The recent news about AT&T users experiencing throttling could be the beginning of where things are headed for mobile data costs. BGR ran a follow up article, AT&T on data throttling: Blame yourselves soon after which characterizes AT&T’s stance and provides an insight as to just how bad things are. In essence, the carriers, or in this case AT&T, don’t really have an answer for what will happen when there’s more data demand than supply. And make no mistake about it, we will get there sooner than you might think.
This post is primarily for leadership positions. So much focus goes into designing the current solution, that few think about what will happen at the end of the term. It is common that a “ramp up” provision is in place for bringing services in, but not so common that there is a “ramp down” provision for when services are being moved off. Obviously it is not in your provider’s best interest to make it easy for you to move away from their solutions. One of my clients recently commented on this regarding cloud based services – how easy it is to move services to the cloud but not so easy to move them back. I’ll have a separate post in the near future on pitfalls to avoid with cloud based services, but regardless of the type of services or solution you are buying, there is a possibility that in a few years there will be a better solution available.
This is one where your IT and Sourcing people need to work together. It will be important for your IT people to try to anticipate what it will take to “deconstruct” the solution and implement an alternative. Your sourcing people will need to make sure that this is factored in. The danger is that no one gets a pat on the back for avoiding a problem 3-5 years in the future. And 3-5 years in the future most of the people working on the current solution will be gone. Leadership can make sure that this has been factored in, and most importantly documented.
Despite popular opinion, a RFP response is not a contract. Sometimes the pressure to respond quickly and with the best possible solution creates administrative errors. It is always best to examine the details of their response, item by item, and check the calculations to ensure that proposals are being evaluated in the most accurate way possible. This holds true even if the error appears to be in your favor. You may proceed through the RFP evaluation, only to be derailed when the contract is written up and the error is caught, or the contract is executed and the vendor is unable to deliver the agreed to services. A vendor breach of contract is not really beneficial to your business, especially if it is service affecting.
When you begin looking at a new deal, one of the areas of concern is usually the revenue or line commitment. You know that your business is changing all the time. Are you going to leave money on the table and sign a deal with a lower commitment and lose out on savings or are you going to lock into a higher commitment and risk a shortfall that you will need to pay against?
Most people are petrified of committing to a high number and then paying the “penalty fees”. Are they really penalties at all? That is a discussion for another day. Today though, we are going to look at a technique that can be used to maximize your savings while limiting your exposure.
Either I was late on this or it’s happening way too soon. Verizon is reacting to the increased demands put on their wireless data network. As always, BGR provides the scoop: Verizon CTO hints at tiered data plans. Read the BGR analysis and then hit the jump to see more from the Broadband/DSL Reports blog. Read more…