IT budgets are often the most strained budgets in any business, so it should come as little shock to anyone that telecom billing errors are something no business can really afford. Nevertheless, telecom bills for data and voice are frequently full of errors that can go undiscovered for several years. There are three mistakes in particular that are seen most frequently.
1. Incorrect rates
It’s no mystery why billing errors always favor the telecom provider instead of the client; this isn’t caused by malice, but rather by negligence. Providers watch very carefully for any billing errors that reduce their profitability, but they don’t watch your bottom line, so those kinds of errors don’t get noticed. These errors usually happen for one of two reasons:
- The lower rates you were supposed to get upon renewing your contract don’t get applied to your invoice. This doesn’t mean your provider is cheating you, however. Most of these discounts take an invoice cycle or two before they appear on your invoice. After your renewal, the second or third invoice should reflect your discount/lower rates.
- Sometimes newly installed services don’t receive the quoted discounts or rates. This is often simply a case of an order-entry error on the provider’s part. Carefully review the rates of your new services to make sure they’re accurate and compare the starting billing date with the actual date the services were installed to make sure they line up.
2. Still being billed for disconnected services
It should be a simple process to cancel a service with your provider. You call them up, tell them you want to discontinue a service, they give you a cancel-order number and you get a stop-billing date. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always mean it’s going to get done. According to studies, at least 25 percent of canceled orders continue to bill the client long after the stop-billing date. This can go unnoticed for months, even years, if it’s ever noticed at all. Review your invoice carefully after the stop-billing date to confirm that you are no longer being billed for a service you cancelled.
3. Charges for services that don’t belong to you
Cramming isn’t just something college students do the night before an exam. Telecom providers do it too, only instead of knowledge they’re cramming services into your billing account, usually without your knowledge or approval. Small business internet and dial tone accounts are the most common targets for cramming and, because these services usually add up to less than $50 a month, they tend to go unnoticed. Sometimes these invoices even contain charges for services that don’t even belong to your company.
Don’t let this happen to you! Rainbow Information Systems can help cut down on your business’ telecom expenses and expose these kinds of billing errors. Let us put our telecommunications expertise to work for you! Contact us online or call (888) 357-2835 today!