Call Accounting Featured Article

Call Accounting an Important Complement to TEM Solutions

May 04, 2017

Call accounting is becoming an integral part of telecom expense management (TEM), particularly as companies move toward VoIP for their communications services. Call accounting offers a valuable complement to TEM solutions, due to its flexibility, scalability and ease of integration with traditional, packet-based and wireless services.

AOTMP, a company that specializes in TEM best practices, got to discuss the importance of call accounting within the TEM space recently with Charles Coakley, VP of sales and marketing at TeleManagement Technologies (News - Alert). The company focuses on helping its customers save money through TEM and call accounting. Coakley said that call accounting is especially important for organizations using VoIP as they can benefit from near real-time call detail recording (CDR) collection and reporting, no matter where they are geographically located.

And call accounting offers greater visibility with VoIP services, pulling out abandoned calls based on location and using built-in intelligence to determine where high abandon rates are coming from and what is being impacted. Businesses can then allocate additional resources to mitigate problems and ensure specific areas are properly staffed. Coakley said his company is observing increased integration between CDR and TEM, with CDR providing additional value to TEM solutions.

“Now we’re seeing more focus on CDR and how it adds value to TEM,” said Coakley. “People want more granularity; more detailed accounting of individual usage. Clients tell us, ‘TEM gives us summary data, but if we also have the call detail, we can allocate costs back to employees and departments.’ That’s why you need call accounting.”

An additional benefit of call accounting is that it offers a way to identify fraud and misuse, like employees chatting on social media during work hours. Knowing there is a solution in place to capture that type of activity is usually a good incentive for employees to stay on task during work time.  And by integrating call accounting with TEM, businesses can track activity at a granular level for both wireless and wireline services, an extremely useful feature.

Businesses can also glean value from the ability to manage both carrier call records along with PBX (News - Alert) call records. This offers valuable peace of mind that internal calling activity matches what carriers are billing for and that call records match actual usage. And the same principles may also be applied to wireless and mobility management, enabling businesses to map their wireless traffic records and drill down for granular reporting. This is a major benefit in today’s remote work environments, in which many workers are using their own phones for businesses purposes. Call accounting offers a way to verify work calls are being made as reported.

All types of vertical markets can benefit from call accounting when used to complement a TEM solution, according to Coakley. “Given today’s litigious business environment we really need to know what calls are being made, by whom, when and where,” he said. “If you don’t have the backup data or if it’s inaccurate, you’re stuck. Having that security is paramount. And we hear plenty of war stories. In some cases employees are secretly making calls to competitors. In other cases, employees are running their own side businesses on company time. You need to determine who is doing this and that’s where call accounting excels.”

Call accounting and TEM solutions each offer a host of benefits to companies in a variety of vertical markets. When used separately, each type of solution is an important part of accounting and business processes. When used together, call accounting and TEM offer security and peace of mind by providing granular details about calling across wireline and mobile environments.

Edited by Alicia Young