An 8-Part Series

The Telecom Expense Management (TEM) Industry Has to Change

Part Two: Value Beyond Cost Savings

Part 3: The Buy & Sell Process

Part 4: The Dichotomy of Savings

Part 5: The Buyer & Seller Relationship

Part 6: Building a Center of Excellence

Part 7: Message to the Buyers

Part 7: Message to the Sellers

The TEM Industry has to Change An Eight-Part Article Series

We’ll be publishing these eight articles between September and December 2022. Be sure to subscribe to AOTMP® Insights to be notified of the latest releases. 

  • So much has changed and yet so much has stayed the same.
  • $4+ trillion in products, services, and solutions … a huge industry.
  • There is a reason we can’t get more than a handful of $50 million plus TEM providers.
  • Why is it that many other industries have gone from nothing to billion-dollar industries … but not TEM?
  • The service provider environment – carriers, mobility providers and others.
  • Call it technology, cloud, SaaS, network, or anything else … it doesn’t fix the problem.
  • Why is there so much churn in this industry?
  • We’re stuck in the past – the hamster wheel
  • The impact of private equity – what it has helped and what it has not.
  • Opportunities are everywhere … for businesses, for vendors and for financial partners.
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • When will enterprises place value on other aspects of TEM, and not just cost savings?
  • Is there value on just having an accurate inventory?
  • Is there value on just getting your invoices processed and ready to pay on time?
  • Is there value on leveraging the buyer knowledge with seller technology?
  • How do vendors better demonstrate value other than hard-dollar cost savings?
  • A great presentation with not one word of hard dollar cost savings … would a buyer buy it?
  • How do organizations like Salesforce or ServiceNow sell without a focus on hard dollar savings?
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • What must change in the selling and buying process?
  • Procurement has a role, but it’s not to stop all communications between the buyers and the sellers.
  • Communications must change, be more transparent and open throughout the process.
  • The fishing expedition – why do enterprises send out 300 question RFP’s, make the TEM vendors jump through hoops, when they plan to stick with what they have, or they don’t even have budget approval?
  • What do the vendors gain by pitching smoke and mirrors and saying they can do everything, even when they can’t?
  • You’re looking for your 4th, 5th, 6th or even 7th TEM provider. Isn’t it time to look in the mirror?
  • You’re pitching to an organization on their 4th TEM provider? That should prompt a different discussion.
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • Say What? The $30 million annual spender who saves $1 million each year. Soon it should be free?
  • The more spend I manage, the more I need to charge versus the more savings I create for my customer, the better I am.
  • My TEM provider is no longer saving me any money and therefore I can’t justify the cost and need to change providers? Is the provider doing a poor job or a good job?
  • Save Me Money? Yes, but not so much that it makes me look bad.
  • What do you mean you found me $5 million in savings? That’s going to cost me my job.
  • The CIO of a $100 million spender who said “if you save me more than $1 million a year, you will be fired”
  • It’s Ground Hog Day. I keep saving the same money over and over again.
  • What about the root cause? Where is the focus on the core challenges?
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • When will there be real partnerships created between buyers and sellers?
  • Why is it that buyers and sellers can’t seem to communicate at the first sign of trouble … and it only gets worse from there?
  • When will the enterprises realize that there is no perfect solution in this very complex and difficult industry?
  • When does an accurate inventory become the most important discussion point?
  • Everyone wants a great relationship, but enterprises oftentimes don’t let the vendors talk to the business owners during the initial sales process. How does that create a foundation for a successful relationship?
  • The Quarterly Business Review (QBR) … the focus needs to change. It’s not about all the great things we have done. We just love to drive from the rear-view mirror and you know how that ends up.
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • What is a Telecom and Mobility Management Center of Excellence anyways?
  • Vendors and business customers really can work together to build a world class telecom and mobility management environment.
  • Who are the critical stakeholders on the vendor side and what role do they play?
  • Who are the critical stakeholders on the enterprise / buyer side and what role do they play?
  • Telecom and mobility management functions don’t need to be the support organization in your company – position it to be a driver of business results.
  • How do all parties show more value and contributions to the business?
  • Quotes, recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • AOTMP®’s top five recommendations to buyers.
  • Recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.
  • AOTMP®’s top five recommendations to sellers.
  • Recommendations, or commitments from our sponsors.

Series Overview

AOTMP® is a 19-year-old company that has both vendor and business customers in the telecom, mobility, and IT management industry. We have been consultants and trusted advisors for all customers in the past. We have collected data from our database of over 100,000 emailable industry professionals. We know what works. We know what doesn’t. Today, AOTMP® is an information services company supporting telecom, mobility, and IT professionals across the globe through training, certifications, association memberships, events & programs, best practices, publications, resources, and professional development. 

We see the great relationships. We see the churn. We hear about the great buyers and the unreasonable buyers. We hear about the effective and the ineffective vendors. We see the buyers who will never have a successful TEM program until they change internally. We see the sellers who will say anything and go beyond reasonable ethics to get a deal. We hear the vendors who say they have never lost a customer, yet we can easily dispute it. We see the enterprise buyers who put 100% of the blame on their vendor, yet the greatest challenge is within their own organization. We see the many happy relationships and we see the many relationships that just exist because it’s too painful to change. And we see the major investor wins along with huge investor losses in the tens of millions of dollars. We see it all. 

As we watch many other industries become multi-billion-dollar industries, from the CRM industry to the bill payment industry to ITSM with ServiceNow growing to nearly $6 billion in 20 years, the TEM segment of our telecom, mobility, and IT management industry just continues to struggle. That’s concerning given the significant opportunities on both the buyer and seller side, which in turn drives the investor side. There are so many growth opportunities; however, they are offset by so many inhibitors. It all just says, as buyers and sellers, we just haven’t yet figured out how to execute. There is no reason we can’t work together and have billion-dollar telecom and mobility management vendors serving world-class telecom and mobility management Centers of Excellence, with both sides making a much more significant contribution to overall business results. 

So, the question is how do we move the industry forward? How do we move to a new level? Or can we? If not, what happens to the industry? Does the waste and inefficiency just continue, and we live with it? Do we just continue to make marginal improvement? Do we continue in the very fast-moving hamster wheel we live in? After all, we do have a lot of great vendors and a lot of great buyer environments, but not enough to make an industry out of the huge opportunity sitting in front of our eyes.

Given the multi-billion-dollar industry opportunity, offset by the significant growth inhibitors, we had to do something. We had to start. It will be like moving a mountain, but for the good of the industry, we had to take the first step. We started with two articles, the first focused on vendor recommendations for buyers followed by buyers’ recommendations for vendors. Then, in July, we held our first Industry Solution Showcase where we re-imagined how buyers and sellers connect. It was a great success from both sides. Everyone is looking for something different. 

Armed with all the insight and experience, and feedback from the first three initiatives, we decided to author this eight-part article series, not to just point out all the challenges, but to bring awareness to all the growth opportunities right in front of us if we can work together to affect change. It must start somewhere, and it starts with one vendor and one buyer, then two vendors and two buyers, and builds from there. 

You can follow along with the eight-part series in our AOTMP® Insights publication. And you can be assured there will be more initiatives to follow. It doesn’t stop here. Already in planning are initiatives at our annual AOTMP® Engage conference, potential webinars, and promoting Industry Value Challenge submissions we mention and receive throughout the Series. And there will be plenty more. 

Given what we have seen in the industry over the years, along with what we see and hear today, we believe the greatest opportunities for growth for both the vendors and the businesses lie in five core areas. You will see this theme throughout the Series.

We believe the greatest opportunities for growth for both the vendors and the businesses lie in five core areas.

Improving the buy and sell process.

Agree to open and transparent communications throughout the process, regardless of the issue.

Developing stronger vendor – customer partnerships.

Problems are going to happen; commit to focusing on solutions, not penalizing each other.

Focusing on value beyond cost savings.

Help each other identify, quantify, and realize value beyond cost savings.

Building world class telecom and mobility management Centers of Excellence.

Work together to build environments that contribute to overall strategic business results.

Accelerating buyer and seller growth opportunities.

Help each other identify opportunities for growth in their respective businesses.

Value Beyond Cost Savings

As you might recall, a key motivation to write this series is that we can’t seem to grow the industry. A big reason behind that is our intense focus, as an industry, on savings versus other value we all bring to the table. We just can’t seem get past the value of savings. It has been the focus for years on both the buy side and the sell side. Significant opportunity exits, though, for the buy side to create much more value for their business and for the sell side to create much more value for their customers and their respective businesses.  

In 1989, when we started in this industry, it was all about savings. In the 1990’s it was all about savings, mostly with manual processes. In the 2000’s, we got busy and began automating some of the process, getting invoices on CDs and EDI feeds and doing basic auditing with some limited automation. But it was still all about savings. Then in the 2010’s, we got better at the entire management lifecycle, but still with savings at the core of everything. If our solutions didn’t provide or were closely tied to hard dollar savings, it wasn’t going to happen. In the 2020’s, we are finally starting to bring more value to the table beyond cost savings, but who really cares beyond the TEM buyers and the TEM sellers? Not too many.

32 years later and we are still all about savings on invoices and contracts with a limited group that really cares.

We’ll keep the dichotomy of savings conversation for a future article as we are still trying to get our minds around how you can save $1 million a year on a $10 million spend that goes up by 10% a year. Shouldn’t it be about free by now? We all have an answer, but how we measure savings, and use that to show value, is a huge part of the challenge that holds this industry back. There are many other measurements that should be used and would be a lot more beneficial.   

Savings, Savings, and More Savings
– Who Cares?

Let’s really ask ourselves, who cares? Who really cares about savings? Those of us that find it? Yes, we definitely care. It makes us look good and feel good and we can brag about it. The more we find, the better. Right? We would argue the more you find, the worse your environment is being managed. Nevertheless, we the TEM group and the TEM providers, care about savings. How about the IT leadership? Do they care? Maybe or maybe not. How about company leadership? We will argue they don’t care. So, with savings, we are just amusing our own selves. We are making ourselves feel good. It doesn’t really bring value that anyone outside of our TEM, or maybe the IT group, cares about.

Does the leader team of a 500-unit restaurant chain care whether you are paying 50 cents or $1.00 for your heads of lettuce? No.

Does the leader team of a 500-unit restaurant chain care if the food quality is causing poor remarks and lack of repeat business? Likely.

Does the leader team of a 500-unit restaurant chain care if the 50-cent lettuce is causing a reputation issue on social media from poor food quality? Yes.

Does the leader team of a 500-unit restaurant chain care if the $1.00 lettuce is part of a dining experience that is getting national attention and driving business to the chain? Yes.

You see, it’s all about how we present what we do and what others care about. At the company leadership levels it’s not about how you saved 50 cents or not. It’s the results they care about. 

So, in our telecom expense management world, the sooner we can tie what we do to what the various groups in our company care about, the sooner we have a chance to really accelerate the growth of our industry. 

The first order of business is to identify the groups in your, or your customers’, organization and what they care about. Forget telecom and mobility for a minute. What is important to these other groups every day? What do they care about? While we refer to the TEM group, the IT group and the leader group, there are many more groups. What does the sales group care about? What does the operations group care about? What does the HR group care about? Every group has something not related to telecom and mobility that is important to them. Find out what those things are. More on this in a minute when we talk about tying what our telecom, mobility, and IT management industry does to what these other groups care about, or what their objectives are.

The Hamster Wheel

Businesses want savings. Vendors pitch savings. And so, the industry continues to run, and run hard … in a hamster wheel. We are going nowhere fast. So, when will businesses start putting more value on other aspects of TEM? And when will vendors get beyond so much emphasis on cost savings? That’s up to us as an industry. Are we going to keep running hard and going nowhere or are we going to start taking a step outside of our fast-moving wheel? 

There are two groups … 

Some of us will keep running hard and going nowhere as we are afraid to step off, for we might fall. But we must realize that sometimes you need to take a step backwards in order to take two steps forward. So, what will this group of hard running industry drivers do? Some will read this article and then go back to doing the same thing they always do, working to improve. 

Others will take a different approach. They will read this article and come up with a few ideas on their own to execute on. They will take that risk in belief they will make a difference for their customers, for their company, and for the industry. Which group will you be part of?

Demonstrating Value Beyond Hard Dollar Savings

Let’s start by calling it the Industry Value Challenge. First, forget your technology solution demos. That should be the last thing you present or the last thing you want to see. The technology demo is just how you do what you both talked about doing. I can’t tell you how many times we see both the buyer and seller thinking the first order of business is to see a demo. That should be the last thing. The very first discussion should be around who cares about what and who has what objectives.  

By the way, selling and buying a TEM solution is just like building technology. The more time you spend on the front end talking about needed outcomes, requirements, contingencies, what’s important to everyone, documentation, etc., the easier it is to build and the less time and money it will take. So, get rid of the demos upfront. Put the demo at the end when you can demo or see exactly what you are looking for and how it can deliver on what both parties spent significant time talking about. More to come on this in Article 3 – The Buy and Sell Process.

As an industry, we are focused too much on the features and functionality and not enough on outcomes important to all stakeholder groups. Remember the 50 shades of beige from Article 1?

Industry Challenge #1

Tell us about a working session you had with a prospect or vendor that focused only on outcomes that are important to non-TEM groups and didn’t include a demo.

Before we regress too far, back to the Industry Value Challenge. AOTMP® wants to see presentations from vendors that don’t speak to one word of cost savings. And it should never be about all the great things you, as the vendor, do. How do you know what is important to the business buyer at that point? And remember the 50 shades of beige from Article 1? Show three slides that speak to the value you provide beyond cost savings.

We want to see presentations that demonstrate value beyond cost savings. We want to see presentations that bring value that’s important to the non-TEM groups. How does Salesforce sell? How does ServiceNow sell? Somehow, they have become multi-billion organizations without pitching cost savings.

Industry Challenge #2

Vendors should create 3 general slides showing their value beyond cost savings. 

Now onto the buyer side. We want to see what’s important to at least three other groups in your organization. Do not include your TEM group. When you, as a buyer, can start thinking and buying based on what is important to those in the groups outside of your own is when this industry and all the buyer and seller opportunities will start to accelerate. 

Industry Challenge #3

Buyers should create one slide for each of up to five groups, excluding the TEM group, that document what each group cares about / what their objectives are.

So, for this Industry Value Challenge we want to hear from vendors and business buyers. For vendors, we want to see your best value beyond cost savings pitch and for business buyers, we want to see your best value add map showing what other groups in your organization care about? 

This exercise is where we can start to move this industry forward one vendor and one business buyer at a time. Then two. Then three. You get the picture.

Everything will be kept confidential.

Key Value Points for the TEM Team

First, for the least important group, the TEM group. What’s important to your group or your customer, beyond cost savings? And don’t get too granular. Think five slides showing five areas of importance and why. 

Yes, savings is important. We don’t need to spend time talking about savings. We all want it and we all need it and it has got this industry where it is today … not very far. And while the TEM teams (buyers and sellers) care about savings, it loses value with nearly every other group in the organization. And the higher in the organization you go, the less value it has. 

So, what is important to your TEM team or to the TEM teams you are selling to. Leave savings out of every conversation. Start the thought process with things like …

Is there value in just having an accurate inventory?

  • What are three value points of having an accurate inventory?
  • And by the way, what other groups find value in your accurate inventory?

Is there value in just getting your invoices processed and ready to pay on time?

  • What are three value points for processing invoices?
  • What other groups find value in your invoice processing?

Is there value in leveraging the buyer knowledge with seller technology and knowledge?

  • What is that value?
  • What other groups find value in the partnership between the TEM buyer and TEM seller?

What else is important to your TEM team or the TEM team you are selling to?

  • And who else is it important to?

You likely came to the same answers as many others. There is value inside the TEM team that isn’t of value to anyone else. That’s ok, but for us to accelerate opportunities, and the industry, we have to find what’s of value to others and then map what we do within the TEM team to that value.

Key Value Points for the IT Leader Team

Now for the IT leader team. Do they care about savings? Maybe or maybe not. It depends on the company and the team, but it’s less important to them than it is to the TEM team. So, what is most important to them? Do we know what they care about? What are their top 5 objectives? We need to know if we are going to advance this industry. We have to create value beyond cost savings that other groups care about. 

It’s very simple. We all need to know what the IT leader team cares about. What is important to them? What are their objectives? Is savings on the top of their list? Likely not. Is security on the top of the list? How about efficiency? How about supporting other objectives for the company? What about risk mitigation? What about the overall internal user experience? Can we help drive their objectives? You bet. Maybe not all of them, but certainly some of them. 

A key component of advancing the industry is first understanding what is important to the IT leader team. If we don’t know that, then we continue to run in the hamster wheel and go nowhere fast. 

And of course, keep in the back of your mind how telecom, mobility, and IT management can contribute and help drive those objectives.

Key Value Points for Company Leadership

Now for the leadership team. You get the point by now. What does the company leadership team care about?

Do they care about your TEM savings? No. Do they care about all the challenges with the telecom and mobility invoices? No. Do they care how people get their mobile devices? No. 

Do they care about top line revenue growth? Do they care about competitive advantage? Do they care about market perception? What about risk mitigation? Do they want to be perceived as the most innovative in the industry? What do they care about? What are their most important 5 objectives?

And again, keep in the back of your mind how telecom, mobility, and IT management can contribute and help drive those objectives. 

Sharing Value Points
Make Your Voice Heard

And finally, we need to make our voice heard. We do provide value beyond cost savings. We can contribute to business results that others care about. We are not “just” the telecom, mobility, and IT people that keep things connecting and running. We are all about business results.

So, what are we doing to show the value of what we do, value that others care about? Are we making our voice heard? Who knows what we do outside the TEM team? Does anyone care? They might not now. It’s our role to start showing the value we bring. Even if they don’t care right now, one day they will when they realize we can help drive business results and help them achieve their objectives.

If you have seen any of the AOTMP® personal branding sessions, it is just like that. We have to showcase our value, value that others might care about or will one day care about. We have to position ourselves. We have to shout our contributions from the rooftop. We have to create our own visibility. We have to make our own case. Nobody is going to do it for us. Most importantly, we just have to start. We have to take the first step.  

We should be proud of what we bring to the table and how we support and drive business results in the organization. We are not just the people who keep things running.

We can bring value to the table that drives business results – business results that the company cares about.

Industry Challenge #4

Business buyers and vendor sellers should work together to create and distribute three reports. Each should be no more than three slides or one page.

Quarterly Company leader team report. Key contributions made towards the leader team objectives.

Quarterly IT leader team report. Key contributions made to the IT leader team objectives.

Quarterly “Pick a 3rd Group” team report. Key contributions made to another group.

Everything will be kept confidential.

The Industry Starts to Change

This telecom, mobility, and IT management industry starts to change when the telecom, mobility, and IT management teams, both vendor and buyer sides, spend time understanding and mapping their contributions to other non-TEM groups in the company and what’s important to them.

  1. The vendor seller and the business buyer both understand what is important to company leadership and maps telecom, mobility, and IT management contributions to those points.
  2. The vendor seller and the business buyer both understand what is important to the IT leader team and maps telecom, mobility, and IT management contributions to those points.
  3. The vendor seller and the business buyer both understand what is important to other groups and maps telecom, mobility, and IT management contributions to those points.
  4. The vendor seller and the business buyer both understand what is important to the TEM team, beyond cost savings, and maps telecom, mobility, and IT management initiatives to those points.

… and in that order. There is no other order that will serve to advance our own objectives and the industry.

And with this thought process, we will quickly find that the conversations are based on value beyond cost savings.  

The quickest way to grow yourself, your department, or your company is by helping others be successful. The same holds true with telecom, mobility, and IT management. 

When we start helping others realize their objectives, that is when we start changing our industry. 

The Challenge

We listed four Industry Value Challenges in this document. Remember, change starts with one business buyer and one vendor seller making a change. Then two and two, and then we start to change our industry and create more opportunities for everyone. 

Business Buyers

– get with one of your vendor sellers and jointly answer one or more of our Industry Value Challenges.

Vendor Sellers

– get with one of your business buyers and jointly answer one or more of our Industry Value Challenges.

While responses will be confidential of course, it will tell us that we have begun to make a change, one business buyer and one vendor seller at a time. In the meantime, we are discussing ways to leverage submissions for the benefit of all parties and the industry, with your permission of course, to keep this initiative to change the industry moving forward.

AOTMP Industry Growth Partners

AOTMP® Industry Growth Partners are organizations that are committed to “moving the needle” in one or more of the following areas:

Improving the buy and sell process → Agree to open and transparent communications throughout the process, regardless of the issue.

Developing stronger vendor-customer partnerships → Problems are going to happen; commit to focusing on solutions, not penalizing each other.

Focusing on creating or realizing value beyond cost savings → Help each other identify, quantify, and realize value beyond cost savings.

Building world class telecom and mobility management Centers of Excellence → Work together to build environments that contribute to overall strategic business results.

Accelerating buyer and seller growth opportunities → Help each other identify opportunities for growth in their respective business.

AOTMP Industry Growth Partner logo badge

Join us if you are:

A buyer/business customer who wants to capitalize on more opportunities to bring a greater contribution and more value to your organization.

A seller/vendor who wants to see more opportunities to grow and help build world-class telecom and mobility management organizations.

An investor/financial partner in the market who wants to see more opportunities and a much higher ROI from telecom and mobility management investments.

Sakon is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ The Value of the Telecom Inventory, Device, Contracts, Utilization and Price Benchmarking Data that TEM has. I have heard too many enterprises wanting to stay away from Telecom because it is too complex to understand and manage. This leaves room to improve the user experience at home and at the office, leverage new connectivity technology to allow for innovation and greater productivity and ensure best telecom cost structure at the same time.

➞ The Value of Telecom and Device focused partnerships. This is a highly specialized competency area within organizations and requires on-demand expertise and capabilities. So if you are planning to roll out new devices to employees, migrate network technologies or source new contracts, there is great value in having a dedicated, nimble, experienced partner with best in class technology and people to help deliver results.

– Dan Hughes, President 

Asignet is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ Operational RPA and AI will enable Hyperautomation to create great impact in the IT expense Management Industry. 

➞ Low Code Software – We are already seeing how the industry is starting to move towards Low Code software usage to improve business process efficiencies on average of 30% – Invoice Inventory and Contract Management.

– Jason Koenigsberg, Executive Vice President 

CloudAdmin is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

Teams need to collaborate together – Software that allows collaboration across finance and IT, enabling both teams to work together seamlessly with real time reporting and just in time processes.

→ Decentralized decision making – Everyone in the organization can take ownership of their cloud usage against a budget and allow the decentralization of decision making for optimization and resource usage.

– Pawel Gieniec, Founder and CEO 

Motus is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ Executives need to look beyond just savings and even service execution in enterprise mobility programs. Employee satisfaction and productivity are more important than ever in today’s work environment. Whether it’s supporting Corporate Liable, BYOD or hybrid programs, mobility should be viewed as a benefit that can help attract and retain talent.

➞ If cost savings on telecom bills is the only measure of success for your company, you will eventually minimize the value on both sides of the relationship. This is why many companies seek new partners and end up disappointed. Innovation is key as more devices and platforms are added to corporate environments and a narrow focus on carrier savings and MMS/TEM fees will make it difficult to achieve growth and build a true Center of Excellence.

– Mitch Black, Executive Vice President – Device Solutions

Lightyear is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ Data represents a huge area of unrecognized value to IT leadership. Enterprise IT buyers often “buy blind,” lacking data on price benchmarks, vendor performance, and more that would otherwise make an RFP fairer and more efficient. Telecom is the least transparent technology-adjacent sector for enterprise buyers.

➞ Software-driven automation is another huge area for potential unrecognized value to IT leadership. IT procurement staff today spends a significant percentage of their time on tedious, manual labor tasks that add limited value to buying / renewal / vendor relations processes such as requesting quotes, following up on vendor requests, relaying the same RFP scope 10x, and more. These tasks could be automated, and unfortunately take focus away from the most strategic aspects of procurement which deserve more attention. Workflow automation focused on the lowest value, most oft-repeated tasks can generate lots of value for the modern enterprise.

– Dennis Thankachan, CEO and Co-Founder

Valmont Industries is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ Vendor Stewardship is paramount to turn transactional vendors into business partners.    

➞ True Business Partners help the business (IT’s Consumer) derive value and make profit in the market place. Whether it’s an IoT SIM, a tablet for a sales presentation, a International Toll Free number, a Zoom Webinar subscription, when the vendor – who wants to be a partner realizes how we utilize these commodity items to promote, provide, deliver information or solutions, they then develop themselves from a transactional vendor to a valued partner.  These partners are notorious for helping us right fit other solutions in their portfolios in ways we didn’t think to engage them.  

– Glenn Leatherwood, IT Manager

Calero-MDSL is showing their commitment to change by becoming an AOTMP® Industry Growth Partner.

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From your perspective, where are the two greatest areas of unrecognized value in this industry that might be important to IT leadership and/or organization leadership and why?

➞ Holistic expense management platform: Hard cost savings are a tangible calculation, but a purpose-built all-encompassing TEM solution can uncover hidden savings and drive greater ROI. Consolidating telecom, device, and SaaS expenses into a singular platform drives visibility and efficiency, leveraging smarter dashboards and powerful analytics to identify areas of optimization, and streamline management to refocus employee hours. 

➞ Vision: The right TEM partner will look beyond today and take a visionary approach to their solution. Configurability is key to future-proofing TEM spend, ensuring that the solution holds long-term value for the customer by meeting today’s needs, and scaling to support the evolution of enterprise technology. 

– Scott Gilbert, CEO

Background

AOTMP® is a global organization, empowering professionals in the dynamic $4+ trillion telecom, mobility, and IT management industry. AOTMP® delivers value through training, certifications, association memberships, events & programs, best practices, publications, resources, and professional development. Learn more at www.aotmp.com.

As we watch many other industries become multi-billion-dollar industries, from the CRM industry to the bill payment industry to ITSM with ServiceNow growing to nearly $6 billion in 20 years, the TEM segment of our telecom, mobility, and IT management industry just continues to struggle. That’s concerning given the significant opportunities on both the buyer and seller side, which in turn drives the investor side. There are so many growth opportunities; however, they are offset by so many inhibitors. It all just says, as buyers and sellers, we just haven’t yet figured out how to execute. There is no reason we can’t work together and have billion-dollar telecom and mobility management vendors serving world-class telecom and mobility management Centers of Excellence, with both sides making a much more significant contribution to overall business results. So, the question is how do we move the industry forward? How do we move to a new level? Or can we? If not, what happens to the industry? Does the waste and inefficiency just continue, and we live with it? Do we just continue to make marginal improvement? Do we continue in the very fast-moving hamster wheel we live in? After all, we do have a lot of great vendors and a lot of great buyer environments, but not enough to make an industry out of the huge opportunity sitting in front of our eyes. 

Given the multi-billion-dollar industry opportunity, offset by the significant growth inhibitors, we had to do something. We had to start. It will be like moving a mountain, but for the good of the industry, we had to take the first step. We started with two articles, the first focused on vendor recommendations for buyers followed by buyers’ recommendations for vendors. Then, in July, we held our first Industry Solution Showcase where we re-imagined how buyers and sellers connect. Now we are going to take it a step further and explore the industry, the challenges, and the opportunities, all in an eight-part series to be published in AOTMP® Insights.

Tim Lybrook
CEO

Timothy C. Colwell
Executive Vice President

Read the Whole Series

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Part 3: The Buy & Sell Process

Part 4: The Dichotomy of Savings

Part 5: The Buyer & Seller Relationship

Part 6: Building a Center of Excellence

Part 7: Message to the Buyers

Part 7: Message to the Sellers