If you are setting up a business phone system for a small to medium sized business (SMB) with 15 to 250 users, the following sections should be supported by your business system provider:
Remote workers / home workers
If you are working remotely from the office or from home and have access to your company network, you can connect an IP phone (either software or hard phone) to your company’s PBX and act exactly as if you were in the office. Even with a VPN setup, it is possible to interact with all data and files as if you were still in the office at your desk.
Line rental & call costs
Long-term costs are always an important factor when setting up a small business phone system. Ideally, you want a business phone provider that will keep your rental fee as low as possible while maintaining quality. The same goes for using the line, because the last thing you want to do is burden your business with expensive connectivity. Be aware of what the line of business phone system vendors can handle and whether it covers all your current needs and any future telecom developments you may have planned.
Mobile communication plays a crucial role in today’s business world. Therefore, they are an essential part of a business telephone system. Make sure you choose a company that can offer a good range of cell phones and networks.
Speed and download sharing are the two main factors to consider when choosing an internet package for your business. Unless your business uses the internet very little, an unlimited download package is almost always the best option. The average internet speed in the UK is 4MB, so any package that can offer a speed on the plus side of 4MB is a good choice.
Mobility (FMC – Fixed Mobile Convergence)
FMC allows the user to make calls from a mobile phone over your company’s Wi-Fi network or over the GSM network when leaving the office or other Wi-Fi networks (at home or larger public areas).
You can also dial into the office’s FOC and call from any of your company’s standard phone lines at landline rates instead of cellular rates. Savings from dual-mode cell phones (smart devices like PDAs) are very significant for any business paying for more than a few cell phones.
If you are a business operating from more than one office, there are many benefits to networking your phone system so that it functions as one system.
The main advantages would be:
- FOC phone calls between sites
- Shared or centralized operators
- Provides employees in different locations with centralized and shared functions such as extension status, call transfer, call forwarding and callback, all of which work perfectly even if they are in different locations
- The establishment of collection groups in different places
- Cordless DECT roaming between sites
Voice over IP (VoIP)
This is a technology that converts traditional voice into packets of data so you can send the call over your LAN if you’re in the office, or over any form of corporate IP connections such as a WAN or ADSL.
When the IP call reaches its destination, the call is converted back to traditional speech.
The main advantages of VOIP are:
- Running voice and data over one network and a CAT5 jack in the office saves additional resources required to run a data network and a voice network.
- Connection of telephone systems via IP connections such as company WAN or IP/VPN.
- Allows a home worker to remain in full contact with the office while working remotely via a standard ADSL connection.
- Allows you to connect your mobile phone to the PBX via Wi-Fi IP Connection.
The ability to record phone conversations for later playback and analysis can be great for training, troubleshooting, and customer service. This includes end of call recording for inbound, outbound, and conference calls.
Conversations are recorded on a storage medium, often a hard drive on a local PC or network device. Key features would include a quick search function to locate recordings for playback. Call recording offers users peace of mind. The information recorded is valuable and can be used for training purposes and dispute resolution of false claims. Not all users require full-fledged and sophisticated call recording systems. There is a case for lower cost systems that archive calls for a set period of time.
If you access your messages using a standard telephone, you can check your voicemail, check your e-mails via text-to-speech, and forward faxes to any fax machine in your area. The way it works is that we deliver a server and software that connects to your LAN and fully integrates with your Exchange server. The messages are still saved on the voicemail server and can be played back if required.