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7 Reasons Companies Use Independent Telecom Consultants

News > 7 Reasons Companies Use Independent Telecom Consultants

7 Reasons Companies Use Independent Telecom Consultants

 

Increasingly, businesses are electing to obtain their telecommunication services from independent telecom consultants instead of direct representatives of carriers. Here are the main reasons why we see this trend occurring in the marketplace today.

1. Single Point of Contact

Regardless of whether your independent telecom consultant (ITC) recommends a single-carrier or multi-carrier solution for your company, you still have a single point of contact to deal with, the person who knows your account best. During the pricing and evaluation process for new carriers, it is typical to request at least three bids and schedule at least two appointments with each carrier. When you use a qualified ITC, you can spend one appointment determining your company's short- and long-term needs, and just one more evaluating the best options available in your market.

2. Your ITC understands your company

Your ITC acts as an assistant buyer for your company once he/she understands your business needs and preferences. The ITC gets to know your organization, your goals, and why and how you make decisions. Why would you want to repeat that process every couple of years with a sales rep you're meeting for the first (and probably last) time?

3. You get the truth, first time, every time

When you use the services of an experienced ITC, you tap into the wealth of knowledge and experience of someone who has been in the field for many years, and most likely with multiple carriers. Your consultant will typically have experience dealing with multiple carriers in your market, including ones without a direct sales force, and can tell you how they actually perform. Who has the most reliable network? Who has billing problems? Who can make the desired install date? Who is going bankrupt? Carriers' sales reps are incentivized to close deals, period; what happens next is another department's concern. An ITC builds his or her business by ensuring that clients are satisfied in the long term.

4. Unbiased opinions of multiple carriers and their product lines

Most carriers have gone to term agreements in the T1 age, so it's crucial to get set up with a carrier that can meet your needs as your business changes or grows. Do they have an MPLS network to support VoIP? Do they do SIP trunking? Can they offer an IP-VPN solution for your remote sites? Your ITC understands the carriers' products and limitations, and can put you in the right solution for your company.

5. Consultants are invested in your success

In telecom sales, as in many industries, compensation plans drive sales behavior. Reps are only paid to bring in new business; clients with questions or problems are directed to the help desk. In fact they are discouraged from maintaining contact after you've signed on the dotted line. ITCs, however, work only on commissions and residuals (small percentage of the monthly telecom bills) and it takes them, in many cases, up to 24 months to earn what the direct sales representative will make 30 days after the sale. ITCs succeed by earning the trust of clients for the long term, so they are highly motivated to assist you in solving service issues. Good consultants aren't just business associates; they become trusted members of your team.

6. More aggressive pricing

It's a fact that indirect sales have more aggressive pricing than direct sales. Indirect works off a 30-percent reduction from direct sales. The belief that direct can get better incentives or better pricing or better service is false.

7. ITCs understand Next Generation technology

Independent telecom consultants will typically be better versed in MPLS, IP-VPN, VOIP, hosted solutions, call center applications, and SIP technologies, because they need to understand multiple carriers' offerings and have attended all of their trainings. Direct representatives will often know a few tweaks to their limited product lines, but they will not have the overall understanding of all that is coming with new technology. No carrier can be the master of all technologies and all niches. So it follows that it is nearly impossible for a direct representative to have the same depth and breadth of knowledge as a consultant. This is important, because correct implementation of new technologies can save business hundreds of thousands annually. That may be the exact edge your company needs to gain the competitive edge in your marketplace. On the other hand, implementing a bleeding-edge technology that is not ready for prime time may cost you more in the long run. Using an experienced ITC who is looking out for your best interests can make all the difference.

For more about getting the best deal on telecom service, contact Scott Minor at 440-210-3244, 330-357-1830 or scott@thectgllc.com.