Zombie Bills and Saving Money

We partner with clients to get them the best services for reasonable prices.  In this case we worked with the client to audit their technology bills and found zombie bills bleeding them of thousands of dollars a month.  In the time of COVID-19, when money was tight, we were thrilled to help.

While Internetek isn't a dedicated auditing firm like tax and accounting groups, we do occasionally get asked to assist a client in auditing their technology expenses. Really, we like to be helpful so if we're not asked, we'll offer. Our over a decade of experience working with cellular, cable, internet, hardware, and software vendors has given us the knowledge to identify when a client isn't getting the best deal. Sometimes they're being overcharged, sometimes they have services they don't need, or sometimes they just don't understand what they're looking at. For example, a Verizon cellular bill for one of our clients is in excess of four-hundred pages.

This client asked us to look at their cellular expenses for savings. They had approximately two-hundred cellphones with a monthly bill of a staggering $35,000 a month! After two months of analyzing their processes, how their data was used, how their employees used their phones, their inventory process, and many other metrics, we were able to bring their bill down to $8,000 a month. If you do the math their cost per line became $40 per month. That's better than most home cellular bills.

The biggest savings we found was that they had no control over their data overages and international usage. We partnered the client with Mobile Solutions (Now BrightFin) that monitors their usage in real time and adjusts the client's cellular plans to handle any overages. They even backdated plans before the overage to prevent the expense from ever happening. Of course, we didn't step out after this was completed. We periodically check the account to make sure they're still getting the best service possible and support their cellular fleet.

We then contacted other carriers to obtain competitive quotes and presented them back to their original carrier. The message was clear, "Give us reasonable rates or we leave." Through our negotiation on behalf of the client, the carrier agreed to switch the client to unlimited plans for all lines for $40 per month with at a permanent discount. If the client had decided to leave the carrier we would have been right there to help them through the process.

While all of this was happening we asked if we could check out the other telecommunications expenses. We like to be thorough. Over the course a month we worked with the client's accounting department to pull every telecommunication bill, analyze them, and make sure they were actually in use. We often find that accounts get forgotten but are still being paid. We like to call these "Zombie Bills". They're not really alive or dead, but still being paid. In this case we found approximately $5000 a month of accounts that were no longer in use, could be adjusted, or some other savings could be found.

The total engagement with the client was four months. When we were done the client saved $32,000 a month or $384,000 a year! That savings didn't just go away either. That's money they continue saving and we'll continue monitoring to make sure they get more savings. Certainly sounds worth it to us.