As the NBN roll out continues, more businesses are considering moving their telephone and communication requirements to the Cloud but are they ready for the move? What do you need to do to be ready to implement a hosted PBX?
It is worth doing the homework before researching providers, you will then understand the language, terminology and implications of switching.
If the NBN has already reached you then your internet connection will be robust enough to handle a hosted solution. If you are still waiting, you need to ensure you will have adequate speed for both upload and download, it is possible to do this test yourself online. One test site is the Department of Communications MyBroadband site. You can give the results to a provider for them to assess. If the speed test is adequate you also need to consider future growth and whether what you have is capable of expansion.
The business probably already has internet connectivity and existing equipment but you need to know if your router and your network in general is compatible, so a provider will need to know make and model, as well as the number of phones you currently have and how many you want to have for your hosted environment. A provider will also need to know what functionality you want in the hosted environment.
Battery power as a backup is a good idea, particularly if the area you operate in is prone to power outages, a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) is advisable.
The firewall you have will also have an impact on the switch to a hosted PBX, so you need to know whether it is set up to allow the appropriate traffic to pass through. Your provider will be able to guide you on this. This also relates to whether you have servers in-house which need to be accessed from outside, so all the information you can provide about your local area network and your wider network requirements, the better. If your business uses fax machines, these need to be factored into the hosted setup, so you need to ensure a provider is able to handle this requirement.
The existing infrastructure as a whole needs to be assessed for its suitability with a hosted setup. Even if infrastructure needs to be replaced it should not have as great an impact as implementing a new in-house PBX.
A reliable, experienced provider will ask you about all of the above and more, so do your research, gather your information and think about what you want to achieve.
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