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How to Conduct a Telecommunications Audit

How to Conduct a Telecommunications Audit
23
Mar

There are lots of reasons to conduct a telecoms audit: i) Save money, ii) Identify services, iii) Ensure support for lift and emergency lines, iv) Compliance, and simply to prevent Fraud and Abuse. The problem is that it is often quite a challenging task to undertake.

Many consider the simple answer is to identify as much as possible and then cease the rest and wait for someone to yell. But what if you cancel the lift line and someone becomes trapped, or you cancel the intruder alarm line and there is a burglary. The risks of getting it wrong result in almost all organisations paying for services they don’t use.

Our analysis of our clients indicates that approximately 20% of telecoms services are redundant and could be cancelled.

So how do you conduct an audit? Our top ten tips are as follows:

  1. Start with the billing – It should give you the supplier, cost and usage information.
  2. Obtain Contracts – If you don’t have them, suppliers should be able to provide you with a copy of the contract you have with them.
  3. Contract Compliance Check – Compare the charges on the invoices against the contract and query errors.
  4. Create a Database – You need a database of every service: fixed, mobile, conferencing, network, PBX etc.
  5. Identify What You Can – Using old records, information from suppliers, phone numbers on your web site and other internal information, you should be able to identify at least half of your services.
  6. Investigate – The next steps are a little harder and more time consuming. For mobiles, send unknown devices an SMS and if after 3 SMS’s they don’t respond – suspend the service. For fixed you need to call every number and find out what happens. Also cross reference numbers with other suppliers – alarm providers, lift companies, building systems maintainers etc.
  7. Physical Audit – For fixed telecoms services you can conduct a physical audit and inspection but you will need some engineering knowledge and equipment.
  8. Deep Breath – By know you should have been able to identify well over 90% of your services – some of which you will have already cancelled. The last few percentage points are the most difficult and the only option left is to suspend them and wait and see – but put a test process for critical services in place first!
  9. Update Records – Finally you have identified everything – create a final set of records.
  10. Manage – You don’t want to go through this process again! So put in place a strict change management process, which prevents unauthorised people placing orders and ensures you keep your database up to date.

 

If all of that sounds like a nightmare, consider how StableLogic can help and get in touch.