How To Source a Telecom Provider for Internet, Phone, and Cloud Services
A few of my clients have asked what my process is for making carrier recommendations. First, we must understand the requirement. Establish the specification, we can then stack rank the product offers by prioritizing some of the various factors: price, reliability and performance, account management, post-sales support, contract terms, and Service Level Agreement (SLA). I will go over these in greater detail on future blogs, here is a brief synopsis:
One would think this is straight forward, but that is not true. There are ways some carriers pad the cost, more on that in contract terms.
Reliability and Performance
Is the service linear or protected? Does the customer have a specific expectation? The protected service standard is 99.999% uptime, linear we strive for at least 99.5% availability. Does the provider have customer testimonials they can share on their performance?
Account management is an essential element. The account team is your door to the provider. They need to be your advocate, a client's employee that works for the provider. They need to have the authority to correct faults.
Post-sales covers a wide area, service order processing, provisioning, testing and acceptance, NOC/Customer Care support, billing, dispute resolution, and many more.
Contract Terms and SLA
We must be in total agreement with the contract terms. Areas that to monitor: start billing date, fees and taxes applied, term length, mean time to repair, credit schedule for SLA violations, force majeure, right to cancel, liabilities, planned maintenance, emergency maintenance, and more. These all need close attention. Some fees added should be considered as part of the product, schedule maintenance should have a not exceed 8 hours a month, the billing start date should be when the client accepts the service after thorough testing.
At 3 Eagles IT Solutions, we analyze all areas and make concise recommendations. We will review all offerings and put the best network at the best cost with uncompromising results.