Telecom Experts Reflect on Changes in the Telecom Industry
Chad Parnis founded 4TelecomHelp in Philadelphia in 1999, in, as one long-time client put it, a “creaky” office. A lot has changed since then with 4TelecomHelp now having stylish, modern offices in the tech hubs on both coasts: Philadelphia and San Diego.
“Since launching 4TelecomHelp in 1999, I have been focused on bringing together the very best service and technology to help our clients effectively manage and optimize their fixed and mobile telecom environments,” Chad explains. “For nearly two decades, we’ve brought together ‘best of breed’ technology for Telecom Expense Management (TEM) and Wireless Expense Management (WEM) for our clients – Fortune 500 companies, universities, and government agencies.”
When Chad founded “4T” as they are often referred to, companies were finding that telecom was a challenging subset of IT and that sorting through piles of paper bills each month was a hassle. This was well before “digital transformation” took hold and a large company would receive literally hundreds of pages of paper bills each month in the USPS mail. IT and Accounting staff didn’t have time to look through each one every single month. What became apparent was that companies were losing a ton of money in mistakes, incorrect billing, misapplied payments and late fees. Finding those errors and working with the carriers to correct them was something that companies wanted help with. And it meant big money: errors could add up to thousands of dollars.
As more companies started to enter the nascent space, the industry name was born: “Telecom Expense Management”. As demand grew, Chad knew that he wanted to expand. Chad and Jill met when Jill was working for a telecom carrier and bidding on a project he was conducting for WAWA markets. They started doing more work together over the next year and then Jill officially joined the 4T leadership team in January 2001, bringing over a decade of telecom experience to 4T. 4T established a formal west coast presence with the opening of the Carlsbad office in 2008.
In the early days, Telecom Expense Management or “TEM” was only focused on wired line or fixed telecom. In 1999, the first BlackBerry email pager was released. The number of mobile subscribers started to grow from 145M in 1996 to 1,405M in 2003. Soon road warriors in sales were demanding mobile devices so they could stay connected on the road. As mobile devices became more widely used in business, the need to many those invoices led to more IT headaches. Wireless Expense Management or “WEM” was added as a new service by company like 4T.
Once Apple launched the iPhone in 2007, IT was unable to stop the flood of new consumer devices that were bring brought into the office. With this consumerization of IT, WEM businesses evolved their services to help provision, secure, and manage the invoices for these new devices.
The pace of telecom change is increasing ever more rapidly today and 4T continues to grow its capabilities to meet customer needs. One way that 4T helps clients keep up is through optimizing their environments and negotiating contracts as they move to new telecom infrastructure technology. As the industry has evolved and consolidated over the past few years, 4T has evolved, too, while staying independent.
“In 2017, we opened a new chapter for 4TelecomHelp with a state-of-the-art integrated telecom management platform in the cloud, 4T-Titan.” This new platform has enabled them to scale and provide deeper reporting and responsiveness to customers.
“The drive to be the best enables 4TelecomHelp to exceed all of our clients’ expectations. We pride ourselves on cultivating long term relationships with all of our clients.”