State University of New York

Study of the Cost of Telephone Services at Selected Campuses

Most SUNY campuses own and operate their own telephone systems, while some SUNY campuses lease their telephone systems. In addition, each campus can negotiate long distance rates with the carrier of their choice. We analyzed the cost of telephone services at 14 campuses and the central administrative office (which leases its system). We found that costs vary significantly among some campuses that are located close to one another; we question whether these costs could be reduced if telephone systems were shared by such campuses. We also found wide variances in the cost of long distance services, and identified a number of factors associated with lower costs, such as good negotiating skills and a high volume of calls. We therefore question whether costs could be reduced by sharing long distance services or establishing collective agreements with long distance carriers. We further note that some campuses, especially smaller ones, might be able to save money if they used the Office of General Services' telephone system for long distance calls. 95-D-44