Many companies are wondering how AT&T's purchase of T-Mobile will affect the carrier marketplace as well as their telecom contracts and spending. Experts continue to weigh in on this topic, including the team here at NPI in a recent interview with FoxBusiness.com as well as Kevin DiLallo and Ben Fox in an article at NoJitter.com. Companies are waiting to see what happens as the merger is reviewed. In the meantime, here are a few things they can do now to protect their telecom spending:
Lock in those rates...now. T-Mobile customers should pressure their account teams to allow them to lock in prices. As of today, T-Mobile is still the most price-competitive carrier (despite a smaller enterprise customer base than the other carriers). Until a merger is approved, they are still competing against AT&T -- which can be advantageous for those enterprises that act now.
Go long-term. Long-term contracts can be scary in the enterprise, especially in a time of business and market volatility. Shorter contract durations not only keep carriers competitive, but force companies to revisit how well they're being served. However, this is one instance where a long-term contract may be the better option.
Protect yourself post-merger. Include a contract clause that will allow you to keep these rates post-merger.
Be ready for major changes after your T-Mobile contract expires. Whether it's one or four years down the road, T-Mobile enterprise customers should be prepared for a jump in telecom expenditures. Not only will new rates default to higher pricing, new charges, like data usage caps, will drive costs up.
-- Jeff Muscarella, EVP of IT, NPI