Identifying the Culprits in Mobile Billing Nightmares
Mobile expense management can be pretty frightening, especially if that monthly bill is slowly climbing thanks to ever more capable devices and data-dependent employees. Recognizing key pain points in corporate wireless spending is an essential part of controlling costs, so it might just be time to stage an intervention of sorts to let employees know how they can use data and devices in a budget-friendly way.
Make Sure You, and Everyone Else, Knows Who’s In Charge
Cohesion and communication is key to managing your company’s wireless spend. In larger companies, the task can feel far too big to be addressed by just one executive, or even one team. But as the saying goes, if 10 people are in charge of a project, nobody is in charge of the project.
The technical lean of mobile plans has led to some unplanned restructuring, as well. CFOs used to be in charge of keeping track of employees’ wireless usage habits. Now, some have been off-loading the entire process to tech teams since more MDM tools incorporate telecom expense management features.
Whatever the chosen strategy, all parties must be made explicitly aware of their responsibilities. What companies cannot afford is a rift between finance executives and IT decision-makers – that kind of disorganization allows for wireless reporting discrepancies and a lack of clear guidance for employees.
Your Employees Are Racking Up Bills
Even among companies that have their management strategy locked down, international roaming charges can create some jawdropping bills.
“Roaming is becoming exponentially dangerous due to two variables: the proliferation of networks and the speed of these networks,” Tangoe‘s Chris Mezzatesta explained in a recent advisory bulletin for the Telecom Expense Management Industry Association. “As 4G networks are rolled out across the globe, network download speeds are increasing to 42 megabits per second. When international roaming, the cost for data can be $50 and up per megabyte. A person can easily spend thousands of dollars downloading a single movie while on 4G international roaming network.”
Clearly, while your coworkers shouldn’t be downloading a movie for their iPad before a transatlantic flight, that doesn’t mean they aren’t (“I’m sorry, I just really needed to watch The Notebook” is not a viable excuse). It falls to mobility managers to educate the rest of the workforce on what’s okay, and what’s really not, when using company mobile devices.
Well-informed staff members are often the IT department most reliable – not to mention affordable – allies. However, robust technological solutions are still required to ensure adequate visibility and reliable policy enforcement.
Photo used under Creative Commons by Flickr user gogoloopie.