The subject of telecom brokers came up, and I wanted to delve a little bit more into it.
Telecom brokers are supposed to be able to find the right options for your telecom needs and have contacts that can help in case of escalation needs.
While a telecom broker can lead you in the right direction, at the end of the day you should always do your own homework as well and verify any solution that is being sent to you.
The following link by John Hagan , President of TeleData Select summarized all the reasons that a telecom broker could be useful. I do think some telecom brokers may have some sales quota’s of their own. But since brokers are reputation based I don’t think that they would want to jeopardize their position for a few sales. The one thing that I do hear is that their negotiation for pricing is optimal since they are doing this day in day out.
9 Top Reasons To Use Telecom Brokers.
Multiple Carrier Options: Would you like to deal with one person for all you communication services, rather than dealing with a sales person from each company? The broker will have contacts with many carriers and vendors which means he or she can quickly acquire quotes and information without you requesting it yourself. A big time saver, especially when evaluating multiple locations and offers from vendors.
More Expertise: A typical telecommunications company will have over 50% sales turn over each year and end up hiring inexperienced sales people to fill positions. Many Telecom Brokers have had years of experience working at various telecom companies, they understand technology and are able to compare company A and company B.
Satisfaction: Telecom Brokers long term success is dependent on the ongoing satisfaction of their customers. Each month, Telecom Bookers get paid a small (residual) commission to manage the telecommunication service of their customers. This ensures that Telecom Brokers/Consultants continue to provide clients with exceptional customer service for years.
Transparency: Some telecom providers provide great pricing, but they take forever to install the services, others have poor billing and are unorganized. Good Telecom Brokers can explain the good and bad of each carrier and what to expect.
No Sales Quotas: Many telecom providers put their sales people under unrealistic sales quotas and end up with pushy unprofessional sales staff and high turnover. Good Telecom Brokers have a vested interest in a customer’s long term success, helping customers make informed educated decisions without the need of sales quotas.
Single Point of Contact: All too often after you purchase telecom services and need help with billing or service issues the sales person that sold you the service has left. You are now have known one to call for help and are left calling the companies 800 number which can frustrating and downright time consuming. A good Broker can help escalate, troubleshoot or get resolutions resolved much faster than dealing direct with a telecom provider
Consolidation: Many companies with multiple locations and difference providers get multiple bills and need help consolidating services. . Good Telecom Brokers understand “Telecom Aggregation” consolidating multiple services on one bill and providing a “one stop shopping” model that saves time and money.
Pricing and Support: In some cases Telecom Brokers offer better rates to their customers than going direct with the telecom company. In fact, many Telecom companies in an effort to reduce cost have fired their sales staffs and only work with “indirect” or Telecom Brokers.
While Cisco is the big boy on the block when it comes to networking gear, competitor Arista has some nice offerings that give one reason to look at a look at its products.
One interesting thing their devices have is “native support for VMware Virtualization” (1). With Vmware endorsing NSX for it’s vision of the software defined datacenter (SDDC), and a partner like Arista providing the physical components, it could make deploying software defined networking (SDN) much easier. In fact, Vmware and Arista have entered a “Strategic Relationship to Advance Adoption of Network Virtualization”. At the moment it’s a 4 year agreement ot work together, but as with any relationship, if it is fruitful it will continue to grow.
One of my concerns with NSX when it first came out was vendor support. At a VMUG conference 2 years ago when asked what steps and hardware vendor support there would be for network issues, the answer was they were working on it. In the meantime use wireshark. At that time, only bleeding edge cases would have likley gotten the most out of NSX. Today with strategic partnerships in place, it’s a different story.
At the moment it appears the targets for their combined solutions are large enterprise datacenters and cloud providers
but for smaller and midsized firms, gaining an understanding of what is available can always lead to a future edge competitively.
This topic needs further research by myself, and I am interested in learning more