NHL Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky once famously said, "You miss 100 percent of the shots you don't take."

Who knew the musings of a hockey legend would apply so perfectly to the state of unbillable revenue in telecommunications?

According to a survey from KPMG, an epidemic of revenue leakage exceeding 1 percent annually has affected more than one-third of communication service providers, with 15 percent of respondents citing a more than 10 percent drain. Nearly all of them agree (94 percent) the worst is yet to come.

What causes CSPs to lose revenue at such an alarming rate?

Legacy systems not prepared for mobile billing

Mobile technology is both a blessing and a curse for telecommunications companies looking to expand the services they offer. These devices present a bright future for profitability, so long as providers have the right systems in place to monetize them.

This is a feat, however, that not every billing platform can pull off. Legacy billing systems often lack the capabilities needed to rate and invoice mobile usage. After all, these services can be very different from what telecoms have traditionally sold. Providers are forced, therefore, to settle for limiting the plans they offer and charge MRCs only. Because they do not bill for usage, they fail to capture as much revenue as they otherwise could have.

Poor usage recovery capabilities

When billing systems are unable to turn usage records received into billable records, they become persistent sources of revenue leakage for telecoms service providers.  Regardless if the issue is bad data, misconfiguration or user error, many telecom billing departments lack the tools they need to fix the problem. Billing departments need visibility into the number of unbillable records they currently maintain, the reasons why the accounts cannot be billed and what the clear paths ahead are for collecting revenue. Without this crucial data, there's no stopping unbilled usage from happening.

If your telecommunications business struggles to plug up its revenue leakage, talk to an IDI Billing Solutions representative about our mobile provider support and our CostGuard® Unbillable Usage Dashboard. This powerful component to our telecom billing software allows billing professionals to spot errors and missed opportunities, then perform root cause analysis to help remedy the underlying issues that led to revenue loss in the first place. Click below to learn more.

And remember, you miss 100 percent of the transactions you don't bill.