10 things to consider when choosing your telecoms services partner


How to make sure your provision for installation, maintenance and decommissioning is reliably efficient, cost-effective AND sustainable.


In the complex web of telecom network asset management, finding a partner who can seamlessly handle installation, maintenance, and decommissioning is no easy feat.

Keeping your network functioning safely, securely, and efficiently requires a comprehensive approach – but with such a wide range of options open to you, what can you do to make sure you select the right partner?

“The right telecoms service partner can ensure reliable coverage, make your network greener and more efficient AND generate you new revenue streams – so long as you choose wisely.” – Daniel Jones, Shields CEO

If your current processes are misaligned, your partners are failing their service level agreements, or you’re scaling and need someone who can fulfil all your requirements, use this short checklist to ensure you find the right people next time around.


1. Can they offer you full spectrum capabilities?


Ensure your partner ticks all the boxes, both on-site and off-site; from engineering and installation to kitting and staging, deinstallation, maintenance, testing, recycling, refurbishing, retrofitting, and reselling.

Even if you don’t require all these services now, you likely will once you start scaling. Maximise budgets and save a headache by choosing well the first time around! (Find out more about our on-site services here and off-site services here)


2. Are they willing to guarantee you a single point of contact?


We all know how annoying it is to be passed around the room with no-one really knowing the ins and outs of your project.

But when you go into a new partnership knowing communication will be simplified with one dedicated point of contact, you’ll have nothing but streamlined interactions to look forward to. And that means time (and irritation!) saved from the get-go.


3. Can they demonstrate totally secure site clearance and prove full quality assurance at every step?


Your partner shouldn’t just facilitate thorough decommissioning processes , they need to be able to prove it too. That means robust audits and quality assurance measures.

Shields is one of the telecoms sector’s only suppliers that has an internal Quality Assurance (QA) Department, offering an extensive program that is Telcordia Standards-based.

Our QA program includes audits of all our installation projects’ workmanship, related project specifications, drawings, and documentation packages. These quality audits, as well as quality alerts, and the latest revisions of both our client’s standards & Telcordia standards, are distributed to all installation team members as part of our continuous team training program. Find out more here.


4. Are they manufacturer-agnostic?


The smartest networks choose services partners that aren’t weighted towards one particular OEM. Instead, you should look for a partner who’s willing to collaborate with you to find the most cost-effective and efficient solutions to every challenge, rather than favouring a particular manufacturer.


5. Can they give you assurances that their asset recovery provision is genuinely environmentally safe?


Environmental standards are getting more and more stringent, so your partners must be able to provide proof that their processes comply – at every stage from installation through to maintenance, decommissioning and recycling.


6. Is their health and safety record in check?


Your selected partner should boast an excellent health and safety record, ensuring the well-being of both workers and the environment. A safety-focused approach to on-site work that includes risk assessments and hazard removal is a must.


7. Do they have partnerships with other vendors and suppliers that could benefit your network?


Can you leverage multi-vendor partnerships to your advantage? Some service providers can facilitate connection with other suppliers that could be useful throughout your processes.

For example, at Shields we offer end-to-end installation, maintenance and decommissioning services.


8. Do their sustainability commitments align with your network’s ESG targets?


Assess how your partner will be able to contribute to your network’s sustainability targets. Ask them how they’ll provide true visibility on their supply chain, and what actionable insights they can give you to use in your network’s own sustainability reporting.

Did you know, at Shields, our standard reports give your network the insights required for the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD)?


9. Can they show you evidence of global problem-solving expertise and extensive market knowledge?


Obviously, you’ll want to prioritise partners who have a proven track record for innovative problem-solving, backed by technical expertise and market knowledge. What examples can they give you to demonstrate how they’ve helped other networks solve telecoms maintenance or commissioning problems before? Ask them!


10. The big one: how cost-effective are they?


Cost-effectiveness doesn’t come down to “who’s the cheapest?”

Aside from the peace of mind and value you experience when you find a partner who’ll consistently provide you with that “right first time” approach you need, you can actually leverage your partnerships to introduce new revenue streams too.

For example, partnering with Shields for telecoms installation and network maintenance goes beyond all that. You also get access to the Shields Asset Management Program, which offers a comprehensive service for deinstallations; utilising smart decision scanning tools on all decommissioned equipment to decode whether the item is defective or reusable. And that means:

  • Increased savings: Equipment that can be redeployed locally or elsewhere within your network is automatically moved to the right place
  • New revenue stream 1: Surplus equipment is listed, marketed and sold on your behalf to our wider pool of telecoms networks
  • New revenue stream 2: Defective items get safely recycled, recouping the value of the precious metals for your network
  • Even more savings: Any new stock that you really do have to buy can be sourced used at a fraction of the cost you’d pay to the OEM for new


Talk to us about Shields’ bespoke Telecoms Services


Shields Telecoms Services cover all bases and tick every box, providing both on-site and off-site engineering solutions tailored to any network, big or small. Our commitment to a “get it right first time” approach ensures projects are completed on schedule, within budget, and defect-free. Our 40+ years of experience don’t hurt either!

It’s the simple reason we enjoy such long lasting relationships with all our clients.

If you’d like to explore our telecoms services and find out how we can help you strategise management, maintain and commission smarter and greener, just get in touch on the options below.


For inquiries and further information, please contact us on [email protected].