With the worst days of the recent recession likely behind us, many organizations are loosening the purse strings and looking at strategic IT investments to grow the business and outperform the competition. One area that is gaining tremendous acceleration is workforce mobility.
According to Gartner Research, IT spending is expected to increase due to the adoption of tablets, smartphones, their applications and support services. While the proliferation of smartphones may offer a boon to productivity, it also creates new IT management challenges, particularly as more organizations allow or support personal mobile devices. Part of an organization’s smartphone strategy includes choosing appropriate communication technology and service plans, then managing the plethora of available rate plans, devices, and actual usage – all of which becomes increasingly complex and inaccurate with manual or disparate processes.
As more employees are armed with Androids, iPhones, iPads and BlackBerry devices, organizations need to be proactive in managing the costs of wireless communication to avoid overspending. Taking a disciplined approach to IT financial management can help organizations reduce or redirect their mobile spend.
An IT financial management solution provides a consolidated platform with visibility into data, enabling IT organizations to easily and clearly view employee level activity in an effort to better understand actual costs, usage and patterns. With this insight, they can then control costs or change consumption behavior.
For example, providing business unit managers a normalized monthly invoice across vendors which identifies the business units’ wireless consumption enables them to review statements for accuracy, ensure they are paying for technology they are actually using and most importantly, help the organization control costs. They can gain insight into actual usage of voice plans, data plans or add-ons and have visibility into what is not being used or used in excess of contract agreements.
Increased IT cost transparency in and of itself can contribute to more responsible behavior and reduced costs. An example of this is a global software organization spending $USmillions on its wireless communication that made no changes in demand or spending – they simply provided a CIO Invoice to all employees with a company owned wireless device which would allow the employee to view their consumption. Providing that invoice at the employee level increased their awareness of service levels and how they were using their mobile devices which in turn, drove a change in behavior and allowed the organization to reduce mobile costs within a few short weeks.
Being able to view mobile investments holistically across the organization also delivers insight into the most cost effective mobile devices and enables companies to take advantage of economies of scale. Without increasing transparency into costs and usage and IT expenditures, how can your organization know if it’s spending more than it should for mobility?