract fatigue’. For more information contactExpense Reduction Analysts has 170consultants across the UK. It also has a global Expense Reduction Analystsinfluence in more than 35 countries on: 02380 829 737specialising in more than 100 non-corebusiness expenditure categories. or visit our website at: www.expense-reduction.co.uk Expense Reduction Analysts 11
  12. 12. find extra profitArgentina Australia Austria Belgium Brazil Canada Chile China Colombia CyprusDenmark Ecuador Finland France Germany Greece Hungary Ireland Italy Jordan KoreaLuxembourg Mexico Morocco Netherlands New Zealand Panama Philippines PolandPortugal Spain Sweden Switzerland Taiwan United Kingdom United States Uruguay Expense Reduction Analysts www.expense-reduction.co.uk

×