When was the last time you called your office?
Phone calls are the most common first point of contact between businesses and customers, and even though the tech has changed dramatically, many companies are still using systems dating back to Y2K.
People often don’t even realize there is a problem with their system until it stops working. Customers get frustrated trying to reach the right people, their questions go unanswered, and before you know it – you’ve got a bigger problem than just a few missed calls.
Even if your system seems to be working okay, there could be several issues limiting efficiency with your organization.
Problems With PBX Phone Systems
If your system hasn’t been upgraded in the last 10 to 15 years, there’s a good chance you’re using PBX hardware, and that could be costing your organization.
Busy signals and bad connections send customers away before they even hear a friendly voice. PBX systems also have limited line availability. If you’re on line one with a call holding on line two, a third caller will not get through.
Staticky lines are a problem you might not even hear about until someone complains. Poor connections are not always a two-way street. You might hear your customers loud and clear, but they may not hear you!
Even in the best situation of open and clear lines, your customers can easily get lost in the shuffle with PBX systems. If someone on your team doesn’t answer when a customer calls, they will probably take their business elsewhere.
Benefits of VoIP Systems
When you upgrade your business phones, the change is noticeable and immediate.
Instead of running through legacy wired phone lines, Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, is delivered through the system that provides your internet service. If there is a problem with the line, you are notified immediately, rather than having to wonder why your phone isn’t ringing.
VoIP systems also offer auto-attendant services. Instead of one person answering all incoming calls, each line would have a code the customer can push to get to the person they want to speak with.
In addition, VoIP brings the benefits of Session Initiation Protocol, also known as SIP. This is beneficial for businesses with multiple lines. SIPs are predetermined routes a customer can take through your phone system, starting the moment the call is answered.
Have you ever sat in an office and heard one phone ring over and over? A SIP system fixes that problem. The call rings on the first line, then after a predetermined time it will hop to a second, and sometimes a third, which enables your team to get to customers quicker.
SIP systems also bring reliability to a busy office. If the VoIP system goes down (usually due to an internet outage), SIP will reroute calls to your mobile numbers. If there is an interruption of service on your VoIP system, it will send you an automated alert that something is wrong. With a PBX system, you will discover a problem only when someone finds it and speaks up. We’ve seen cases where businesses realized their voicemail was down on a phone line months after the problem occurred. Instant alerts prevent any technical issue from slipping under the radar.
Benefits of Leasing a Phone System Using HaaS
If a VoIP system is starting to sound good, you may be concerned about replacing your equipment and retraining your staff. A HaaS plan simplifies both challenges.
As we’ve written about in earlier posts, HaaS stands for Hardware as a Service. In these arrangements, a Managed Services Provider leases the equipment to your business and manages all the maintenance and upgrades. This helps you save money in a few ways.
Predictability – Instead of a capital investment, office phones become a hassle-free operating expense.
Technology – Instead of making huge updates to the entire system all at once, HaaS contracts implement change in stages, making each transition less disruptive to your operations.
Maintenance – Your provider will take care of all maintenance and upgrades, keeping your hardware running smoothly and making sure you always have the best equipment to accomplish your organizational goals.
Upgrades to the system can be done incrementally as technology advances, rather than in big (and costly) chunks every 10-15 years. This means no major downtime as your entire office is refitted with new machines and your staff is completely retrained.
Should Your Organization Use HaaS?
HaaS offers several advantages, but it’s not for every business out there.
If your company prefers predicable monthly expenses and gradual improvements to major upgrades every ten years or so, HaaS might be a great option for you to consider. Buying a system and working it to death used to be feasible in earlier years. Today, technology changes so fast that every business should have a plan for hardware upgrades.
An IT assessment from a managed services provider will help you create a roadmap that makes sense for your business.
If your phone system needs an upgrade, it’s best to know all the facts.
An upgrade to VoIP can ensure your customers will always get the service they expect. Calls that connect the first time with clear lines give callers confidence in your services.
And as we all know, it’s less expensive to keep customers happy than it is to find new ones.