A phone system is one of the crucial elements of any business regardless of its size. It makes it easier for the business owner to handle all phone communications professionally since all business calls are routed to a single landline.
However, in today’s digital era, even old-fashioned phone systems have had to adapt to the new normal.
With plenty of companies moving to the online space and employees embracing remote work, a virtual phone system offers much more functionality as compared to landlines. VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) services have emerged as a highly effective telecommunications solution for entrepreneurs to streamline their business activities.
VoIP technologies allow companies to communicate with customers and suppliers across both local and international markets affordably. Below is a detailed analysis of what a virtual phone system is and how it can be of great benefit to remote offices.
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What Is a Virtual Phone System
A virtual phone system is a cloud-based communications system that allows users to make and receive phone calls via an internet connection through a desktop app, desk phone, or computer/laptop.
Using a cloud-based phone system will provide many benefits for your business as long as there is a stable internet connection. If you own a small business, using cloud-based phone systems will be a good choice as it is cost-effective and by moving communications to the cloud, business owners will have a much smoother workflow and efficient business operations.
Unlike traditional phone landline systems that restrict the user to one location, you can pick and make your calls from anywhere.
So how does a virtual phone system work?
A functional virtual phone system manages all the telecommunications infrastructure with the PSTN, otherwise known as the Public-Switched Telephone Network.
Phone extensions do not exist as physical lines. They exist virtually within a VoIP system which serves as the core of any virtual phone system. The VoIP system converts phone calls from analog sound using VoIP codecs to achieve better call quality.
Since a virtual phone system does not exist physically, users can forward calls from their office phone to their cell phone or other work colleagues. They also allow for text messaging services on the same platform.
Here are more benefits you can expect from incorporating a virtual phone system in your company’s communications system.
1. Lower Business Costs
The costs of running a cloud-based phone system are much lower as compared to call charges from traditional phone services.
While businesses differ with their needs, you’ll find that on average, a landline phone system will cost a business about $50 per line every month. This cost covers mostly domestic calls alone. In comparison, VoIP plans are available for about $20 per line.
This means that a virtual phone system can reduce your phone bill by more than half of what it costs using a traditional phone system. Some of the direct costs you can expect to do away with by adopting a virtual phone system include private branch exchange (PBX) costs, calling expenses, wiring fees, as well as maintenance.
In case you’re not familiar with what a private branch exchange is, it is an on-site piece of hardware that acts as a server connecting several landline phones in an office. A PBX installation can cost anywhere between $750 and $2,000.
Virtual phone systems don’t require a PBX installation since a simple broadband connection can power the service easily. They also don’t need extra wiring apart from the electrical and ethernet wiring you would otherwise require for your business.
2. Easily Redirect Calls
Virtual phone systems allow users to redirect calls they’re not ready to take or when they’re out of the office. Users have access to a menu from where they can choose to redirect phone calls to someone on the team who is best poised to handle the concerns of the party on the other end of the line.
For instance, if the caller is a customer with a question involving sales, the sales team can easily take over to serve the customer.
If you’re waiting for an important call but have to attend an urgent meeting, you can always redirect the call to someone available within that time frame to take the call. You can also set an away message if you’re away.
3. Offers Plenty of Advanced Features
Virtual phone systems provide a ton of features that you would otherwise not experience by using a traditional phone system. With features such as call transferring and auto attendant, a big company can feel more approachable to its customer base.
For instance, the auto-attendant feature can give your business a very professional look among your clients. If your business is based in California, you can get a VoIP number with the North Carolina code so that your customers within the area can perceive you as a local business even when you aren’t.
Virtual phone systems with multi-party calling functionalities allow for robust teleconferencing so that more people can join the same call. This can be a very affordable and convenient feature for businesses both large and small.
4. Better Voice Call Quality
When virtual phone systems started to roll out, it was no secret that they had poor quality calls characterized by latency and sudden drops for no reason. But that was then. Today, technologies have immensely improved and voice quality is no longer an issue thanks to faster internet speeds and stronger connectivity.
VoIP calls have zero lag issues, call dropouts, and the sound quality is very crisp and clear, allowing the user to focus on the agenda of the call. Innovations such as noise-canceling and background noise elimination have also helped virtual phone systems achieve cutting-edge sound quality.
5. Users Can Work and Communicate From Anywhere
A VoIP number provided by a virtual phone system is portable, meaning you can use the same number everywhere you go. This is very convenient for people who are often on the move because they can keep the same business number even if their company address changes.
You don’t have to wait at your desk for that important phone call since you can route the call to your mobile phone and have voicemails delivered to your email as an MP3.
The Last Call
Incorporating a virtual phone system into your business operation can provide great benefits regardless of if you’re a startup, a sole proprietor, or a well-established company.
But with all the features and benefits provided, it can all seem a bit too overwhelming. As such, it’s a good idea to have an experienced, reliable consultant on hand to help you make the right decision as per your business needs.