How to manage telco vendor performance

Vendor management

Are our telco vendors performing as they should be? How do I make informed choices on carrier selection, routes and resources? And how can I hold my vendors to account if they aren’t delivering the required service?

These are all questions any exec with oversight of a global telecoms network may ask at any given time. However, there is a way to better manage telco vendor performance,  enhance visibility, monitor it more effectively, and improve customer experience.  

Managing multiple telco vendors

Large multinationals and unified communication providers, tend to have complex telecommunications networks. With advances in technology, organizations have more control over call routing. They can direct traffic to alternative locations based on time of day and available skill sets. This has a positive impact on both customer experience and business continuity, ensuring round-the-clock availability. 

For organizations with global telecoms requirements, managing this complex network of multiple vendors in different geographies can be a challenging task. Vendor management and quality control becomes an increasingly complicated task, where execs often feel they have multiple blindspots. 

To get to the root cause of any issues or outages in a complex network, ensure adherence to Service Level Agreements (SLAs), and monitor Quality of Service (QoS) for multiple vendors requires a proactive approach to monitoring.  

One vendor to rule them all?

The desire to simplify processes, billing and relationships is often strong in an executive team. Having just one carrier’s invoice to interrogate and one point of contact for negotiating changes or resolving issues is attractive. A personal relationship between members of exec teams can sometimes be the driving factor for loyalty to one vendor.

A streamlined approach may appeal as a strategy for some. A proactive approach to vendor management may arguably be even more crucial in this scenario. A single vendor may be less driven to compete on quality where they feel there are no other vendors to compete with. Furthermore, while one point of contact may seem straightforward, carriers can have complex partnership arrangements that often leave them with their own blindspots.

Manage telco vendor performance with Spearline

Spearline works with 80% of the global enterprises in the Gartner UCaaS Magic Quadrant to proactively monitor and manage their global telecoms networks. With 230 global fixed-line and mobile carriers in our testing network, Spearline provides real-time intelligence to organizations looking to manage their telco vendors’ performance.

Reporting and analytics

Spearline Voice Assure In-country  is built on the premise that proactive management is always better than reactive management. This is never more true when it comes to telco vendor management. A management team that is caught of guard by an influx of customer complaints, is one that is constantly fire-fighting, rather than one that is focused on ensuring their organization’s success.

In-country testing allows for real-time alerts of failures or quality of service issues. This ensures faults are picked up quickly. Independent, verified reporting means organizations are not caught ‘flat-footed’ by issues. Instead, they are proactively approaching their vendors, armed with all the information needed to resolve the issue.

At a ‘big picture’ level, this also allows execs to have a high-level overview of how their telecoms network is performing globally. It highlights where there are problems and pain-points, and where extra resources may be required. Where improvements are needed, these can be targeted and based on real-world data. Moreover, if decisions need to be made on carrier and route selection, this is done with confidence on actual, rather than stated performance.

Informed root-cause analysis

For anyone responsible for a global telecoms network, reducing the mean time to restore service (MTRS) or mean time to resolution (MTTR) is a key imperative. Resolving a ticket with a vendor where full details of a fault are unclear can be a lengthy process. Not to mention accounting for how long it may have taken for the fault to be recognised in the first place.

Spearline reporting provides: 

  • Full call detail records (CDRs) for every fault detected. Organizations can go directly to their providers with the relevant log details such as start time, down to the millisecond. This in turn allows issues to be resolved more quickly and more successfully, often before a customer has been affected.
  • Immediate narrowing of scope of fault investigation. Spearline confirms if an issue was at country level as opposed to at contact center level. We also confirm if other carriers have the same issues. This immediately allows for a more focused investigation, again reducing the time to resolve an issue. 

Benchmarking and ranking to manage vendor performance

Spearline’s testing from over 70 countries provides millions of data points that indicate the state of the global telecoms networks at any given time. Additionally, objective voice quality tests give an independently-verified measure of the quality of service carriers provide.

An example of how Spearline reporting and analytics provides an at-a-glance view of where and when telecoms performance is operating below the benchmark for given geographies.

Benchmarking and ranking to manage telco vendor performance
An example of a benchmarking and ranking report of carriers to manage telco vendor performance

Spearline provides a benchmark on how their vendor is performing, as compared to others in the same region and service type.

The value for executives is to quickly and objectively measure if vendors are delivering a quality service, against objective benchmark indicators and their own historical data.

A ranking calculated with objective quality scores from Spearline testing to support the management of telco vendor performance

Weighting: Tickets x3, Quality x3, Helpdesk x2, Provisioning x2, Billing x1. A ranking of ‘1’ indicates excellent performance, with a ranking of ‘10’ bottom of the group.

Organizations that work with multiple carriers rely on Spearline’s intelligence to:

  • develop their own bespoke ranking of their vendors.
  • proactively manage service delivery.
  • provide a vital talking point for contract re-negotiations.

The above example shows a ranking calculated with objective quality scores from Spearline testing, along with subjective scores on other important factors like helpdesk support. Extra weighting is often applied to the most important factors, with Spearline’s quality score usually featuring as a primary factor. 

Find out more

Read more in our whitepaper on Assessing vendor performance 

About Spearline 

Spearline allows organizations to provide uninterrupted services to customers around the world. The Spearline platform tests inbound telecommunications services, as well as dial-out. 

If you are new to Spearline and would like to find out more about how you can benefit, we would love to speak with you. Please send us a brief  message, and we will be in contact with you shortly.

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