Switching from your legacy phone system can really be an easy decision unless you have just spent a lot of money acquiring it. It is easy because of compelling reasons to change.
Change is one of those reasons. Whenever changes need to be made to a legacy system, such as adding another extension, it is likely you will require a technician to do the work, this is a cost and most likely you need to wait for it to happen. This is a basic change, changes to your LAN, multi-user calls and upgrades to equipment can be complex and costly. Not so with VoIP.
The behaviour of your employees can be an obvious sign that change is required. If the desk phones stay silent and gather dust, it is a sure sign employees are communicating some other way. Instant messaging, SMS and online sites such as Google or Skype, amongst others, are the likely alternatives, so they are already using VoIP. They may also be using their own mobile devices for all of these. Flexible work arrangements like working from home and a mobile workforce will also contribute to the legacy system not being used.
A more mobile workforce is another reason to consider a change from PSTN.
The immediacy of using text when they know their target audience is available is one of the main drivers for using messaging, most sites will show who is online at any given time. This takes away the frustration of leaving voice messages and missing returned calls.
When you notice your employees are more productive using text, messaging and online tools, rather than the phone on their desk is another signal for change. With VoIP comes collaboration tools - sharing files, sharing screens and multi-user editing of documents while talking – this cannot be done with the phone on the desk, it is isolated from these other activities and cannot generate the level of productivity available online.
Depending on the industry you are in, there may be a compelling reason for retaining a landline. If you are in a hazardous industry or have patient visits which could result in the need to make emergency calls, it is a good idea to keep a landline – just one which is easily accessible and it doesn’t need a PBX.
There is no doubt that a legacy phone system can provide many modern features made possible with the right technology but their implementation will be costly both in equipment and implementation. Many advanced features will be included in the subscription you have with a VoIP, or hosted PBX provider, make this a key element of your research. All of a sudden your small business can compete with the top end of town.
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