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Winning the battle against billing errors

Watch out for these five areas of potential over billing

(and cut your monthly technology spend by up to 20%).

Telecom billing errors are on the rise. The impact of these errors can be dramatic, Gartner reports that 85% of telecom invoices have mistakes and cost businesses upwards of 12-20% of over-spending every month.

Many companies suffer from a lack of detail around their inventory, assets, and services, aligned with the corresponding carrier contracts. As businesses increase the complexity of their communications footprint, adding incremental wired and mobile devices and services, the greater the risk of overspending. Billing errors are often difficult to spot, and without any way to keep track, they can easily creep in month over month.

Consider one organization that was managing 100K+ mobile devices and over 1,500 in network hardware, with more than 80 vendors, they tracked 1000+ billing errors every month. Sometimes they were easy to spot and fix, sometimes it took deeper investigation. All together, large and seemingly small errors added up to almost $200K each month, $2.4M annualized.

Where do these errors come from? A few of these reasons are listed below:

1. Overbilling for services

Enterprises are often able to negotiate preferential rates with their carriers. While these are clearly detailed in the signed contract agreements, the monthly billing does not always factor the negotiated rates, resulting in higher billing.

2. Double billing

Changes in product name, software errors or simply miscommunication between billing departments can result in situations wherein your business is billed multiple times for the same service.

3. Informal move, add, change, delete (MACD) processes

One-time errors related to set up and installation fees, facility issues, or duplicate services can be incurred if there is no central MACD tracking and approval.

4. Lapsed real estate

When a company sells, moves, or contracts their office location, cancelling telecom services is sometimes overlooked and they continue to pay for services. In some cases the service was disconnected but continues to be charged.

5. Contract discrepancies

Does the information on the invoice match with the contract? The more complex your environment, the more difficult it can be to confirm these details.

Invoice validation is a key step to payment processing. However, many businesses rely on Accounts Payable to process invoices quickly, by doing a quick validation of the current month before paying and filing the bill. TEM software provides centralization to the procure-to-pay lifecycle, including matching inventory with vendors, contracts, rate cards, etc, with the outcome of dramatically reducing billing errors.

 

Keep learning

Billing discrepancies is just one of the ways to curb your telecom spending and find real savings. Check out these additional articles and content to give you more ideas.

And, if you’re looking into TEM software, consider Upland Cimpl telecom expense management software to manage inventory, vendors, contracts, and more to accelerate telecom costs savings for your business.

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