Section 124S of the Communications Act 2003 (‘the Act’), which comes into force on 1 October 2018, requires providers of mobile phone services to give customers the ability to limit the cost of their bill and to notify customers when that limit is likely to be reached. The legislation requires that a bill limit is offered to all customers taking out a mobile phone contract on or after 1 October 2018 and to all customers renewing any existing contract from this date. These customers must also be permitted to specify, amend or remove a bill limit on reasonable notice at any time. A customer’s limit can only be exceeded with their express consent. If a service continues to be provided without this consent, the provider is prohibited from billing the customer for any charges for the service after the limit is reached.
This legislation brings multiple issues throughout the channel and resellers need to ensure their billing platform is equipped to cope with these complexities or they could find their business non-compliant and having to absorb extensive revenue and margin loss.
For example; should the end users bill exceed the pre-agreed amount the provider will be prohibited from billing the customer for the excess and will be responsible for any charges and services used themselves.
By now you should have;
- Read and understood the new regulations
- Began to think about how your processes will need to work around the regulations
- Understand impacts on revenue and margin
The biggest risks to resellers are billing platforms that aren’t able to;
- Auto-rate CDR data including roamed traffic (as near to real time as possible)
- Directly integrate with mobile networks
- Provide extensive reporting across complex data including revenue loss
- Enable the user to set and amend mobile bill limits through the billing platform
- Notify end users of their usage
- Bar end users
If you are an Aurora customer you are already in a very good position to deal with the new legislation as we are building on our existing intelligent billing technology to ensure our customers’ risk is minimised.
Affinity Billing Enterprise has extensive provisioning, alerting, barring and monitoring capabilities to maximise resellers’ ability to manage their estate and billing revenue exposure.
In addition to these products, which will be available for anyone who sells mobile, Affinity Billing Enterprise also has a broad suite of communication and reporting capabilities that reduce risk and exposure to potential revenue loss.
Derek Watson , Aurora’s COO advises the following “Billing platforms that can’t accurately auto rate are the biggest risk to a reseller. CDR Data, including roamed traffic must be collected on a frequent basis to be as close to real-time as possible.”
Affinity Billing Enterprise’s automated processing capabilities ensures it can process data as soon as it’s available, and via our Virtual Service Provider (VSP) channel we can also offer the integrated capabilities direct with mobile networks not available via 3rd party mobile resellers.
Derek continues “It is essential to have the capability to prevent usage scenarios beyond the bill limit, otherwise resellers will be liable for usage charges that they are unable to pass on to their customers.”
Aurora will be guiding its customers through this challenging legislation with free webinars, 1:1 consultative advice, training and support.
We urge all resellers to talk to their billing provider to understand what is being done to their billing platform to prepare them for this legislation.