Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Beware the small print on Telecoms Agreements

At Merlin, we’re in a position to see many telecoms contracts. While most are explicit and unambiguous to the client; some are using the trick, of a little tick in a box.

Below, is an extract from one of our favourite culprits. For clients with an existing installation, they rather sneakily achieve a long term contract or renewal by getting sales agents to tick one of these boxes below, and in the opinion of those who we are undertaking an audit for, without bringing it to your attention. We’re talking about a subtle tick - very easy to miss. However, their commission depends upon it, so they have a vested interest in being discreet in bringing this tick you your attention.

So if you see this on a document, ask why there is a need for a minimum term, as there’s no commercially justifiable reason for long-length contracts where you are an existing client or thinking of changing supplier, there is no additional cost associated to delivering the service.

Telecoms service providers have a wholesale rate and a retail rate and the difference keeps them in business. What the above tick in a box does is to create a value of their business should they wish to sell it, nothing at all to do with delivering value to the end user, so beware - this is all about supplier gain at the customer’s expense.

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