Since 1867 and the first phone conversation when Mr. Bell asked Mr. Watson to come into the next room, the telephone has continued to change. Rotary, wall, touchpads, cordless, cell, satellite--technology has come a long way in one hundred and fifty years. In 2019, people use phones regularly for personal and business use. Staying on top of important dates with calendar apps, checking in with coworkers using collaborative software, perusing e-mails between meetings, and sending text messages are all modern conveniences that Alexander Graham Bell wouldn't have dreamed of. All of those listed capabilities, however, are performed on a mobile phone. Mobile phones get replaced when their contracts expire or when they require service. What about office phone systems? When are they usually upgraded?
The average business phone system has a lifespan of only 6 to 8 years, but sometimes they stick around for ten to twenty. Without constant contract expiration notices, how is an office manager or IT decision maker to know when to replace their phone system? Chances are, they rely on feedback from workers. There's no reason to live with antiquated technology, especially when there are several business phone system upgrades available. When looking for failure, however, it's essential to know what to look for.
Here are some tell-tale telephony warning signs.
1. Confused calls
There's no reason a business phone should be routing calls to the wrong person with today's technology. Sending a call to the correct person is Phone 101. In this same line of thinking, there's also no good reason a call should route to an absent employee. Busy signals? These should also be a thing of the past.
2. Disparate systems
If there are complaints about confusing features or different methods at different locations, there's one word to fix this issue: streamline. It saves time and money to have all employees at all locations on the same page, using the same system.
3. Missed calls
Losing or dropping calls due to equipment or network failure is unacceptable. If it's a client call that's dropped, it's embarrassing. When trying to dial into a meeting and an inability to connect causes tardiness, it looks incredibly unprofessional. Having a reliable telephony system bolsters both employee and client confidence. Employees know their system will work, and clients know they can always get in touch.
4. Unreliable bills
When it comes to business phone systems, there should be billing consistency. There's no data plan; businesses aren't charged by the megabyte, like a personal mobile plan. Companies should pay the same amount every month. If this isn't the case, its time to upgrade to a new system with a payment plan that doesn't gouge.
5. Inflexible capability
The modern workforce is on the move. With more workers taking more hours from home or while on travel, there needs to be a way to accommodate how the workforce is changing. Most organizations think about business phone systems as one desk phone--a solid piece of technology that sits in the office. What about answering calls from a PC, work smartphone/mobile, or tablet? Allowing employees the flexibility to answer and call from wherever empowers them to think in a new way while they're working in new ways. Providing a corporate culture where alternative work styles are encouraged also attracts new talent to businesses.
Are you ready to upgrade your business phone system?
The thing about upgrading small business phone services is that it's also unifying systems. It's all about bringing voice and data together--no longer thinking of these as separated systems. The answer to an outdated telephony problem is a software-based unified communication solution. New systems can run in the cloud, over the internet companies are already using. These systems don't even require a desk phone; although, companies can use one if they prefer. A cloud based Managed Voice Service, like Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), is a modern alternative to old phone systems. Managed Voice Services offer several benefits to small businesses and eliminate all of the pain points listed above.
A few benefits of VoIP Services
1. Lower costs
Who doesn't want to pay less? With a Managed Voice system, both phone and internet are combined on one bill. Systems like VoIP also eliminate single phone lines, which drives down cost. Virtual phones can eliminate the need for desk phones as well, furthering cost savings.
2. Easy integration
Since Voice over IP utilizes the internet most companies are already using, it is incredibly simple to integrate with other systems.
3. Consistent calling
Managed Voice solutions eliminate the issues of antiquated phone systems like dropped, missed, or misplaced calls. Not only is the technology newer, but it's also regularly being updated via its connection to the web, keeping it up to date.
4. Enhanced flexibility
Take a call from a PC. Take a call from a tablet. Still have a desk phone? Take a call from there. Homesick but need to take a call on a work laptop on home internet? VoIP phone systems integrate with modern cell phones, allowing you to take a phone call from anywhere.
Whether you’re looking to pick up the phone and call or jump on a video conference, getting in touch with someone should be easy. That’s why your business deserves a collaboration tool that can do it all. UC-One lets you call, message, or meet with anyone from any device. SumnerOne is ready to help your business transform the way you get things done. Contact us or download our eBook to learn more about a Unified Communications solution like UC-One.