Halloween is just around the corner. Want to hear something scary?
If your organization has policies in place that allow former employees to keep their mobile phone after they leave, zombie phones could be attacking your mobile budget – and you have no idea it’s happening!
“Zombie phone” is a term coined by Amtel, a MDM vendor who, while analyzing companies’ mobile networks, discovered that a certain percentage of phones were still alive, when the company thought they had been disconnected.
Many organizations now implement a BYOD (bring-your-own-device) policy and as employee-owned devices replace company-owned mobile devices; an estimated 10% of the time, the carrier continues to bill the company each month, due to lack of monitoring from the customer and oversight on behalf of the carrier.
Amtel says that zombie phones are almost certainly draining your mobile budget for if your organization has between 500-50,000 mobile lines.
Just what kind of budget drain are we talking? While auditing a large multinational biotech company, Amtel discovered 2% consisted of zombie phones that were costing the company $70,000 annually.
Two horrifying scenarios cause a zombie phone to rise again:
1) Former Employee Phone Transfer
In the world of BYOD, former employees are often asked to take over liability and payment of their corporate-issued phone, once the bill is transferred to their name. This transfer is a tedious process, requiring a lot of back and forth phone calls with the carrier.
10% of the time, the transfer does not go through. As a result, the company continues to pay for the phone month after month, while the former employee continues to use the phone – free of charge.
What’s worse, if the employee was receiving stipends from the company as an incentive to get some measure of control over the device, the company unknowingly pays double for the phone each month.
2) “Buried Alive” Phones
Here’s another common scenario. When an employee leaves a company, they turn in their company-issued mobile device. The company then notifies the carrier that they want to terminate the contract for that particular phone. The phone is stored away, never to be seen again. What the company does not realize is that 10% of the time, the phone plan is NOT terminated, remains unnoticed by IT and billing and the zombie phone continues to drain the company’s mobile budget month after month.
How to Zombie Proof Your Mobile Budget
The only foolproof way to prevent zombie phones from slipping between the cracks is with a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution. This service makes the process of checking each device to ensure it is in fact dead, completely automatic. MDM and monitoring software can help you seek out zombie phones and eliminate them.
If your organization has over 500 mobile devices, a mobile device management solution can pay for itself like it did for the bio-tech firm who saved $70,000/year. Learn more about mobile device management or contact us to organize, manage and secure the mobile devices within your organization.
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