As many as 2,700 consultants are available to advise Verizon Business customers as part of the carrier’s new professional services offering, it announced in late May.
The consultants specialize in Security Services, IT Services, Network Integration and Engineering, IP Communications and Contact Center Services. Verizon Business plans to offer at least 50 professional-service capabilities in more than 30 countries worldwide.
Your account manager would work with the consulting teams to engage them for projects or long-term outsourcing, Verizon explains.
The Security Services capabilities include threat and vulnerability assessments, identity and access management, governance and compliance, Verizon Business says.
IT Services handle consolidation of data centers, disaster recovery backup and restoration, e-commerce assessment and design, database design and replication, and data center relocation and migration.
Network Integration and Engineering services deliver the building, management and maintenance of wired and wireless local and wide area networks. This branch also provides network operations center design, new technology evaluation, network integration of hardware and software, lifecycle management, project management and network engineering staff augmentation.
IP Communications services help enterprises transition to IP telephony. Verizon Business offers convergence strategy workshop and planning services, business/financial impact analysis, convergence readiness assessments, convergence architecture and design and migration strategy development.
Contact Center Solutions consultants specialize in system integration, hardware/software implementation and custom software development. This program offers contact center architecture, design and implementation; infrastructure consulting; speech recognition; Web development; workforce management; custom reporting and quality monitoring. (
Verizon Wireless is attempting to reach an agreement with consumer groups and regulators to reduce early termination fees, the Associated Press reported May 21.
Wireless carriers have proposed giving customers 30 days after they sign cell phone contracts or 10 days after they receive their first bills to cancel their services without penalty, the AP says.
The proposal reportedly would prohibit a wireless carrier from imposing a termination fee on customers who change terms in the middle of a contract or end one contract period and begin another.
The plan also would cap the fees – which traditionally start around $175 – and reduce them month after month so it costs less to leave a contract you’ve held for a long time.
Verizon Wireless began prorating early termination fees in late 2006, lessening them by $5 per month over the length of the contract. But Verizon Wireless’ early termination fees never dip below $60.
AT&T began prorating early termination fees May 25, the AP reports.
The compromise would shift oversight of the fees to the FCC from state regulators, essentially letting carriers off the hook in class-action lawsuits brought on by early termination fees, the AP reports.
FCC Chairman Kevin Martin reportedly said he is in favor of federal regulation of early termination fees, even if it affects the class-action lawsuits.
Wireless carriers say the fees are necessary to recoup subsidies provided for handsets that subscribers get with service plans.
But the fees have gotten attention because there are so many complaints from consumers and even some lawmakers in Congress. (
Telecom Spend Rising in Health Care Institutions
June 5, 2008 (Vol. 29, No. 12)
Attention telecom managers in the health care industry: You’re not alone if your telecom spend is soaring.
Hospitals, physicians, pharmaceutical companies and insurance providers will spend $55 billion on telecom services during the next five years, according to a 129-page report published in May by Boonton, N.J.-based Insight Research Corporation.
Telecom spending by enterprises in the health care sector is expected to grow 8.4% every year for each of the next five years, increasing from $7.5 billion in 2008 to $11.3 billion in 2013, the report predicts.
The money is expected to go toward more bandwidth, packet services, and health care applications like video monitoring, electronic health records and telemedicine, concludes Insight Research President Robert Rosenberg, in a press release issued by the firm. (
FEMA to Manage U.S. Emergency Mobile Alerts
June 5, 2008 (Vol. 29, No. 12)
In April, the FCC approved a mobile alert program to provide text message alerts to cell phones during disasters, but was on the lookout for an agency to collect and transmit alerts to wireless carriers [VR 4/24/08].
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has taken on the challenge, the FCC announced May 30.
Now that the message-aggregating agency has been announced, the FCC can move on to the next step in building the program: Wireless carriers that elect to participate will have 10 months to comply with the FCC’s rules for sending emergency alerts.
The FCC anticipates sending three types of alerts to cell phone subscribers that opt in: Presidential Alerts in the event of national emergencies, Imminent Threat Alerts and Child Abduction/AMBER Alerts. (