Office phone systems are not something most businesses have ever had to think much about. You usually had a choice of landline provider but that was about it.
That is all changing now. There are now more options for a business to consider and they can make a big difference in how your business can operate. From reducing costs to helping with remote working there are now more solutions than ever to make the most out of your telephone system.
To help we have looked at the options available for you. Then we have highlighted the key areas to look for when choosing the best office phone system for your business.
Landline vs VoIP
Your first decision needs to be landline or VoIP. It'a likely that your business has been using a traditional landline telephone system the whole time you have been in business.
Back in the day it was pretty much all you could and you would shop around for the best price and that was the only decision you needed to make.
VoIP has changed that and now is an attractive alternative to the traditional landline model. In comparison to the landline, VoIP is a new technology but it has been around for a few years now.
What is VoIP?
Firstly, VoIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. VoIP allows you to make free, or low cost calls over the internet. You can call any telephone in the world and they can call you, regardless if they are using VoIP or not.
With VoIP you don't even need a headset to make calls, you can call directly from your PC or Laptop. One of VoIP's biggest appeal is the flexibility it can offer a business. We will go into that in greater detail later on, first, let's look at pricing.
Differences in pricing
Landlines are more expensive than VoIP systems, especially when you add features like voicemail, call waiting or caller ID. The biggest benefit of VoIP is saving you can make it telephone costs. Because you are making calls over the internet you have no extra cost for call minutes or extra phone services.
Even when you factor in buying new handsets for your VoIP telephone system you are still going to save money in comparison to a landline phone service.
The difference in sound quality will depend on your internet connection. If you have a fast connection then you are going to enjoy superior sound quality with a VoIP system.
Even if you have a slow connection you are not going to notice much difference between your existing landline and VoIP.
A lot of the country has had to get used to remote working this year. With a VoIP telephone system, you can make and receive calls exactly like you were in the office. The easiest part of remote working for Infotech has been our telephones thanks to our use of a VoIP system. We have been able to carry on communicating internally and externally with our customers and suppliers as if we were still in the office.
Because VoIP is internet-based you can take your office phone with you wherever you go. I don't mean carrying your handset around either! You can turn your mobile into your office phone and make and receive calls from your office number on your mobile.
VoIP is fantastic for remote working. Your staff can call internally from whether they are for free. Suddenly your telephone system reaches all over the country, or the world, and at no extra cost. It's very likely to be cheaper because you are using an internet connection.
The world is moving away from analogue or traditional systems in many areas, and telephony is no exception. VoIP is full of features that can increase employee productivity as well as allow a company to personalise how their telephone system works.
There are too many features to include here, but some include Voicemail to email, easy conferencing, smart call queues and monitoring. Depending on the VoIP system you go with you will have a choice of even more features as well.
Changes in technology
In a few years, we may no longer have the choice to make. BT is to close down the traditional PSTN service by the end of 2025. No more landlines. It looks like by 2025 that VoIP might be the only option.
How will the migration away from landline look in 2025? That's unclear at the moment but that's millions and millions of landlines potentially being moved over to VoIP in a short period of time. It might be the best option for a business to switch now and get accustomed to VoIP before it's potentially forced on them in 2025.
For years businesses haven't really had much choice to make with their telephone systems. That's all changed now and it looks like in a few years we could be saying goodbye to the landline for good.
That shouldn't be something that scares your business though. Because the alternative will cost you less in the long run and offers much more than a landline phone system can.
Infotech can manage your entire telephone system, from installation through to training your staff and managing the system day to day. For more information on how we can help with your telephone system click here, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01634 52 52 52.