The Benefits of VoIP for Small Business
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a type of technology that allows its users to make calls using the broadband Internet rather than the conventional or analog phone system. VoIP continues to make waves in the business world because of the advantages it provides to not just big businesses but small and medium enterprises too. According to Infonetics Research, VoIP adoption is slated to become an $88 Billion market by 2018. It comes as no surprise that many businesses are making the transition to VoIP and reaping both short-term and long-term benefits.
There are a number of reasons why an SMB should consider a hosted VoIP solution. A few of these are listed below.
Businesses can realize initial and long-term savings with VoIP. Hosted VoIP reduces overall cost-of-ownership, specifically with regard to hardware expenses because there’s no PBX equipment to buy or lease. Most business Hosted VoIP packages come with unlimited nationwide calling. Employees can call one another for free (even if they are calling another office long distance). The result of using a VoIP cloud phone system is dramatic savings in long-distance costs.
VoIP Allows Employees to Work Remotely
If your business receives just a handful of support calls on weekends, it’s wasteful to pay an employee to sit around and do nothing for most of the day. VoIP allows employees to connect to the service anywhere there’s an Internet connection. This way, you can allow on-call employees to work from home, meaning your business only has to pay for the time you need them.
Video Conference for Better Collaboration
Employees aren’t limited to audio-only conversations with VoIP: It supports video conferencing. Video calls can be very effective at increasing productivity in the workplace when employees who aren’t located together collaborate on projects.
Hosted Voice and Unified Communications mobility features allow employees to use their Business VoIP number to make or receive calls on their smartphones, tablets, or desktop PCs. They can also quickly change call routing using an easy-to-use web portal. With Hosted Voice mobility features, calls appear to originate from your VoIP number and all of your calls are routed through your Hosted Voice interface. This way, employees can take advantage of unlimited long-distance calling through the virtual phone system while working remotely, thus directly reducing costs.
Hosted Voice and Unified Communications simplify collaboration within and between offices, increase efficiency, and simplify how employees manage their communications. Hosted Voice and UC deliver productivity-enhancing features. For example, Visual Voicemail with Transcription feature of VoIP delivers the transcribed text of a voicemail to your email inbox. Enabling your employee to multitask: they can read and respond to virtual voicemails while attending a meeting or another call, without taking time to listen through the audio recordings of message after message. Employees can also host and record conference calls using desktop and mobile clients for improved collaboration. Hosted Voice and UC integrate and consolidate modes of communication to simplify and streamline interactions. With less time spent managing PBX system communication, people have more time to focus on tasks that contribute to your business goals.
With a VoIP system, you can still use your conventional phone and a VoIP converter or VoIP telephone adapter. A VoIP converter looks like a USB memory stick, which you can easily plug onto any computer. A VoIP converter will sense signals that are emanating from traditional or analog phones, and such signals will be converted to digital data that can be routed over the Internet. A computer must be turned on for the service to work. A VoIP system will also allow you to acquire your own VoIP number, so no matter where you are traveling to, just as long as you have a high speed Internet connection, you are capable of receiving phone calls to your same number.
Less Reliance on IT
Simply put, Hosted VoIP is easier and cheaper to manage and support, in part because the hosted PBX service and its features reside in the cloud. Hosted VoIP eliminates the need to maintain PBX hardware. No more re-wiring the telephone closet for moves, adds, or changes. By consolidating internet phone service for all your locations with a single provider, you also avoid managing multiple phone companies. Users can manage VoIP features and call routing themselves via an easy-to-use web interface. Plus, a voice administrator can manage users, pay invoices, access support, and purchase and manage internet phone services via an online portal virtually from any location or device.
Scales to Grows with your Business
Unlike the analog systems of old, VoIP is very easy to scale with your business’s needs. Adding an extra line for an additional employee isn’t necessary, as the system can accommodate capacity as needed.
In a nutshell, VoIP isn’t just a simple digital upgrade over your existing office analog phone service: It opens the doors for new ways to look at customer management and employee communication. A managed service provider can help your business implement numerous best practices to reap the technological benefits of VoIP.