One of the most experienced leaders in managing wireless expenses for business clients offers insights on controlling wireless costs in a competitive market.

Mindy Prowler, owner of Cellular Billing Consultants, believes that despite the well-publicized cellular pricing wars between carriers, switching providers is often the last step a business should take. That’s because it can involve purchasing expensive new equipment, paying termination fees and accepting inferior wireless coverage. Instead, the key to controlling costs is in reviewing the lines that are currently being used rather than looking to change carriers.

“For example, we recently saved a client over $8,000.00 a month after reviewing their bills. When you tell someone you just put more than $90,000.00 a year back into their bottom line without sacrificing service they’re pretty happy.” Ms. Prowler said.

Carriers aren’t in the business of saving their customers money and their bills aren’t really transparent. For instance, Ms. Prowler points out while carriers often bill in gigabytes they report usage in megabyte and kilobytes, adding to the confusion. It can be difficult for someone working in-house to know where to look when staring at pages and pages of cellular charges.

To review an account, Ms. Prowler recommends starting by looking at any overages. And, surprisingly, if there aren’t overages this also could be cause for alarm. Find out which calling plans are in place and are they the right ones for the usage. If associates travel internationally make sure to have the correct roaming plan(s). Also, be aware that if blocks are not in place it’s the company that will be responsible for third party downloads.

Having done all that, though, the most time consuming and frustrating task can be getting the carrier to make the adjustments. “You can literally spend hours with a carrier pointing out what has to be done and in the end none of that matters if they fail to implement the changes into their system.” Says Ms. Prowler.

Retaining an outside cellular billing consultant to analyze cellular bills often pays for itself many times over. They’re familiar with the industry, have experience reviewing multiple lines and know how to follow through so that all the necessary changes are made. Equally important is to be sure that your consultant’s first priority is with your business and not the carriers.

We prefer to personally get to know our clients,” Ms. Prowler says, “and to share with them, for a short time, in their savings as reflected in their bills. That works as an incentive to perform the most comprehensive audit we can. For us and for our client’s it’s a win-win. After years of analyzing thousands of bills I’m pretty confident we can save our clients money. And if we can’t, well, it doesn’t cost them anything.”

Cellular Billing Consultants has been analyzing wireless bills since 1998. They are frequent on air contributors to Los Angeles radio station KNX’s ‘Money 101’ advising their listeners on cellular matters and have been featured in Bloomberg Businessweek. They can be reached by phone at 805.492.4925 or visit their website at cellularbillingconsultants.com.