Recapping IBM and Telecom Expense Management in 2012
December 27, 2012
By Rachel Ramsey, TMCnet Web Editor
As 2012 finishes wrapping up and 2013 quickly approaches, now is a perfect time to reflect on the past year. 2012 was a big year for companies looking to cut costs and increase productivity, and that’s exactly what IBM provides.
One of the biggest developments in term of telecommunications for IBM in 2012 was the acquisition of the Emptoris Rivermine (News - Alert) Telecom Expense Management (TEM) solution, which strengthened IBM's (News - Alert) global telecom offering by combining the software and managed services assets of the Emptoris Rivermine solution with IBM’s comprehensive telecom management capabilities.
The IBM Emptoris Rivermine Telecom Expense Management solution enables companies to reduce telecom expenses by actively managing the full mobile and network-related communications lifecycle. The solution streamlines and automates the entire telecom lifecycle including inventory management, procurement and order management, invoice processing, auditing and cost allocation, mobile expense and device management and advanced business intelligence and reporting.
Another highlight of 2012, IBM was ranked as a “Leader” in the Gartner (News - Alert) Magic Quadrant for Telecom Expense Management report, which reviewed more than 20 TEM solutions in March.
The proliferation of mobile devices and growing telecom costs are driving increased adoption of TEM and mobile device management (MDM) solutions, and Gartner states that the global TEM market is expected to grow at 20 percent annually and represent a $1.4 billion market by 2013.
IBM is uniquely positioned to address this market demand and support implementations globally via its 10 global TEM competency centers and three global delivery centers that are located in major geographic regions around the world. In addition, IBM has physical presence in more than 170 countries, and it coordinates amongst a combination of local and global resources to best meet the implementation needs of its customers. Global capabilities in TEM are critical because of varying regulations and standards by market, for instance, data privacy standards in Germany and Spain, and invoice restrictions in Japan. IBM is also seeing strong growth in TEM managed services.
The industry is observing a shift whereby telecom management is gaining a broader profile and position in the global enterprise. Whereas historically TEM used to be a siloed, specialty point solution, sought by telecom experts, it is increasingly becoming a much larger initiative in the organization, often integrated into broader corporate telecom network strategies and/or overall procurement strategies.
IBM is seeing telecom expense management become part of a solution to solve a larger enterprise challenge: how to best manage enterprise telecom and data networks. Telecom management encompasses a broader spectrum of activities beyond TEM alone: it involves the design and procurement of the network, the physical and financial optimization, daily operational management and ongoing financial management.
According to IBM officials, it is only when all these disciplines are performed together, using advanced technology, that a corporation can reap the greatest rewards. Once a TEM solution ensures that the telecom invoices and data are clean, enterprises can begin to approach telecom management more holistically.
On the procurement front, IBM is observing telecom increasingly becoming a targeted spend category. IBM is well-positioned here, as it is the only vendor that offers a TEM solution as part of a broader procurement suite including solutions for spend analysis, sourcing, contract lifecycle management and services procurement and supplier lifecycle management.
IBM Emptoris Rivermine Telecom Expense Management provides enterprises with greater visibility and control over the telecom lifecycle and related spend, allowing them to streamline their telecom operations and dramatically reduce costs.
The solution and related managed services help companies reduce costs by getting increasing telecom, mobile and network spending under control; gain visibility by gaining a holistic view of the telecom lifecycle across business units, carriers and services including contracts, invoices and inventory; optimize networks by optimizing wireline and mobile communications networks for reduced costs and improved service; and manage mobility by proactively managing mobile devices and corporate wireless costs for optimized savings and policy compliance.
The company has had an exciting year with many industry insights and innovations to help the growth of telecom expense management. With 2013 right around the corner, the tech giant is showing no sign of slowing down, so the upcoming year is bound to hold even more than 2012.
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Edited by Jamie Epstein