Choosing a new phone system or changing your existing one can seem like a daunting task if you’re not an expert; but giving it the right attention can bring major benefits in the long run. A good manager looks not only at the current situation, but also at the development prospects of the company, so as to consider a solution that can effectively meet the requirements of the company at any time of its existence.
Choosing the right system for your business and configuring it optimally can be the differentiator you need.
In many areas competitiveness is increased and with small differences between the products/services offered and their price; to differentiate yourself in the market you need to work on the image and the quality of the interaction with customers; a good tool in this respect can be the telephone system.
Technology has come a long way from the time when all telephony could give you was a number to call and be called. Modern phone systems come with a number of features that bring communication to a new level: IVR, call queuing, simultaneous calls, time setting, conferencing, transfer, whisper&barge-in, mobile interiors, etc.
Properly configured, the telephone system can bring significant savings to a company’s budget.
A more accurate assessment of communication needs and right sizing of the system (phone numbers, extensions, national/international/roaming minutes, simultaneous calls, etc.) can reduce telephone costs. Considering that contracts are generally signed for 1 or 2 years without the possibility to reduce the subscription during that period, it is vital to size the phone system correctly from the beginning or to look for companies that offer flexible contracts (without a contract period); if you have seasonal activities, contract flexibility can be a vital point in choosing the system/operator you work with.
If chosen and set up correctly, the phone system can help you reduce other expenses:
-travel expenses (transport, per diems, accommodation)
-expenditure on purchases, maintenance, upkeep and repair of equipment
-marketing expenses, etc.
The correct evaluation of the cost of the telephone system must take into account:
-The initial cost of purchasing equipment and commissioning the solution
-Maintenance/repair/maintenance/reconfiguration costs for the equipment/system, their average lifetime and the rate of technical depreciation
-Costs of changing the system if it is technically depreciated or if it no longer meets business requirements
Spending the right amount of time at the beginning to evaluate several solutions and choosing the right one saves you important lost time later.
If you make the wrong choice in the beginning, it can cost you a lot to change the system later (both in time and money). In addition, the system must also be evaluated according to:
-time needed to learn the system
-the time needed to access the reports and the information contained in them
-the time needed to bring the system back into operation in the event of a move
-time needed to resize the solution
-time needed for reconfiguration
The first thing to decide is the type of system you want: simple phone line or PBX and if PBX is chosen, which one: classic, IP or cloud. In this regard read our article PBX-IPPBX-HOSTEDPBX to understand the differences between the three types of PBX.
If you have chosen the classic or IP telephone switchboard to install at your company’s premises, you must choose between different models, taking into account not only the needs of the moment, but also the possibility of scaling the switchboard according to the expected developments at the lowest possible cost. Then you have to choose the telephone operator: classic or VoIP and a company with which to contract for maintenance/repairs/configuration so that you are not taken by surprise by a possible breakdown. Check the response times assumed in the contract to minimise possible downtime.
If you have chosen the hosted PB X you only have to decide which operator you work with. Although in Romania the cloud telephony market is not as widespread as abroad, there are still several providers to consider. We advise you to take into account some important aspects when considering different operators:
1. First make a list of mandatory features/functions you need and a list of desirable features.
Check whether the operators you are comparing can offer you all the mandatory features and as many of the optional ones as possible. Check if the packages offered automatically include features you don’t need and if you can waive them to reduce the total cost.
2. Compare the real cost of the offers taking into account not only the package price but also other categories of costs/fees that may influence the final decision
Check what equipment and/or software is needed and how much it costs, check if there are costs for changing the contracted package either up or down, how much it costs to add or drop certain features later.
3. Check company policies on important issues:
o Contract termination or flexibility for package changes (what contract periods are available and whether you are allowed to change your package during the contract period)
o Support provided for package selection, solution understanding, access to reports and/or configurations (how much you are allowed to customize the system yourself, access to reports, IVR message logging, etc…)
o References from other users
o Possibility to test the service before buying
Optivoice offers free evaluation of your current system and advice on choosing the optimal configuration. Contact our sales team