Businesses urged to take tender approach to telecoms


12 Oct 2006

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Irish businesses could save significantly on their mobile call charges because network operators can be more flexible on price than many people realise, a telecoms provider has said.

Dublin-based MinuteBuyer, which offers a telecoms brokerage service, said that businesses should call for competitive tenders from mobile telecoms networks in order to save money — potentially hundreds of thousands of euro per year in charges.

MinuteBuyer CEO Brendan Moran said: “The mobile networks are often willing to bend on price substantially in order to win exclusive corporate contracts. Depending on the size of the eventual contract, the savings can be significant.”

The company has launched an independent telecoms tender service, which guides businesses through this process. Customers such as the Musgrave Group, Anglo Irish Bank and Acorn Life achieve savings on their mobile phone bills of up to 40pc per cent using this process, MinuteBuyer claimed.

“Small and medium-sized businesses can also benefit,” Moran added. “Irish companies put other business contracts out for tender regularly but few capitalise on the fact that the mobile providers are prepared to fight to win their telecoms business.”

MinuteBuyer’s service involves a five-stage process from first agreeing the client company’s mobile needs to issuing requests for information from potential suppliers through to evaluating responses and choosing a preferred operator. The company claimed that this can save companies time and resources that would be involved in handling the tendering process by themselves.

According to Moran, the evaluation stage can often be complicated. “It is often difficult to prepare like-for-like rates between mobile networks because all operators have different schemes, price structures, options and presentation of costs,” he pointed out.

Shaun Hayden, COO of MinuteBuyer, said that businesses tend not to shop around as much as they could. “Many Irish companies might see a promotion and then think about asking for a better deal — but usually only from their current network. Going out to all networks through a structured tender process can generate much more substantial savings.”

By Gordon Smith