There is a lot of buzz surrounding Business VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and rightfully so. Traditionally business phone systems required onsite equipment and connection through a local phone provider. There were not a whole lot of choices for the service, if any. There also wasn’t a lot of competition either. Fast-forward to today with new innovations and technology (the internet, and the cloud), suddenly business phone service has become a whole new ballgame.
Many companies are switching from traditional onsite phone systems to cloud-based hosted VoIP service. There are 3 key reasons companies are making the switch (1) Cost Savings (2) Productivity (3) Availability.
- Cost Savings: One study found that “switching to VoIP can save small businesses as much as 45 percent each month over traditional phone service.”
- Productivity: Another recent study found that companies that invested in technology which allowed employees more flexibility to work remotely saw a 20 percent increase in productivity.
- Availability: As companies continue to switch to business VoIP, more services become available. The market is expected to grow to $140 billion USD by the year 2021.
Although there are advantages of using Business VoIP service, there are also potential pitfalls to avoid. Below are the Top 5 Pitfalls of Business VoIP and items to consider before switching:
(1) Quality of Service
VoIP calls can suffer from delays, echoes and other quality issues. It’s important to have a provider that has a good network, in addition to good-quality desk phones and either enough bandwidth or a dedicated connection in place specifically for your voice service. Your VoIP provider should be able to let you know if your current internet bandwidth is sufficient or if you will need another connection. Your provider should also recommend or provide options for Quality of Service (QoS) equipment that will be installed at your business location so any issues can be monitored, identified and fixed. Beware of low-priced providers, as it is a potential red flag for low-quality service.
(2) Internet Connection
Traditional phone systems don’t depend on an internet connection, but VoIP service runs exclusively over the internet. If your internet is not working, then you don’t have VoIP phone service. Some providers offer redundancy options where calls can be routed to mobile phones or switched to a backup internet connection, if available.
(3) Power Required
Traditional phone systems don’t depend on power or internet connection, but VoIP requires both. If you don’t have power, you don’t have the internet and therefore you don’t have VoIP phone service. In addition to the redundancy options mentioned above, some companies might have back-up power contingency plans.
VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, so there is a chance that your phones could be compromised like can other internet-connected devices. Your VoIP provider should have a plan in place to keep your phones safe. Your company should also have processes and procedures in place to keep all internet-connected devices protected and secure.
(5) Hassle of Switching
Moving from one service to another service involves change that can be disruptive for your company. The key to overcoming this obstacle is having a good consultative sales process that understands your current phone system set-up and can translate that set-up to the new system. Leading up to the transition of your service, there should be exchange of information, documentation filled out and on-boarding calls to help make the transition as smooth as possible.
Go beyond VoIP with Level365
We can help you avoid the pitfalls of VoIP. Find out why Level365’s Unified Communications platform is more than just VoIP service. Learn how we help small-to-medium companies improve and integrate communications. Check out our Top 5 Benefits of UC here.