Are You Overspending on Mobile Device Management? 3 Questions to Ask 

Overspending on Mobile_Main blog page

Back in 2009, Gartner reported that 80% of businesses were overspending on their mobile devices and mobile device management programs. Here we are, 15 years later, and this report might as well have been published today. If anything, an explosion of endpoints and the remote work revolution have only compounded this problem. What’s more, most businesses aren’t even aware of the waste in their mobile fleet and management programs.  

Costs can easily fly under the radar, especially in sprawling IoT and mobility environments, draining IT budgets and productivity. Research shows the right approach to mobile device management makes all the difference – specifically, cost savings of up to 30% and 52% greater productivity. 

As a company that manages 14 million mobile devices and optimizes $34 billion in annual IT spend, Tangoe’s Managed Mobility Services help businesses clear the haze of their mobility programs to reduce spending, increase efficiency, and drive savings. Our team of mobile technology experts drill into clients’ data, taking stock of their mobile data services, finding out how much they’re overspending and, most importantly, fixing problems and saving money.  

How much is your business potentially overspending on mobility services? Here are three questions to ask as a starting point.  

Question 1: How many mobile devices and desk phones do we actually have? 

Most people hardly touch the hard phone on their desk, if ever. Even at 100% on-site offices, employees are more apt to use collaboration apps like Microsoft Teams and Slack, leveraging their laptop or iPad to make VoIP calls. Desk phone features like call forwarding, sequential ringing, and conferencing? There’s now an app for that. Mobile phones have become essential but consider who really needs a corporate-issued device. Moreover, how do needs compare to your actual number of assets issued?  

Most companies find they have a bloat of devices.   

Consider scaling back your number of mobile and desk phones to avoid unnecessary expenditures in an age of video conferencing and preferences for softphones. In helping clients face the question, “Does every employee need a smartphone?” Tangoe’s mobile cost management consultants find that device repossessions can dial back spending by as much as 60%.  

Question 2: Is our BYOD approach really working? 

The bring-your-own-device (BYOD) debate remains a hot topic. On the one hand, companies can avoid costs decreasing total cost of ownership (TCO), but are the risks and potential costs of security and compliance worth it? Data leakage, device management challenges, malicious apps, and device infection are all critical to consider. 

These reasons are enough for many companies to reevaluate their BYOD approaches. Studies show the long-term savings of BYOD aren’t worth the risks of security and compliance. Companies are increasingly regretting their move to BYOD and often reverse course, wasting millions in time and money through multiple transitions.   

Question 3: What about our 3- and 4-year-old contracts? 

A lot can change in a short amount of time, especially considering the last few years. From a corporate mobile device management standpoint, companies need to chase down their 3- and 4-year-old mobile phone contracts and get a firmer grasp on device habits and data service usage too. Contracts from 2020 and 2021 were built for business models that aren’t as relevant today.  

Negotiating these contracts opens new paths to serious savings – like for one client, a global leader in premium spirits, who identified $500k in annual savings thanks to contract negotiations lead by Tangoe’s expert negotiation artists.   

Mobile Device Management: Remember these Tips 

Remember to also keep an eye on changing pricing trends and work to understand nuances in new data plans available as well as their limitations.  

  • Consider unlimited data plans, for example. What seems like the best bang for your buck could be a money pit if you get roped into the wrong plan. (For the record, Tangoe recommends tiered or shared data plans for large enterprises with thousands of mobile users and lines, as they generally save more money than unlimited plans).  
  • 5G is lowering costs for mobility and IoT programs. 
  • Overall, mobile pricing trends are down but fees are up, so keeping an eye on the bills is critical. 
  • Carriers are moving away from 2-year subsidy models, spreading device costs over 3-year terms and offering credits against installment plans – but all of this can make cost evaluations and purchasing decisions confusing. 

Want to learn more? Check out Tangoe’s 2024 IT Trends and Savings Recommendations report.