In or Out Source: Who Can Provision Your Telecom Environment Better?

Can an outsourcing company help project manage provisioning for your Telephony network better than your internal IT team?  
In or Out Source TEM and Provisioning Which Is Better? This post features important things to consider to make the best decision for your firm and 10 Steps to Procurement Success.
Outsourcers may have a lot of experience, but your team is likely full of smart folks too. Below are things to consider to make the best decision for your environment.

  1. Do you have the resources to get it done right and on time?

If your team is focused on the day-to-day, then provisioning can seem like an extra burden, especially if you’ve got an extra time sensitive project.  Often provisioning is not part of the day-to-day routine. When you don’t do provisioning every day, the nuances and access to the right contacts aren’t always at your fingertips. If you don’t have a large team with diverse experience, an occasional new location or provisioning new services can be overwhelming.

  1. What should you look for when seeking help?

Whether you seek to completely offload provisioning management, or need some additional support, it’s important to find the right outsourcer. When looking for an outsourced telecom consulting partner, look for ones whose teams have diverse areas of specialization that can support support all telephony needs from billing, procurement of wireline services, to wireless needs.  Each team member should have employees with experience who specialize in areas to help review and assist with the management of your network.  Additionally, outsourcing these functions will free your internal IT team to focus on the needs of your employees and customers. Offloading this to a third party also has the potential of saving your company money!

  1. Where do you start?

Good project management starts with knowing what you have, what you are billed, and determining if the services are still required to efficiently run your business.  Telcom billing specialists can reconcile invoices with  carrier contracts and file claims with carriers for billing errors to put money back in your budget!
Once you decide to outsource, the first step is to audit all your services and determine:

  • Each type of Service that are billed for each locations.
  • Where appropriate, order Customer Service Records (CSR’s) from each service provider.
    • Confirm Billing is accurate based on your service contract rates and other special pricing.
    • If the service is being used. (If it is not active before disconnecting it, verify that it is not a back-up in case of service outage.)
  • Provide results from the Audit for your review to confirm how to best move forward with managing your account.

Once the audit is complete, you can start the procurement of your network.  This is the critical part to help you save money and ensure you are getting the best carrier service to support your company network needs.  For tips on procurement, read the guide on: 10 Steps to Procurement. 
10 Procurement Steps

  1. Identify services which are no longer used and submit disconnect requests to save $$$.
  2. Review services still in use to see if upgrades and or optimization can save $$$.
  3. Conduct site surveys and gather End User Customer Requirements (EUCR) .
  4. Work with Carriers to identify the best new options to serve your needs going forward.
  5. Obtain Carrier quotes and negotiate better pricing and Service Level Agreements (SLA’s).
  6. Compile key installation milestones and FOC (Firm Order Commitment) dates for all pertinent carrier service order info.
  7. Coordinate installation milestones, service activations and disconnects.
  8. Participate in weekly calls with Carrier as needed.
  9. Work with local contacts to coordinate new service installations.
  10. Ensure any unused or discontinued services are removed from billing and equipment is returned so additional charges are not incurred.

Below is a Case study on Provisioning for a MPLS Migration
Written by:   Jackie Reis, Laura Kapral – 4TelecomHelp provisioning department and Kathleen Glass – marketing consultant Oinkodomeo

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