If your business depends on its phone and internet services, it’s not a good idea to cross your fingers and hope for the best. Analog phone lines should be put into place to back up voice circuits. Secondary internet connections should exist should a primary connection fail.
If you’re utilizing hosted Voice over IP (VoIP) you should have a couple extra phone sets stored away just in case one breaks. Additional routing equipment should be available in the event an existing router goes kaput.
When every business had an IT Manager on staff, it was okay for that person to interact directly with carrier reps. But most companies have outsourced that responsibility and let their employees deal directly with phone and cable company employees.
Some of those employees don’t know any better and base carrier decisions on items like a sales rep’s personality. Be smart, if you outsourced your IT support, outsource your technology procurement as well.
I don’t mean, “don’t shop around”, I mean don’t shop at all. You know the saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Well to some admins and office managers that means stonewall every telecom consultant or salesperson that approaches them.
The price of business phone and internet has dropped considerably over the past three to six years, if your business hasn’t reviewed its costs or services during that time, you’re probably paying too much for outdated services.
This is when I mean, don’t shop around. These companies limit their choices to incumbent phone and cable companies, like AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and CenturyLink, and figure every other company is utilizing those companies’ networks and would only add to their costs. But the only way there could be economies in the telecom industry is by providing access to area businesses through the incumbents’ networks.
Competitive providers are smaller, leaner organizations that purchase wholesale services and resell them to end-users. They’re high on ingenuity and service and don’t have residential traffic tying up their networks. When you limit your choices, you reduce your leverage and bargaining power and end up paying higher prices.
Good companies consider every possible outcome and have contingencies in place. Other companies have to scramble when something goes down or stops working.
Extra phone lines they don’t use; long distance bundles they don’t need; wireless packages that are overkill; fax lines – one item alone might seem like a small amount but if it’s more than one unnecessary service located in multiple offices, the cost can add up quickly.
Carriers limit the time period their customers can be credited for over billing. The limits, listed in the carriers’ agreements, are typically six months or less. So, if a business spots a billing error that has occurred for a period of twelve months, it’s very likely it won’t receive twelve months of credit.
Phone systems have become very dependable. Same with internet access and computer networks. Many businesses are accessing software located in the cloud. Subsequently, some businesses have lost contact with their phone and IT vendors. Big mistake. When it rains, it tends to pour.
A small problem can become a big problem when you don’t know whom to call or an employee steps in and attempts to repair something when he or she doesn’t possess the necessary qualifications.
If you’re a business with multiple locations and each location is treated like a one off, you’re not taking advantage of economies of scale or fully maximizing your bargaining and buying power. If you network your business locations, you facilitate growth and the management of your technology.
What I mean here is when companies experience nagging issues with their phone or internet services but think it’s too much of a hassle to fix the problem or that they would experience the same sort of issues with a different service provider.
I know a number of business people that put up with periodic poor call quality or outages and never do anything about it. If a technology issue is affecting your employees’ productivity, it’s a good idea to address the issue and get it fixed.
If your business is making any of the above mistakes maybe it’s time to seek the help of a telecom consulting firm like CarrierBid.
CarrierBid can help your business save money, operate more efficiently and establish redundancy so your business can remain operational no matter what is going on with your technology. If you would like to receive more information, contact CarrierBid today or complete the web form on the right side of this page.
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