By Craig Riegelhaupt, Contributor, CIO | FEB 2, 2018 9:00 AM PT
As the global economy continues to grow with no signs of a slowdown, companies continue to roll out innovation initiatives organically, engage in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity, undertake corporate restructurings and acquire new technologies at an unrelenting pace. A decade after the early adapters began using it, the cloud is the underlying IT infrastructure that organizations strive to master.
Everything, it seems, is moving to the cloud. Forrester predicts that more than 50 percent of global enterprises will rely on at least one public cloud platform to drive digital transformation this year.
But many organizations will find themselves swimming upstream as they look to adapt their legacy networks and systems to cloud infrastructure. Likewise, organizational expenses for telecom management connected to cloud infrastructure will add uncertainty to the budgeting process – and stress to the CIOs and CFOs charged with implementing cost-effective digital transformation.
Effective sourcing strategies, across traditional areas of spending such as telecom, entail not only a focus on quality and cost, but also flexibility to ensure that the telecoms and cloud infrastructure is fit for business demands, both now and in the future. Organizations need global expertise with local capabilities to ensure cost-effective contracts, as well as managed service providers with best in class intellectual property (IP), benchmark data and proven analytics.
Today, even the largest global corporations are turning to consulting and advisory service providers to help manage their IT and telecom strategies, implementation and expenses. Large enterprises spend a significant amount of their budgets on telecommunications services and closely related categories. To achieve present and future business requirements, quality and savings requirements must be met when securing service provider contracts.
Large and mid-size companies that are updating IT infrastructure need to know what their current baseline costs are and take an inventory of their current services. In addition, monitoring changes during service migration and ensuring strong financial limits are in place during any transformation are key to giving transformation projects the best opportunity for success.
Enterprises also need customized solutions to overcome challenges such as a lack inventory visibility, an unstructured approach to spending management and immature usage governance policies. Providing customized solutions and assistance with even the most complex attribute of an advisory services team.
Organizations considering advisory services need to focus on three critical aspects:
Sourcing: Companies need to meet quality and savings requirements when securing service provider contracts. To ensure the successful negotiation of service provider contracts, the sourcing solution should provide access to world-class IP and benchmark data, proven analytics, global capabilities and local resources.
Transformation: As companies work to deploy business innovation initiatives and migrate data centers and applications to the cloud, they often find their current network infrastructure lacks the capability to handle these processes. To evaluate and support the implementation of transformation projects, the service provider should offer a global methodology for data gathering, inventory and baselining with expertise in carrier offerings, technologies and best practices.
Consulting: Ensuring the success of expense management strategies requires regular assessments to identify potential gaps and review for possible expansion to include new expenses. A trusted partner will assess expense management strategies, develop long-term solutions, integrate additional expense management categories, advise on best practices and support implementation initiatives.
An effective advisory services team will use its access to customer data to work independently, freeing up client time to focus on other value add activities. This approach has produced cost savings of 20 to 25 percent in a variety of organizations and industries in the past few years.
Beyond cost savings, a truly effective advisory services team will assist in identifying further opportunities for organizations to expand the scope of expense management solutions and deliver stronger return on investment (ROI). Too often, low visibility into market trends, offerings, appropriate service rates and best practices prevent enterprises from reaping the benefits of reduced expenses, optimized operating costs and flexible network services. To ensure the success of enterprise sourcing, network transformation and expense management strategies on a global basis, you need readily accessible insights, benchmarks, global methodologies and implementation support.
The bottom line: strong ROI, demonstrable cost savings and a firm grasp on digital transformation make for an excellent storybook – whether a company is buying, selling, divesting, restructuring or marketing.
Article appeared on CIO.com here.