(11/18): When we think of electric cars and sustainable energy, Tesla, Inc has become an industry pacesetter. This fast-moving global enterprise has been an innovator and market influencer since its founding in 2003.
Engaged in the design, development, manufacture, and sale of fully electric vehicles, energy generation and storage systems the company also provides vehicle service centers, supercharger stations, and self-driving capability. The firm’s Automotive segment designs, develops, manufactures, and sells electric cars. The Energy Generation and Storage segment designs, manufactures, installs, sales, and leases stationary energy storage products and solar energy systems, and sells electricity generated by its solar energy systems to customers.
Keeping their global workforce mobile and connected is essential to their business, so in 2017 they initiated a search for a wireless telecommunications expense management (TEM) partner, led by a prior client of mindWireless. Our past clients moving to new positions have become our most valuable sales resources, so we had high hopes with an inside track. But, things happen.
The Big Challenge: Where to Start?
Not surprisingly, Tesla’s infrastructure was completely focused on supporting the innovation and development of new products. Their approach to wireless device management was fairly typical of IT asset management. There were fractured wireless management processes, opportunities for spend and usage analysis functions, and a need for strategic telecom management.
To help the client prove his case, and our worth, mindWireless assisted the Tesla team in developing a complex set of benchmarks and What-If scenarios to help them dig through and manage their carrier relationship. We also performed a preliminary financial analysis that uncovered thousands of dollars in savings. Based on our past working relationship and the assistance we provided in proving TEM worth, the Tesla procurement leader issued a verbal contract, then left the company before it could be signed.
The RFP process began again, with a completely new review team in place, and a much more competitive field. And, there was no longer an insider helping mindWireless. However, the benchmarks and processes we had done in the first review were still in valid. The RFP began with numerous competitors, narrowed to three, including the biggest names and mindWireless.
We won, again, mainly because when asked in final presentation why Tesla should select mindWireless, our response described our flexibility to fit our solution to Tesla’s requirements. Ours is not a cookie-cutter solution. We were able to fit the solution to Tesla’s requirements for the management portal, monthly financial reports, and the branded help desk to meet employee needs. Once again, mindWireless got the contract, and began work in September 2017.
“Tesla challenges us almost daily to dig deep for cost savings. They move at the speed of Tesla, often with requests that should take weeks, if not months, of planning and want it done in a matter of days. And we deliver!” ~ mindWireless Financial Analyst
Results: Millions in Savings and Recognized Strategic Value
While telecom expense management was the initial goal, Tesla has become an end-to-end strategic telecom management partner. A wide variety of wireless devices; including smartphones, tablets and air-cards are included in the lines currently under management. The mindWireless financial analysis team has customized a monthly value report that demonstrates key metrics of savings from total spend down to device cost to user allocations by department.
mindWireless quickly identified and eliminated a significant number of zero usage devices in the first few months. The savings continue to mount, exceeding initial savings forecasts in just a year by identifying billing errors and moving users to more cost-efficient rate plans.
mindWireless is acutely aware that proving its worth is a daily requirement with Tesla. And Tesla recognizes the effort and the successes daily with recognition of their dedicated Employee Help Desk representatives and the results driven by the financial analysis.
Tesla offers the kind of challenge we thrive on – fast, innovative, and responsive.