Headquartered in the UK but with offices and employees worldwide, Rolls-Royce is the world’s leading producers of aero engines for large civil aircraft and corporate jets. When it sought to transition from BlackBerry to iPhones at the end of 2014, the company also looked for support that would help it get a handle on the increasing cost of mobility and data consumption.
It was a particular concern at the time because the new phones would consume more data than the old ones did. Also, the company’s agility philosophy extended to allowing employees to work from home or remotely, which translated into increasing data usage on the company-issued mobile devices.
While their mobile carriers did offer optimization reports, they did not provide the requisite analytics for supporting an efficient cost strategy. That’s when they determined that they “needed a carrier-agnostic party to be that support” for their company, Andee Buergelin, Rolls-Royce’s IT vendor manager, said.
They also wanted to have a solution in place that resolved problems more quickly. Under their existing system, users in the U.S. and Canada often had a delay of up to 48 hours in resolving problems. That “became a pinch point and source of pain,” Buergelin observed, especially when they were travelling.
The mobile solution
Rolls-Royce found the solution in a centralized platform for their mobility system from MOBI. It provides monthly audit suggestions for “changes to plants to reduce costs and optimize our contracts,” she said.
“One of the things that attracted us to MONI was that they wrote their own code,” Buergelin said. She appreciated that they “didn’t try to take off-the-shelf solution.”
Another plus for signing on with MOBI was that, unlike some other companies that demand multi-year contracts with “exit penalties,” she has the option to terminate the service at any time with 30 days notice. That kind of flexibility and implied guarantee made her feel confident about her choice.
She has had no cause to put in the notice because “MOBI has certainly lived up to and even beat most of the commitments it made to us.”
For example, they committed to “month over months savings of 12 percent.” Buergelin recalls, “I was very skeptical of that. It just didn’t seem possible,” she said. But as it turned out, it not only “hit that target” but has “gone above and beyond.” In fact, she estimates that they now save 45 percent on their carrier bills.
Another advantage of MOBI is that it combines the ability of a large company with the responsiveness of a small one. That means that when they come to them with a problem or an idea, MOBI takes it and comes up with an approach to address the issue.
A case in point was working out the most economical way to have roaming features put on the phones of employees when they were travelling. To avoid the problem of employees discovering a lack of service once they arrived abroad because they had forgotten to activate it in advance, Rolls-Royce had been keeping them on plans that included unlimited data and roaming packages.
That was expensive, and Buergelin wanted to see if MOBI could come up with a more cost-effective solution that automated the activation process. As Rolls-Royce books all the travel through the same American Express travel agent, MOBI obtained the travel itineraries from the agent to see the names of the people travelling and the number of lines they would need access for on the trip to activate it for them only for the duration of the trip. The rest of the time, their lines are back on the more limited and economical rates.
That makes life easier for the end user, as does the portal and help desk support that MOBI provides for about 3500 lines in the U.S. and Canada. Users can choose to log in for self-service or call in 24/7 for support on issues that are resolved within minutes rather than days. There’s no cap on help desk calls as there are on some plans.
As important as the improvements to the budget and the end-user satisfaction are, they’re not the whole story. As someone in charge of mobility, for Buergelin, having “confidence in our data” is also essential. She didn’t have that level of confidence when they had to rely on the carriers for the data, which was not as carefully verified, often including people who had left the company months before.
Now she finds that she “can trust what we see, trust that lines are being billed and allocated, costs are allocated 100 percent as they should be.” She has “complete confidence in what we’re seeing in our mobility, which we did not have before at all.”