Check for unused services

Many businesses are paying for communications and IT services that they simply don’t need. These services are costing you money and will continue to do so until you cancel them. Here are our tips to ensure you’re only paying for what you need.

Telephone lines: It’s not uncommon for additional telephone lines to be ordered after an office reorganisation or a move to a new location. List all phone lines that are currently active and check for diversions from old numbers to your current number, as well as for 1300/1800 services that are no longer being used. Cancel all the services you no longer need.

Data Services: If you’ve connected a new high-speed broadband service, it’s possible that you may still be paying for a totally unused connection. Make sure you aren’t — and if you are, cancel it.

Mobile services: Review your mobile packages. Much the same as landlines, it’s highly likely that if you have a large number of active mobile services, some will be going unused. Follow the same steps laid out in the Telephone Lines section to identify any mobile services that you’re paying for unnecessarily and cancel them.

Analyse your spend on staff services

It’s easy to overspend when you allocate services to individual staff members. Here’s what businesses should do about it:

Telephone lines & internet access: Make sure that all the phone lines and data services you’re paying for are 100% valid and need to be maintained by checking that staff are entitled to the services provided and that monetary allowances aren’t being exceeded. Consider purchasing services for staff rather than reimbursing their costs — this gives you better visibility of costs, while also allowing you to reduce rates by purchasing at lower prices than those available to your staff.

Mobiles: Once you’ve identified all the active mobile services you’re currently paying for, there’s an opportunity to make further savings through a fleet arrangement. These allow you to share data usage across your workforce, meaning you pay for average data consumption rather than peak usage and minimise any excess data charges. Fleet arrangements are typically delivered on a SIM-only basis, so they don’t include a handset for every one of your team members.

Move to a hosted service
  • Cloud-based services have become a no-brainer for businesses. Cloud services are just far more efficient than owning and maintaining your own infrastructure. And with so many options available, it’s possible to transition all of your communications and IT requirements into the cloud. Here are a few potential use cases to consider:
  • Email: Rather than maintaining a physical in-house mail server, move to a cloud-based service like Microsoft Office 365.
  • Phone system: Replace your office phone system with a cloud-based system, such as the Microsoft Teams Business Phone extension. This can be particularly effective if you operate from multiple locations, as hosted systems operate as a single system regardless of whether a user is in the office or working from home.
  • Physical handsets: Swap your physical desk phones for so-called “softphones” that exist on a desktop or mobile app.
Consolidate multiple services

If you’re currently paying for several versions of the same service, you could save significant amounts by consolidating them into a single service.

For instance, some businesses have multiple NBN broadband connections running to a single office to provide them with the necessary bandwidth. But those lines could be replaced with a single high-speed fibre broadband service, saving money and potentially improving performance.

The same is often true with phone systems and mail servers. And with mobile phones, you may find it cheaper to consolidate them all within a single plan, rather than splitting them across multiple individual packages.

You should choose services with built-in backup or redundancy to reduce the possible business impact of a service fault.

Update legacy technology

Sticking with old technology might not be the cheapest solution. Legacy technology could end up costing you a lot more in the long run than if you upgrade it.
 
For example, you might assume that your current laggy connection is at least saving you some money, but in reality, older packages are often very expensive versus newer services such as NBN.

Frequently Asked Questions
How can I save money on my mobile phone plan?
The first thing to do is to check that you’re not on an older more expensive plan. The cost of mobile phone plans continues to fall so switching to a newer plan will often save you money. If your business has several mobile phones, consider moving to a fleet plan that allows data sharing. That way you are paying for average usage not peak usage.
How can I save money on my Wi-Fi?
Check your phone’s settings to make sure you use free Wi-Fi rather than paid data wherever possible. For example apps such as Dropbox or iCloud (for cloud storage) have an option to only use Wi-Fi for synching your phone to the cloud.
How can I reduce my data charges?
Using free Wi-Fi rather than paid data is the easiest way to reduce your data charges. If you are using a cloud back up service such as iCloud or Dropbox, check the setting to make sure your data is only synched when your Wi-Fi is active. Also consider watching videos, streaming audio and scheduling system and app upgrades for when you have Wi-Fi coverage.
Which apps use the most data?
Video apps such as YouTube and Netflix can you consume a lot of data very quickly. You’ll use a lot less data if you only watch videos when your Wi-Fi is active. Cloud based back up can also use a substantial amount of data, especially if you are backing up videos. System and app upgrades are also data hungry, so these are best carried out using Wi-Fi.
Does leaving my mobile data on cost money?
Most plans include an Internet data allowance. Providing you don’t go over your allowance, enabling mobile data won’t cost you anything extra. However if you exceed the included allowance, data charges will apply. Warning messages are sent at 50%, 85% and 100% to let you how much data you have left.
Why is my data being used up so quickly?
Check your phone’s settings to make sure Wi-Fi is enabled. If you are inadvertently using mobile data instead of Wi-Fi, you could end up using much more data than expected. You should also check your apps to see how much data they have been using. If you have been uploading videos and photos to social media apps such as Facebook and Instagram you may find they have used more data than expected.

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