Is the Coronavirus pandemic forcing you to change the way your business is working? It might not seem like it, but now might be the perfect time to make the switch over from your traditional phone systems to something new.
One of the big future-proof options is VoIP. But what exactly is VoIP, you ask? Here’s our beginner’s guide to all you need to know about this modern type of phone system.
So what is VoIP?
VoIP — which stands for Voice over Internet Protocol — in simple terms allows you to make phone calls through the internet, as opposed to a regular landline or mobile network. The system works by converting the call into digital signals, then sending them as data over your broadband or lease line.
Is it a flash in the pan gimmick?
No — in fact, VoIP will be the long-term future of telephone systems in the UK. In 2025, BT is switching off its traditional phone line network, so within a few years all phone calls will be made over a data connection. Investing in a VoIP system now could save your business plenty of headaches further down the line, when a switch to a new system will be forced upon you.
Can I keep my old numbers?
The short answer is yes! We should be able to port over your existing phone numbers onto a VoIP set-up with minimal fuss, avoiding any disruption to your business and customers.
What are the pros and cons of VoIP?
It’s mostly pros with VoIP these days — a huge benefit that almost all customers find once they have a VoIP system is the cost savings they make. Once it has been set up, using VoIP is much cheaper than using traditional phone lines; some businesses save as much as 80% on recurring costs! Depending on your needs and setup, you also not need to pay for calls based on distance or which country you’re calling, nor how long you spend on the phone.
As well as providing savings, it can give you a much clearer sound on high-speed internet and if your office needs lots of personnel to be able to make and receive calls at the same time, it’s a better option than splashing out on installing multiple phone lines.
At a time when your staff are more likely to be working from home, VoIP allows increased flexibility without sacrificing lines of communication. A member of staff can take their VoIP handset home with them, plug it straight into their home router and their phone will be up and running, with no fuss. They’ll retain their work number too, so your customers will still be able to reach them with ease.
In uncertain times such as those we’re facing right now, you may well have to see changes in staffing numbers. Whether you’re having to make tough decisions or are actually growing, investing in phone equipment doesn’t come at a huge cost with VoIP. All a new staff member needs to hit the ground running is a new phone number and handset, so they can be added to the team at a low cost. If you are forced to let some staff go, you can keep the handset and number for the future, also at minimal cost.
The only real disadvantage with VoIP is that if you do have a particularly poor broadband connection — something which is increasingly rare in this day and age — it can affect the call quality. However, for the vast majority of businesses, particularly those in towns and cities, this will never be a problem.
If you’d like to learn more about how VoIP would keep you and your colleagues connected, please give our experienced team a call on 01237 420010.