We recently hosted an informative webinar where we explored areas where wastage can occur in managing mobility and telecom expense, and how to remove this waste with a platform approach. View the on-demand webinar here.
Published in the Australian Financial Review, a survey of CFOs identified that the top priority for 2021 is cost management and cost reduction activities, and coming in second, system rationalisation and increased automation. It makes sense then that efficiency and visibility around major spend categories is crucial. SaaS platforms like Bluewater provide this in the mobility and telecom space, reducing wastage and freeing up spend for new innovative activity – another key challenge for all businesses.
In fact, almost 25% of registrants told us their biggest concern regarding telecom cost management was lack of visibility and control with another similar-sized portion attributing inefficient and manual workflows and processes as their biggest concern. Interestingly, the majority of registrants answered ‘all of the above’ so are additionally concerned about the difficulty in tracking and managing updates to devices and services and lack of accountability and governance in business units.
Australian businesses already spend over $10b annually in mobility, voice and data and a rapidly evolving and changing world will see the management of mobile assets, expenses and telecom become even more complex. Getting in control is key for cost management and governance. During the webinar, I shared an example of complexity: 150 customers managing 500k services across 100k cost centres. What could go wrong?!
In our experience, we have discovered there are three main areas of wastage:
- Poor workflow wastes time and leads to errors (this is the hidden operational cost of management)
- Time taken to review assets and services billing leading to complacency (this is hidden operational waste)
- Lack of accountability leading to unallocated and redundant spend (this is accepted waste)
While carrier platforms help you with jobs to be done and accessing bills, to get real control, you need a tool in your business to drive YOUR workflow, YOUR reviews and YOUR business unit accountability. Watch the webinar for more on this.
Below are some questions and answers from the webinar:
Q: What does the platform implementation process look like?
A: At Bluewater we aim for an 8-week platform implementation process. The key part of this is getting the right data from your organisation (employees, services, cost centres) and establishing the required workflows and reports. Within just a week your platform will already give you better visibility. With Bluewater, it is more than onboarding onto a platform. The process is actually a journey to full visibility and understanding your service and asset ecosystem – we see significant opportunity for cost savings here! Check out our guided implementation steps here.
Q: Can you integrate with other systems?
A: Yes, we have an open API framework. We know that any platform needs to work within your existing ecosystem, so we ensure you can integrate with Bluewater.
We also have a ServiceNow connector available for our Enterprise subscribers.
Q: How does the Bluewater platform work with my Telstra services partner?
A: Bluewater becomes your interface to sending requests to partners. We have over 20 of Telstra’s Mobility Partners in our partner program, who actively promote Bluewater as a key component of their service stack.
Q: Why isn’t billing my carrier’s problem and why pay for my own tool?
A: Getting a clean bill is your carrier’s aim. However, we all know that bills are retrospective and any action from them is reactive. Getting procurement, accountability and analysis right – in a form that works within your business – isn’t a carrier’s responsibility, but it is what proactively improves the bill for your business.
Q: What is the cost and return of the Bluewater platform?
A: Bluewater is charged on a monthly SaaS basis with a small setup fee. The ROI depends on the customer, complexity and state of processes and accounts. Our customers typically get a 2- 3x annual return on the platform investment. And in many cases, much more.
Q: When is a platform approach justified?
A: While it’s really business-specific, we advise that a platform is justified when you have complexity in process and/or significant spend (in mobile service numbers this is probably 300+). Complexity comes down to workflow and reporting requirements. As an example we have a franchise group customer with less than 100 mobile services, however, their workflow and reporting is driven by the individual franchisees, so complexity and return warrants a platform approach.
If you would like to see first-hand how Bluewater works, request a free demo with us today!