Cloud phone systems Business Considerations – A cloud can change how you do business, increasing flexibility, responsiveness, mobility and efficiency, while aiding you in improving customer service. But all those benefits are only possible if you choose the right system for your business. With so many options to choose from, it is important to have the right information, to make the best decision possible. We have compiled a list of what you need to know before committing to a cloud system.
1. Does A Cloud Phone System Meet Business Needs?
Can the hosted cloud system you are considering support enough users for your business? What about in the future? Can it expand as your business grows? Not all cloud phone systems have the option of adding users easily. A comprehensive cloud can serve many purposes in your business and save you a lot of money, because you don’t have to invest in different office equipment.
Certain cloud based phone systems include / provide functions which allow a user to;
…and more. These and other virtual and unified communication features can save you from the need to purchase additional equipment or software later on. Tip: Before choosing your cloud phones, take the time to make a list of the telephone related needs of your business so you can choose a system that meets those needs.
2. Can This Cloud Phone System Work With Multiple Locations & From Home?
If you have a single location, with no remote employees, you will have greater choice in hosted cloud phone systems. Don’t automatically assume that a system will work for multiple locations. Ensure that the cloud system you are investing in can cover all your locations, and that long distance calling between these locations is included in your package. Find out if you can transfer calls between different locations (both local and remote). Getting such information upfront can save you money. Ensure that every location of your business has the same functionality and remains connected.
3. Can I Use The Phone Equipment Our Business Already Has?
While some phone systems require expensive telephone equipment, others work with the equipment you already have on hand – like business VoIP – or without the need to purchase any added hardware. If your business is just starting out, you may not have budget to invest in phones or equipment. If that is the case, be sure to check hardware requirements, as well as any setup and / or installation costs.
4. What Is The Startup Procedure & Cost?
Some cloud phone systems are free of charge to setup and require no special equipment. These hosted systems can typically be up and running within 24 hours. However, this is not the case with every hosted phone service provider. Tip: Ensure that you know what to expect in terms of startup costs and fees, before committing to any hosted business phone system.
5. What Level Of Customer Support Is Provided?
Customer service and responsive technical support is important when your business phone system is cloud based. Tip: If you have problems, you want to ensure that you have timely assistance to minimize any downtime, or loss of important business calls.
6. What Usage Based Fees Are Charged In Addition To The Monthly Rate?
It is important to know exactly how much your new business telephone system will cost you. In addition to monthly rates, some cloud system providers charge for things such as:
Additional inbound numbers (1-800 numbers are usually an extra cost)
7. Can This Phone System Be A Disaster Recovery Solution?
Many cloud phone services can be accessed from anywhere. Because setup is all in the cloud, you have exactly what you need at your fingertips. Fast access can be via the Internet from a smartphone app, or even a softphone on a laptop. This means that in case of disaster, your company is more resilient and can get back up and running faster than businesses relying on older phone systems. The benefits of a cloud are many. Save energy, be kinder to the environment, cut costs, and more by making the switch to a virtual or cloud phone system today.
Cloud Business Phone Service Benefits…Continued
The way your business manages internal and external communication, significantly impacts everything from employee productivity and satisfaction, to customer relations and retention. A key element to this communication is your business phone service. In the past, many companies opted for an on-premise Private Branch Exchange ( ) to connect employees with other employees. As well as facilitate phone conversations with employees and external clients, vendors, etc.
While on-premise s (refers to a installation within the Local Area Network or LAN), do fulfill many communications needs, today’s digital and global world can make it difficult for those systems to adjust. This is due to the increased demands and flexibility required of today’s telecommunications. Fortunately, as cloud server technology becomes a standard in today’s computing world, so does the notion of a cloud business phone service.
Despite the continual growth of cloud-based services, many companies may be hesitant to make the jump. It is assumed that migration, integration and long-term use can be both complex and costly. However, those who do make the switch typically find their decision to boast long-term benefits to their operations and their bottom line. Though the reasons are many, here are a few more major points to consider if you’re thinking of making the move to a cloud-based phone service.
Easy Administration and Maintenance
As a hosted service, cloud business phones negate the need for onsite hardware, maintenance, and management. Without the need to worry about hardware configuration or ongoing maintenance, businesses can take full advantage of a cloud-based phone service (and all its features) without straining internal resources. We find this to be particularly beneficial for companies with a minimal IT staff, as our customer service can work with office managers and administrators to keep things up and running with, negating the need for the strong technical skills often required for on-premise solutions.
Mitigation Of Risks & Easier Disaster Recovery
On-premise solutions operate off hardware housed and managed within your facility; this also makes them uniquely vulnerable to localized fires and power failures, human error, and natural disasters.
Though any location can be vulnerable to those circumstances, a cloud business phone service offers fail-over capabilities, mitigating the risk of potentially disastrous interruptions of service through server redundancy. To put it simply, cloud-based services eliminate reliance on a single piece of equipment by employing multiple servers, meaning mass outages, data interruptions, and ultimately operational and financial loss can be avoided.
A Cloud Business Phone Service Is Easy To Scale
For many organizations, one of the most attractive aspects of a cloud business phone service is the ability for it to grow and adapt as needed, and that flexibility can meet a variety of needs both in the future or throughout a single fiscal year. Businesses that plan to increase their personnel or open another location within the next few years can start small and easily expand without the hassle of on-site updates and configurations. Similarly, companies that rely on a phone service to handle seasonal call volume will find it’s easy to increase and decrease functionality as needed.
Unlimited Remote Solutions of Cloud phone systems Business Considerations
Today, many find the ability to work remotely can increase productivity and accommodate the needs of a global market. For that reason, employees at various levels are often engaging in workplace activities outside of the office.
Though often beneficial, this can lead to gaps in an otherwise unified communication front. This problem, and the price to resolve it, increases substantially if a remote workforce is part of an overarching business strategy. However, cloud-based business phone services can offer an easy and cost-effective solution for remote work by allowing employees to access office phone services through apps installed on their desktop or mobile phones, allowing for easy internal and external communication that upholds both functionality and brand perception.
Significant Phone Bill & Service Savings
Though the benefits and perks may seem indicative of increased spend, the opposite is true. In fact, small businesses that decide to make the switch to VoIP services can achieved save up to 45% on their monthly phone bill. Long distance calling, maintenance and technical oversight, migration or employee line changes, and equipment can all be costly, but cloud business phone servers can eliminate or decrease the amount spent on those common needs.
Additionally, because the use of cloud-based phone systems is becoming more frequent in today’s business world, top providers offer feature-rich packages and other perks, such as free phone upgrades as part their basic services, which can increase efficiency and internal organization without tacking on additional fees and charges. Cloud business phone services can provide organizations with the flexibility and functionality they need at a cost that is typically lower – in both direct and indirect expenses – than alternative business phone services.
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