In 2023, developing and implementing an effective wireless telecom procurement strategy is more difficult than ever. Rapidly emerging technologies and rising costs in an increasingly competitive market complicate the question of how to procure telecom services.
At CenterPoint Group, we understand not only procurement challenges in telecom but also how to help businesses and organizations overcome them.
3 Top Telecom Industry Trends to Keep Watching
A wave of innovations has helped drive the telecommunications industry's resilience. It also presents procurement professionals with a host of new factors to consider.
The Rise of 5G Networks
The fifth generation of wireless technology—5G—debuted early in 2019 but truly went mainstream last year. 5G networks can be up to 1,000 times faster than 4G networks. They are designed for extremely low latency, meaning they can transfer data almost instantly. And they are more reliable, connecting more users at a time and offering better service in hard-to-reach areas.
Sourcing and managing the often costly components of 5G infrastructure raises new challenges for procurement professionals. But ignoring how 5G is already transforming business isn't an option.
The Growth of Mobile Telecom
Mobile wireless telecom devices have become nearly indispensable. As of April 2021, 97% of Americans owned a cell phone of some kind.
In business, mobile telecom helps employees work remotely and stay in contact on the move. It also allows smaller businesses to compete globally without investing in expensive infrastructure.
For their organizations to fully realize wireless telecom's benefits, procurement professionals must stay up-to-date with the latest technologies. They must develop telecom procurement strategies that are flexible and adaptable to changing market conditions.
The Increasing Complexity of Mobile Contracts
Telecom providers have developed a vast array of useful new products and features. They've also implemented a plethora of complicated pricing structures and service levels.
Procurement professionals need to pay close attention to these contractual complexities. They must ensure they fully understand contracts' terms and conditions and their organizations' specific needs to negotiate the best services and prices.
3 Common Obstacles to Successful Telecom Procurement
Successfully sourcing wireless telecom demands meticulous planning and execution.
Here are three common obstacles to a successful telecom procurement strategy:
Because telecommunication services are mission-critical in modern business, telecom expenses frequently claim a significant portion of the budget. The amount of services and equipment large or geographically dispersed organizations need can also have a significant budgetary impact. Additionally, service providers are constantly rolling out new technologies, making it costly for businesses to keep up.
Lack of Transparency
Lack of transparency about companies' telecom usage makes it hard for them to evaluate potential service providers or determine if they're getting the best deal from their current ones. This absence of accurate and complete information may also lead organizations to miss opportunities for telecom cost reduction.
Vendor lock-in is a situation when a business becomes dependent on a specific vendor for a product or service and can't switch without incurring major costs or operational disruptions. Lock-in poses significant risks because it allows a vendor to easily charge higher prices. It also reduces a business's ability to address its changing telecom needs in a timely way.
Solutions for Procurement Challenges in Telecom
The wireless telecom procurement process can be complex and time-consuming. But businesses can employ several solutions to make it more efficient.
Taking Better Advantage of Technology
Many businesses use technological solutions that automate invoice processing, track usage, and provide real-time insights into telecom spending. This data-driven approach can reduce errors, realize cost savings, increase productivity, and support better-informed decisions when selecting providers and negotiating contracts.
Also, cloud-based, software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions provide businesses with efficient and cost-effective ways to manage telecom procurement. Through the cloud, businesses can access data and applications from anywhere in the world and reduce IT costs. And such solutions allow them to scale telecom procurement up or down quickly as needed.
Collaborating More Closely With IT
By involving the IT department in procurement, an organization can ensure it acquires only the right technology, from the right vendors.
Strong internal collaboration with IT can also help implement solutions more effectively. The IT department has knowledge and expertise to manage network infrastructure, software installation and configuration, security protocols, and more. Closer collaboration with IT can also help identify potential opportunities to optimize or enhance solutions already in place.
Partnering With a Proven GPO
Working with a GPO (Group Purchasing Organization) can be a great way for businesses to streamline and save money on telecom procurement.
A GPO gives your company access to a wider range of supplier relationships and products than it would have on its own. And by leveraging its members' collective purchasing power, a GPO can negotiate better prices, too.
In addition, GPOs often offer additional value-added services. Telecom contract management, compliance monitoring, and spend analysis can all further optimize procurement and benefit your bottom line.
Trust CenterPoint for Favorable Telecom Procurement
CenterPoint Group is an industry-leading, certified minority-owned GPO. We can help you develop and carry out a strong telecom procurement strategy to lower costs and keep them low, even as your needs change.
Our proprietary, innovative analytics give you complete transparency into your organization's telecom spending, plan usage, and utilization rates.
Our group purchasing advantage secures you best-in-class pricing and the most beneficial contract terms. We can help you find cost savings even if you’re a smaller business, and often without having to change carriers.
We'll also help you achieve and maintain full regulatory compliance and better operational efficiency through continuing account management and data reporting and analysis.
Find out more about our approach to wireless telecom procurement, and download a free prospectus. It explains in detail our services and all the benefits working with us offers.