The corporate telephone industry is seeing a significant change. Public switched telephone network (PSTN) decommissioning and the end of ISDN devices that rely on PSTN infrastructure were both declared by BT back in 2015. This indicates that starting in 2025, all phone calls will be transmitted over a broadband connection, making analogue telephony obsolete.
Users of legacy phone systems will be severely impacted by this since they won't be able to place or receive calls once the switch is turned off. Though BT plans to stop selling new ISDN devices as early as September 2023, the shift to digital telephony may have an impact on your company even earlier than 2025.
So what is the alternative?
VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) is a phrase used to describe the standards, technologies, and technical protocols that allow voice data to be transmitted across IP networks, or essentially the internet. SIP trunking and hosted phone systems are the two main categories of VoIP solutions, which come in a variety of shapes.
SIP trunking is a fantastic choice for companies wanting to use an existing PBX that is located on-site. SIP trunks serve as virtual phone lines that enable the transmission of voice and multimedia data over a broadband connection.
Hosted phone systems operate as a private branch exchange right out of the box, with the underlying infrastructure being hosted and maintained in the cloud by a VoIP provider. Hosted VoIP can be a terrific option to update your telephony and provide your team access to a number of capabilities, including the potential for unified communications, without having to make a sizable capital investment if your traditional phone system is beginning to seem dated.
For the vast majority of enterprises wishing to modernise their communications, hosted VoIP is, in our opinion, the best choice. Let's examine five of the most convincing advantages of hosted VoIP over traditional, on-premise phone systems.
In many aspects, hosted VoIP is substantially less expensive to run than a conventional PBX. First off, you can choose to have a completely software-dependent experience. To simulate a traditional phone system, VoIP handsets can be purchased, however many users access such systems using "softphones" installed on internet-connected devices including desktop PCs, laptops, and mobile phones. New lines can be added without the need for cabling, and there is no need to maintain a large PBX server because your provider is in charge of the system's security and maintenance, and it can function with the internet connections and gadgets you currently have.
Second, the cost of calls is nearly usually significantly lower with hosted VoIP. Interplan calls are free, and outside calls, particularly those to international numbers, are considerably less expensive.
Improved flexibility and scalability
It takes only a few minutes to add new users (lines) to a hosted VoIP system because it is practically hardware independent. Hosted VoIP services are often provided on a per user, per month basis, enabling you to customise your service to precisely match the needs of your company. You may simply add additional users during times of peak demand and cut your price by deleting users when demand drops.
Unite your communications media, and bring data and telephony together
Numerous hosted VoIP solutions enable the integration of several channels of communication into the user interface of the phone system, enabling services like instant messaging, video conferencing, email, and telephone to share a single unified gateway. This increases productivity and efficiency because your staff won't need to switch between apps and devices all the time to speak with different people.
Additionally, some hosted VoIP systems allow for integration with business applications like CRMs. With useful data at your fingertips while you're on the phone, you can provide a better customer experience thanks to the marriage of data and telephony.
A wealth of features as standard
Transitioning to hosted VoIP can be an easy way cost-effective way to introduce a range of productivity-boosting call handling features to your telephony. Some of the most helpful features on offer include:
- Interactive Voice Recognition (IVR). IVR is an automation technology that allows inbound callers to route themselves to the most suitable agent via prompts and caller inputs. Indispensable when handling high call volumes, IVR puts control in the hands of the inbound caller and directs them to the information or assistance they need as efficiently as possible.
- Call Queues. These streamline the handling of high call volumes by directing calls to available agents on a first-come-first-serve basis. Welcome greetings and on-hold music can be added to improve the customer experience.
- Call groups. This feature allows high call volumes to be shared among a pre-defined group of people, sharing the workload among a team
- Call forwarding. This feature allows call redirect rules to be established to enable the rerouting of calls to another agent if a line is busy or unavailable.
If you have an internet connection, cloud-hosted VoIP enables you to take your workplace number with you and make and receive calls on it. No matter where you are, you can offer your customers the same call characteristics because to hosted VoIP's geographical independence. To provide inbound callers with the same smooth experience whether you are at your desk or out of the office, you may have calls transferred to you, have calls transferred to other members of your team, and use just one contact number.
Hosted VoIP is the future of business telephony and offers many advantages over conventional phone systems, including cheaper calls, lower maintenance costs, feature-rich calling, and simple call management.
When compared to conventional phone systems, switching to VoIP involves relatively few infrastructure modifications, and if a few straightforward preparation steps are completed, it may be done without affecting your phone service. We'll describe the minimal measures needed to guarantee a smooth transition to VoIP in our following article.
The Right IT Provider
BCNS make business easier and more cost-effective by guaranteeing that you and your team are always connected to each other and your clients. We can also guarantee that your team are using the latest version of every application to ensure that your systems are secure and you are getting the best possible benefits from your tech. Our team of experts will assist you throughout the transition and beyond to be sure you achieve exactly what you desire. At the same time, we can reduce your expenses and improve your security as well as performance! Contact us now and find out how we can help you with your business communications and move into a more productive future.