Today’s increasingly competitive work environment demands an advanced mix of business communication and collaboration solutions. Decision-makers are saving time and money by investing in cloud-hosted telecom services to provide their teams with secure, efficient connectivity. For companies trying to navigate a diverse range of digital services spanning multiple locations, technology expense management is priority one.
But for businesses without a plan to manage those cost-saving solutions, technology spend can still get out of hand. In mid- to enterprise-level organizations, departments tasked with managing tech inventories, negotiating contracts, verifying invoices, and identifying areas of overspending are understandably overwhelmed. It’s a pain point that can cost companies hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.
Instead of trying to navigate the complexities of technology spend with increasingly outdated methods of cost control, consider how the latest advances in technology expense management could help your organization clarify and control your costs.
Why Are Business Decision-Makers Investing in Technology Expense Management Services?
At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, most mid-to-enterprise level business decision-makers allocating funds for the technologies needed to support remote work believed they were investing in communication and collaboration solutions intended for short-term use—a temporary expense. Back then, increasing technology spending to accommodate “workaround” solutions was the best option available. It was generally assumed that business owners and their management teams planned to abandon their “workaround” solutions once the threat of the virus diminished.
Today, most have no intention of returning to the technology solutions they relied on pre-pandemic. But they are looking for ways to eliminate unnecessary expenses and streamline their approach—and with good reason.
The more technology solutions and services an organization relies on, the harder it is for those in charge of tech inventories, monthly invoices, and contract renewals to ensure their company is getting the best value for its digital spend.
Most don’t have enough information to identify system inefficiencies or invoice inaccuracies, and they’re sorting through mountains of information that impacts multiple departments. Evaluating and analyzing numerous documents line-by-line across multiple locations is time-consuming and inefficient.
Investing in a robust technology expense management service is one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways for decision-makers and their teams to reclaim control of and reduce their technology spend. But not all technology expense management service providers offer the same level of service.
The best providers not only leverage the latest advances in AI-enhanced automation, they also become a valuable extension of their client’s IT department, helping analyze and control technology spend while ensuring their clients have a solid network infrastructure capable of handling current and future telecom needs.
The Advantages of Technology Expense Management Services and Support
When your financial and IT departments rely on legacy expense tracking and reporting systems, it’s nearly impossible to maintain a clear view of your organization’s tech inventory, your hardware, software, and services. While it’s relatively easy to update outdated processes with as-a-service software designed to track and monitor numerous expenses, business technology solutions and their billing terms are complex. Often, a comprehensive, corporate-wide expense audit of technology services reveals costly oversights and service discrepancies that significantly increase digital spend, month after month.
With the average company supporting at least 200 employees using as many as 123 software as a service (SaaS) applications divided between an average of 19 unique billing owners, having a clear overview of technology spend and the data needed to gauge the value of each investment is essential. Technology expense management services empower business owners and their management teams by providing a flexible, adaptable expense management system capable of evolving as their business acquires new services and application stacks.
Although many corporate decision-makers find the advanced reporting and analytic capabilities alone more than sufficient to justify investing in technology expense management services, there are other distinct advantages.
Automated Invoice Verification and Payment
Again, managing multiple IT invoices is no simple task. Finance teams responsible for validating complex service invoices often accidentally overlook erroneous charges. On most invoices, there’s a fair amount of industry-specific terminology to decode in addition to subtle (or not-so-subtle) differences between contracts, payment policies, and the terms of service-level agreements.
Technology expense management centralizes corporate inventory and billing details on one user-friendly platform. The system auto-updates with incoming invoices, and cross-checks billing data against the service inventory, spotting inconsistencies before payment. When discrepancies occur, account managers have immediate access to the resources needed to research and resolve any issues with just a few clicks.
Identifying Unutilized and Underutilized Services
As technology advances and business needs evolve, it’s not unusual for department managers and their teams to gradually reduce their dependency on legacy hardware and software as they transition to more cost-effective alternatives. Change can be stressful, and there are also learning curves to consider. Once that transition is complete, many organizations that invest in tech upgrades continue to pay fees for equipment that’s no longer in use and subscription fees for services utilized by only a small number of people (or abandoned long ago).
When tech inventories and as-a-service subscriptions are tracked and monitored by an automated technology expense management system, usage data is gathered from service providers on an ongoing basis. Underutilized (and unutilized) services are identified and flagged for review so decision-makers can reassess their needs, eliminate service redundancies, and curtail unnecessary expenses.
Proactive Email Notifications
The best technology expense management providers can also help mid- to enterprise-level organizations avoid potentially detrimental service interruptions and other complications. Investing in technology expense management for workflow automation and support ensures the appropriate representatives receive email notifications well in advance of contract milestones.
Although not all technology expense management providers offer this service, it’s a feature that not only eliminates the risk of service disruptions due to missed deadlines or miscommunication, but benefits organizations by sending proactive email notifications, saving time and money by avoiding unwanted auto-renews for services that are no longer required or paying additional fees to terminate off-market contracts.
For businesses paying numerous telecom providers across multiple countries to keep their organization operational, even seemingly minor billing inaccuracies and overcharges can add up fast. After investing in technology expense management, one leading global investment firm discovered several years of oversights that resulted in overpaying for their communication services by $300,000.
That firm’s technology expense management provider not only identified billing errors; their support team was able to leverage their strategic partnership with nationally-branded telecom carriers to negotiate credit for impacted billing cycles even further back than originally anticipated. Although not all technology expense management providers have the expertise to negotiate this type of reimbursement, it’s an example that illustrates how technology expense management teams can help organizations avoid costly litigation.
Investing with the right technology expense management provider gives you the peace of mind that you have an experienced expense management team continuously working behind the scenes on behalf of your business. They leverage their industry-wide connections to renegotiate service terms and secure telecom upgrades on your behalf without increasing the cost.
The very best technology expense management providers also leverage the power of AI-enhanced software to reduce tech spend and improve overall network performance by analyzing your current telecom contracts to ensure you’re not paying above market value. If the system identifies higher-than-normal charges for any given location, you’ll have a clear roadmap for contract renegotiation or supplier replacement.
Get Ready to Discover What Technology Expense Management Solutions Could Do for Your Business
Most mid- to enterprise-level corporations with branches spanning multiple locations task their financial departments with validating and paying a steady stream of complex invoices. But few associates know enough about the industry-specific terminology related to the various charges on each of those invoices to identify discrepancies. Even when errors are detected, many decision-makers choose to pay any questionable charges to avoid penalties, service disruptions, or straining an otherwise amicable relationship with their service providers.
Technology expense management helps businesses take control of their digital spend and reduce telecommunication costs by providing a clear overview of their tech inventory and the data-driven insights decision-makers need to gauge the value of their investment. The best expense management systems go beyond classic technology expense management with automated invoice verification, data parsing, expense allocation, and more.
At BCM One, we’re committed to working with multi-site organizations to help plan and implement cost-effective IT solutions. We’re also the only provider that takes technology expense management to the next level with automated Technology Expense Optimization. Our proprietary Sophia™ platform is the first of its kind and the ideal solution for mid- to enterprise-level businesses with a minimum of a $40,000 monthly digital spend.
Our clients save up to 20% on their annual technology spend within their first year. When you’re ready to take charge of your technology spend, manage contracts with less work, and identify and resolve billing issues faster, contact BCM One.