Consider “Chemistry” When Selecting a Wireless TEM Provider

Over the past 18 years, mindWireless has been writing and rewriting the book on best practices for selecting a telecom expense management provider.  Time and again, our clients ask us to help them define the requirements for an RFP. It can be a bit of a conflict of interest, however they look to us for direction because of our expertise with their program and tenure within the TEM space. Typically, we’ve got the data, the program metrics, and the knowledge of what’s working and what could work better.

We repeatedly hear, after an RFP is awarded, “We selected mindWireless because you understood our culture and tailored your solution delivery on our specific objectives.”  We like to call this understanding of the client “Chemistry”.

There are right and wrong ways to go about selecting the TEM partner for your company, and make no mistake, TEM must be a partnership to succeed.

With the price of smartphones these days, TEM is all about managing and tracking valuable assets, not just plan prices. So here are three points we think are most critical in selecting a wireless TEM provider:

  1. Think Strategically: Are you starting from scratch, do you have an incumbent provider, how many devices, where are they deployed, what’s your annual spend, what do you want to achieve?  Do you just need TEM or could you benefit from provisioning or staging wireless devices?  Would you benefit from outsourcing your wireless employee helpdesk? These are just some of the questions you should be considering.
  2. Research Providers: What kind of provider do you want? TEM is TEM, but the secret sauce is generally with the provider. Can you work with a one-size-fits all solution or is your company like most, needing a TEM program that will deliver multiple services to meet your business processes and organization?
  3. Measure the Chemistry: Selecting a TEM provider is a decision that will impact most if not all of your employees. Choosing the right partner is key, so don’t discount the chemistry between your team and the TEM provider. How flexible are they?  Are their lots of extra costs that indicate a provider that might nickel and dime you to death because objectives shift or change?

This article, Best Practices: How to buy technology expense-management services, appeared in Network World on November 29. It seemed to validate our suggestions and in many aspects mirrors our own playbook for selecting wisely.

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