You may be thinking of switching to business VoIP phone system if your existing phone system if near its end and if your phone bills have become sky high, or if you are unhappy with the service provider. Making switch to alternative phone system can be a big and complex decision. Hence, there are some things which you must consider before you switch to VoIP technology.
Things you must Consider Before Switching to VoIP Phones
Before you decide to take a leap there are a few things which you have to consider. If only make or receive a few phones calls a day, then the phone system which you use probably suits you fine. But, if you make and receiver a lot of phone calls every day and your business requirements expanding or if you are spreading your communication services among different solutions then you need an efficiency boost by switching to VoIP phone services because of all the great features it can offer. To further elaborate the benefits of the VoIP we are going to compare Hosted VoIP and Landline phone system.
- Limited physical infrastructure
- Auto attendants for the caller self-service
- Much cheaper than landlines
- Mobile facility
- Can enhance efficiency
- Integrates with your workflow
- Unifies communication among texting, social networking, messaging and web video conferencing
- Upgrades, maintenance is done by the host
- Need a provider that has enabled emergency services
- Potential for voice quality problems if not resourced properly.
- Competes for bandwidth with other business activities like email
- Need a reliable and strong internet connection
Landline or ISDN over PSTN
- Works when the power is out
- Few outages
- Stable, reliable old technology
- Easy emergency services
- Pay for services and calls
- Need hardware onsite
- Tied to physical office space
- Limited features and no growth
- Pay for add-on services
- Does not support unified communications
- Upgrades, maintenance needed onsite
Integration with Unified Communications/Apps
A lot of tools are used in an office space to communicate such as instant messaging, voice calls, social media, conferencing, email and more. When all of these apps are integrated into a VoIP system, it is called unified communications (UC) and it makes working easier. With Unified communication, you can have access to all the tools that you need, despite the device you use.
A few VoIP service providers provide Unified Communication, while some don’t. whichever you pick depends on what is significant to our workflows. If you answer any of the following questions yes, then a service provides which providers UC with its VoIP phone, is your best option.
- Is having customer information at your fingertips as soon as the phone rings important?
- Would you save time knowing who was busy or available before you try and call them?
- Could you decrease travel expenses by using voice and video conferencing with your remote clients and workers?
- Would your sales team benefit if phone calls to their office phone system when they are traveling were automatically transferred to their mobile phone?
- Could you benefit from time savings that come with a click to call, click to talk and click to a conference?
The real advantage of having app integration into a VoIP phone system comes from the integration itself. Generally, people use an email, social media platform, a chat application, a conference solution, and a phone as a standalone process. This creates a lot of inefficiencies, wasted time and duplicated effort. Not only does this lower office productivity, but also it decreases the return on the investment for the underlying technologies.
With a Packet Switch Telephone Network system, once you have used all your extensions, you will have to purchase a new system if you wish to expand your business. These do not come cheap. With a VoIP businesssystem, all you require is another VoIP phone and you are good to go.
Also, this means it is easy to expand to an additional location. Instead of needing a completely new, costly phone system installed, which your current phone provider might or might not be able to do. Further, if you have a second service provider, which just adds extra stress. It can also mean you will have to dial the whole phone number to call between locations instead of extensions. Some VoIP businessphone providers make it easier to call between offices through an extension, which can actually save seconds per phone call. If one makes a lot of internal calls per week then those few seconds add up.
A business VoIP system is not nearly as complicated as a PSTN, however, at times problems can arise related to the quality of voice calls or dropped calls, particularly not something that you need to experience. Hence, you have to consider the support service provider will offer. Will your VoIP service provider:
- Be familiar with your business and your system?
- Be capable of fixing an internet problem or just refer you to your ISP?
- Provide training and onboarding?
- Be available for questions 24/7?
- Refer you to their online customer forum for answers to your queries rather than talking to you?
Call Routing/Call Management
Call control is the heat of the VoIP phone technology. It determines how and where to route calls and maintain the connections. It is what allows you to specify actions like call forwarding, enabling video conferencing or restarting a call.
With call control, you:
- Make sure that customers and clients have a consistent experience each time they contact your organisation
- Centralise the management of internal and external communication
- Simplify maintenance and provisioning of cloud phone system
- Have access to multiple apps on a single and centralised platform
- Make call routing automatic and easy
Total Charges of Ownership
When you are deciding whether you wish to buy outright and manage your VoIP phone service on your own or having a host service provider do the heavy lifting, you have to look at the total charges of ownership. In order to do this, you have to consider:
- Extensive outlay to buy own hardware
- Ongoing monthly charges for the host, who does upgrades, maintenance, patches, etc.
- Charges of system installation, design, upgrades, maintenance, and customisations
- The ease with which network app developers can ‘develop and deploy the emerging apps for data communication’ resulting in decreased development expenses.
Selecting the Right UK VoIP providers
There are great VoIP phone number providers, but there are also bad ones. You want a great VoIP provider and in order to get them one best suited to your business requirements you will need a provider that:
- Takes time to understand how and why your team uses their phones
- Has a proven track record and multiple points of presence
- Can add integrations and features as you require them