Visage, Concur Partnership: Giving a Whole New Look into BYOD
One of the most difficult elements for management of a bring-your-own-device, or BYOD, wireless program is reimbursements. For one thing, there’s no one right way to do it — some companies will issue a wireless-phone allowance or stipend to employees. Some pay for data, but not voice. Others vice-versa. Some reimburse employees fully; others partially.
But the bigger problem is that managers — whether in finance, IT, or even in a dedicated mobility department — really don’t have any idea what they’re paying for in most BYOD setups. When an employee requests $125 on mobile in an expense report, what’s really behind that number? Or, if you’re simply issuing a monthly $100 stipend, are you overpaying some employees who rarely use their phones? Management finds out pretty quickly that it’s just throwing money around blindly, with no real sense for how employees are using (or mis-using) their phones, tablets, or wireless data cards.
By combining the detailed expense-reporting that Concur, the country’s second-largest software-as-a-service company, is known for, with the 360-degree visibility into mobile expenditure of Visage Mobile’s Mobility Central software, organizations can for the first time ever truly get a grip on BYOD wireless program management.
“This provides much broader context for the all data an enterprise might have,” Bzur Haun, Visage’s CEO, said Thursday at a lunch announcing the partnership with Concur. “We can provide that visibility now.”
The partnership allows customers of either company to subscribe to the other product as an add-on. Both products are SaaS, and representatives from both companies said that similarities in their approach made building in compatibility with the other fairly seamless. The entire process took about three months.
Cathy Rheiner, a senior director for solutions consulting with Concur, pointed out that many companies now count both individual-liable and corporate-liable phones and tablets among their inventory. In the past, however, organizations had a hard time figuring out exactly what they were paying for under BYOD programs — which, in turn, left little room for flexibility. By combining Visage with Concur, managers can delve into either BYOD or corporate-liable wireless spend, or view them side-by-side. Further, by using the Visage dashboard, managers can warn and inform individual employees, or indeed anyone within the organization’s heirarchy, about impending overages — potentially saving some of those jaw-dropping, four-figure monthly bills that occasionally get turned in.
“This gives us a better view of the overall mobile spend,” Rheiner said. “And that allows [companies] to better manage spend.”
Both companies emphasized that visibility — both the individual-level, granular view, as well as the broader, company-wide view — is crucial to pro-actively managing expenses. As opposed to reactively trying to handle fast-escalating costs, companies can glean valuable information about where they’re inefficiencies lie, and stave off future problems before they develop.
Or, as Steve Prince, Visage’s vice president of sales and operations, said, “That’s awareness driving behavior.”
Image via itcrossroads.