10 Compelling Benefits of a VoIP Phone System
Updated: Apr 13
What is VoIP?
VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) provides phone service over the internet. VoIP is also referred to as Hosted VoIP, Business VoIP, Cloud Phone System, and an assortment of different terms with similar meanings. With continual technological advantages in today’s Internet-driven society, VoIP phone systems are in high demand. A VoIP phone system is powered by dedicated fiber or a broadband internet connection; therefore, it does not rely on traditional copper phone lines. A VoIP or cloud phone provider handles all of the hardware and services remotely in geographically distributed locations or data centers. In previous years, system upgrades to your hardware was costly, but with a VoIP System all upgrades occur automatically.
How does VoIP work?
Remember dial up internet? Me too. VoIP was first introduced when internet speeds and bandwidth were low. And guess what? It didn't work that well. The proliferation of VoIP really began when Internet Service Providers started offering low-cost, high-speed internet that it requires to operate reliably.
VoIP works by taking your analog voice signal and converting it to a digital voice signal. It then compresses it and off it goes on your high-speed internet connection. Your VoIP provider receives this voice signal and is able to connect it to other telephone networks such as the PSTN (Public Switch Telephone Network).
Users will acquire more functionality, features, and dependability when shifting to a VoIP phone system. We’ve collected the biggest advantages of a VoIP phone system and formulated it into an easy to read list.
Advantages of a VoIP Phone System
VoIP phone systems use your existing internet connection to make phone calls. Therefore, the days where you need multiple phone lines are over! In today’s ever-changing economy and global market, switching to a VoIP phone system will prove to be cost-effective for your business. With VoIP, your main costs are your monthly charges from your ISP and licensing fees with your cloud phone provider. Making a call over traditional phone lines can be very expensive. By switching to a VoIP phone system, you are using the internet to relay call data which makes a long-distance call cheaper overall. Traditional phone lines charge for each minute of call time, therefore switching to a VoIP phone system will instantly save your business money.
With VoIP, your cloud phone provider should be maintaining all software and hardware upgrades within their infrastructure. Upgrades to a traditional phone system may involve additional fees and could even require a change in hardware which results in a much bigger spend every time you need a new feature or want to be current on your system release.
If you’re coming from an existing VoIP system, you can save money by reusing your existing phones and moving your service to a new provider.
VoIP systems offer an extensive number of features that can improve operational proficiency. For example, voicemails can be forwarded to emails or text, the use of a mobile app, instant messaging and more. For those customers who prefer texting over making a phone call, a VoIP phone system has them covered. By sending notifications to customers via business SMS, you have the ability to keep up with your busy life, while managing your business as well. VoIP phone systems allow for an option to use mobile apps and softphones to transfer calls and check voicemails. Therefore, a desk phone becomes less valuable during your busy day, but does not negatively interfere with the needs of your customers by not using one.
Advanced features like call recording, advanced statistics, reporting, conference services, video conferencing, instant message, and real-time call center monitoring, are available with traditional telephone services, but can be cost prohibitive especially for small businesses.
Using a VoIP phone system provides the most advanced features on the device of your choice.
With the high demand to work from home, VoIP services can be a tremendous benefit because you have the freedom to move as your business demands without any limitations from your phone system. With VoIP your business can remotely operate the voice services from your office through the internet. Mobile apps and PC softphones are meant to emulate the desk phones in your office and offer the ability to transfer calls, put calls on hold, and make outbound phone calls with your office number.
Whether you are working from home or a remote office, VoIP can effortlessly provide these solutions without major expense. This is a clear advantage to any business in today's world.
With VoIP, employees have the independence to move about the country without any added stress on their communications with customers or vendors. Gone are the days of providing personal cell phone numbers which can result in unethical practices. If the future of your business is mobile, then VoIP is in your future!
4. Highly Reliable
A common objection to VoIP phone systems is that if a business loses internet, they would be without their phone system too. In a sense it’s true, but also inaccurate. Although the physical desk phones at the location would fail, a major benefit of a VoIP system is that in the event of office phones going down because of an internet outage, calls can continue to ring on a mobile app or PC softphone. If those services are not enabled, then you can activate them in a matter of minutes for little or no cost. With this in mind, a power outage or ISP failure no longer presents the risk they once did.
Another way to define reliability is the built-in redundancy that comes with a well-designed VoIP network. Instead of a single point of failure that is inherit with most traditional phone systems, a VoIP system is backed by multiple data centers that provide real-time
replication of your phone system instance. If hardware issues occur at the data center where the primary instance of your VoIP system resides, your phone system will automatically failover to another instance on standby.
Your focus should be on the growth of your business, not technology stoppers. VoIP offers to instantly scale as your business grows, without major investment or delays.
When using a VoIP phone system, scalability in no obstacle. VoIP systems allow you to remove or add phone lines (also known as call paths) as much as you need and sometimes even on demand. With landline phone systems, if your business requires more phone lines or paths, the process is painful and labor intensive and could put additional strain on your phone system. Even if copper phone lines are available, they are no longer being maintained by providers, which makes it a risky investment.
VoIP phone systems can effortlessly add devices like desk phones. In many cases, phones can be programmed remotely and shipped to customers to plug and play. Some businesses prefer a more hands-on approach and would like their cloud provider to install additional desk phones and train their new users on the functionality. If you need to scale from a features perspective, most can be added instantly and are priced per user to keep costs low.
6. Easy to Manage
VoIP phone systems are designed for straightforward use. Administrators and employees can adopt fast and will learn new features as they go, without feeling like they need a degree in telecommunications.
Employees who are used to a traditional phone system will find that VoIP phone systems are easy to operate. They were designed for two users in mind. The first user in mind is the ‘change is hard’ user. For them, VoIP systems were built to emulate certain functions of the traditional system that you’re coming from. The feature Call Park was designed for users that are used to ‘multiple lines’ with visual indicators on their phones.
The second user is the ‘change is exciting’ user. VoIP phone systems provide user level access like never before (of course only if your administrator permits it). Some users want more control over their phone and extension. Changing your answering rules, running your own reports, adjusting time frames and perhaps even uploading your own hold music are all things that are easily accomplished with VoIP.
Administrator access and programming has changed drastically. The ease of moves adds and changes have opened many doors for VoIP. Administrators now have the power to perform phone system changes without the fear they are going to take the whole system down.
Check out this video that demonstrates how easy system changes with VoIP can be.
Most traditional phone systems make it difficult (and sometimes dangerous) to make changes. Unless you have an extremely responsive partner, those changes could take days and cost you every time. With VoIP, changes are at your fingertips and better yet, free! Even if you rely on your VoIP partner for small changes, they should not be charging for simple requests because of the simplicity. Of course, every vendor is different.
7. Effective Communication
Because of the robust features a VoIP phone system offers, the communication within your business will be more effective. For example, you can have a phone call be sent to your desk phone for the first few rings, then to your mobile phone, tablet, or laptop if the call goes unanswered – or how about have them all ring simultaneously?
You will never miss important phone calls and you’ll spend less time checking your voicemail. With your employees working from a range of locations such as their home, within the office, or around the world, effective communication is crucial to the success of your business.
8. Easy Setup
A major benefit of VoIP phone systems are that they are incredibly easy to install. There is no need to have a technician running phone wire throughout your office. Instead, IP phones are virtually plug-and-play and use your existing ethernet (Cat5 or Cat6) wiring instead of their own dedicated connection. Can you use dedicated ethernet? Sure. But you don’t need to.
Setup can be handled a couple different ways. The physical installation of the desk phones and the appropriate network equipment varies depending on your chosen VoIP provider. Some of the ‘larger’ providers will program your phones remotely and ship them to your office. They rely on the customer to plug in the phones properly and mostly remain hands off. If required, these providers will send you their VoIP gateway or router, preprogrammed, and ask the customer to get it online for them to access it remotely. As far as training, many of them will send a ‘how-to’ guide, but will not provide any hands-on training or host virtual training sessions. This may work for an office of two or three phones, but is rarely welcomed by bigger businesses.
The second school of thought with a VoIP phone system setup is something typically offered by your local VoIP providers. Plenty of local VoIP providers offer their in-house technicians and network engineers to perform the custom programming, installation and training at the customer location or locations. Questions and thoughts related to your phone system normally present themselves during an installation. Without a physical presence, those thoughts typically get lost in the shuffle of your day to day activities. With the experts there, often times for multiple days in a row, your system can truly be customized and optimized for each of your users.
9. Simplified Conferencing
Conferencing with a traditional phone system is not easy and you will most likely have to pay additional costs for any significant size conference call. VoIP phone systems offer conferencing at an affordable rate and can be bundled with your other VoIP line items. Pricing depends on your provider, but conferencing calling is usually a per minute rate and depends on the number of callers.
Competing for the conference line can be avoided as well. One telephone number can be designated as a conference bridge. Then, multiple sessions or rooms can be created with unique passwords to hold multiple conference calls at the same time.
Video conferencing with a VoIP system is almost a standard feature these days. Instant or scheduled video meetings with screen share capabilities over a browser cannot get much easier for your users. Businesses large and small have a constant need for conference calls and face-to-face interactions with each other and their customers. VoIP phone systems help relieve the burden of third-party.
10. Third-Party Integration
Some VoIP providers are not naive to the fact that your team lives in other applications. These applications include CRMs, ERPs and other collaboration software. Some examples include:
· Microsoft Dynamics
· Microsoft Teams
Even though VoIP phone systems offer certain features that these business applications offer as well, VoIP providers that have integrations to these third-party solutions are much better equipped to provide the custom programming they tout.
Changing your workflow is challenging to a business and not well-received by users. A VoIP phone system should create an easier flow between the existing applications used. Instead of conforming to a VoIP providers way of doing things, combine the power of each to maximize efficiencies.
Recent Communications has been providing high-quality, customized telecommunications solutions to businesses for over twenty years! If your business has VoIP requirements or would like a quote, please call us at 484-998-4540 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you know a business or organization that could benefit from understanding how VoIP phone solution features can support them, please share this post!