Phones are still here - the best ones are in the cloud.
Some workers went home. Some came back to the office. Telecommunications has changed at an unprecedented rate to keep pace with these and other recent workforce changes. Where does the business phone system fit in the new work environment?
There are several answers. In one respect, the latest telephone solutions are a management dream. Today’s hosted phone systems connect to voice networks via the internet. This means you no longer have to pay the phone company for copper phone lines or traditional circuits. As a result, businesses save money on fixed costs and services that are no longer required. Also, like hosted software, you can now have new and more flexible purchasing options. Specifically, hosted packaging models allow you to
pick very specific features for your specific applications. Your business only pays for what it needs and nothing else.
This is just the start. There are numerous benefits to be considered. Let’s take a look at some other possibilities that can positively impact your organization.
New & better (?) players
15 years ago the phone system market was dominated by the the big system manufacturers. Companies like Lucent, Cisco, Mitel, NEC, Panasonic, Siemens and Toshiba were the leading players in the space. Today, we have an entirely new face of players to consider: 8×8, Dialpad, Nextiva, Ring Central and Net2phone are just a sample of available players in the new marketplace.
Are these young companies better than their predecessors? That’s a loaded question. Today’s technology allows providers the ability to deliver and update phones faster than ever before. Remember when you had to wait for the service tech to visit your office and fix or change a setting on your phone system? Today’s hosted phone system eliminates most tech visits. Now, most changes and fixes can be performed remotely. This is where things get a little tricky. The changes may be performed remotely but you still need a reliable vendor who will maintain and update your system as needed. Customer service is still the number one priority for realizing a productive outcome. As always you will find there are a few providers who still believe in customer service. And, as always, many more
hide behind 800 numbers and chat sessions. Technology can’t replace people who care. Beware of who you select for your business telecommunications.
Phone Control at Your Fingertips: Nextiva’s administrative dashboard allows administrators to move, reassign or even turn off extensions. There are no tickets or techs to wait on for completing common system updates.
More control? You Bet.
For those managers who look forward to having remote control over their phones that day has arrived. The best solutions provide the best management dashboards and online tools for phone system management. If you’re in the market be sure to ask for a demonstration of each provider’s online customer portal. This is the place where your technical team can save time updating system tasks (extensions, names, hunt groups, etc) as needed. There’s no need to schedule a technician if your team is willing to learn how
to make simple changes online. With proper training, your technical team will be productive. Your people become empowered and this means your organization will save additional money and time on system-management costs.
Advanced System Control Made Easy: Nextiva’s administrative controls provide a graphical interface to design and test call flows. The process is simple and only takes a few minutes. The days of proprietary codes and tech programming are largely in the past.
Once your system is in place there are more tools and productivity gains to be realized. Instant messaging, video conferencing and desktop collaboration are all available and affordable – for small businesses too! There are two keys to making these tools productive: simple design and thoroughly integrated software. As you research the candidates be sure to test drive all these tools so you can determine how easily (or difficult) the tools work and integrate with your CRMs. Don’t skimp on a provider if their cost is slightly higher. The better the desktop solution the more money and time your staff will save over time!
- CRM compatibility (Office 365, Salesforce, etc.)
- Desktop collaboration enables folks to share remote presentations and information in high-quality video
- Private messaging tools allow staff to ask questions and exchange answers quickly and easily
- Locate and dial contacts from MS Outlook and/or your laptop softphone
- Conduct all of your work activities and communications from your laptop
- Today’s hosted tools require less bandwidth than previous versions
- With proper installation and tweaking broadband connections can work just fine with hosted communications
- System management is substantially easier than before requiring less technical knowledge and time
Here at RAM we help design and install our clients’ phone systems. In our experience, design and installation has never been more efficient than we see today with hosted telephony. Since phone design is now online and not on a local server, we can test and tweak a new system without fear of interrupting a client’s current phone environment. Hosted systems save vendors and clients time and money during the installation process.
Unprecedented Value and Incentives
If your organization is serious about a telecommunications upgrade consider contacting RAM for help. We are a trusted advisor for our clients because we’ve saved them substantial money and time. In most cases we save our clients 30% on their monthly costs. We also save our clients substantial amounts of time in research, design, installation and overall system support. Additionally, our service providers are providing more financial incentives than we have ever seen in the industry. There are dozens of service providers who are competing to earn your business. Contact RAM Communications today and let us help you find the right solution for your organization.
- Greater control means less dependency on outside vendors
- Hosted telephony products are easier to provision and install
- Desktop, laptop and smartphone integrations simplify your life
- Simplified management lowers maintenance costs
- More collaboration tools provide more communication options
- More tools in one platform simplify the end-user experience
- Smaller businesses can enhance their communications affordably
- Hosted desk phones still provide the right tools and simplicity