Hosted Phone System

Find out how a hosted phone system can optimize your business communications.

guy_on_phone.png

Hosted Phone System

Find out how a hosted phone system can optimize your business communications.

guy_on_phone.png

Hosted Phone System

Find out how a hosted phone system can optimize your business communications.

guy_on_phone.png

Hosted Phone System

Find out how a hosted phone system can optimize your business communications.

guy_on_phone.png

If you’re still using a traditional phone service to answer calls, you might feel like you’re tied to your office desk. Luckily, there is a better communication solution. A hosted telephone system, otherwise known as a virtual Private Branch Exchange (PBX), allows you to answer calls from anywhere, as well as reduces the amount of on-site hardware you need. Let’s look at:

What is a hosted phone system?

A hosted phone system is a Private Branch Exchange (PBX) that uses Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Hosted in an off-site data center, rather than on-site, this IP phone system works over the internet. You can easily make inbound and outbound calls in or outside the office.

A good hosted phone system should include all the advanced features your business needs, like voicemail and faxing, without the need for expensive or bulky equipment required of on-premise systems. When it comes to choosing the right hosted PBX for you, there are two options. They are:

Cloud phone systems

A cloud PBX allows you to connect with a VoIP data center virtually over the internet. Every user has a login and is registered with a SIP server. The system comes with the phone features your business needs, like voicemail and video conferencing. It is the easiest hosted PBX system to manage.

A virtual PBX goes from:

  1. Your device (softphone, desk phone, computer, etc.)
  2. Through the internet
  3. To your VoIP provider
  4. Then, finally, to the receiver

PBX SIP trunking

These hosted solutions allow you to keep your existing on-premise PBX. However, Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunking also allows you to send business communications over the internet. SIP trunks are virtual phone lines that utilize packet switching. This breaks down your telecommunications into data packets that are then reconverted back into audio data.

PBX SIP trunking goes from:

  1. Your desk phone
  2. To an on-premise IP-PBX
  3. Through the internet
  4. To your VoIP provider
  5. Then finally to your recipient

How does a hosted VoIP solution work?

If you are new to using a VoIP system, it may seem a little high-tech. Don’t worry - when you break it down, it’s actually quite simple. A hosted telephony service uses voice over internet protocol (VoIP) and cloud technology to connect you to a Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). A VoIP is simply sending call data over the internet instead of physical wires, while a PSTN is your traditional phone network.

The biggest benefit of this is that you no longer have to be connected to a physical telephone system. If you choose a strictly cloud phone system, you need very little to make it functional. You will require:

  • A stable internet connection
  • A device that has a speaker and microphone
  • A host (i.e. a VoIP provider)

The benefits of a hosted phone system

With our world connected to the internet in so many ways, it isn’t that far of a stretch to believe your phone system could benefit from a little connectivity. These days, even your oven may have an app, so why not your business phone solution?

The fact is that cloud-based business solutions have key benefits that are hard to pass up for modern businesses. Take a look at the table and the descriptions below to see how you can take advantage of all hosted phone systems have to offer.

FeatureHosted phone systemsTraditional phone systems
InstallationThe entire process is online and supported by your provider.The process is long, complex, and expensive. It also usually involves specialist help at a cost.
ScalabilityEasy to add or remove lines. Requires little more than a push of a few buttons.Difficult and costly. You need to physically add lines to your system, which requires equipment, labor, time, and expensive copper wires.
CostAffordable for small businesses and large corporations.More expensive for businesses of all sizes. You need equipment, maintenance, and often higher cost per line.
SecurityThese providers often have extra levels of VoIP security provided by modern internet tech.This onsite phone system is often prone to social engineering (hackers imitate your phone provider). This can lead to data breaches.
Call qualityIf your bandwidth is sufficient, your call quality will be better than traditional PBX.Call quality is lower for traditional phone systems. However, it can be better if your internet connection is poor.
FlexibilityBreak free of the desk phone. Hosted phone systems allow you to make calls anytime from anywhere.Traditional phone systems are slaves to the phone lines. You need to be in the office - or rely on call forwarding - in order to answer the phone.

Simple installation

The most daunting aspect of implementing a new phone system is the installation process. We understand the hesitation. Traditional phone systems can involve long, complex, and expensive installation processes. Implementing old-school PBX systems come with high upfront costs due to the need for expensive equipment.

However, with an IP PBX, the set-up can occur entirely online. You can keep your own devices or use a softphone (like your mobile device or computer). As long as you have good internet and a decent router, the setup of cloud-based phones happens almost entirely online. Having an easily managed hosted system frees up your IT staff to work on keeping your other business tech running and functional.

Easy scalability

Running a business is a dynamic process and your phone system should be able to change with it. Adding lines to accommodate growth is easy with a hosted PBX. This makes it easy to add lines if you expect an influx of calls because of a new campaign or product launch. After the launch or campaign is over, you can just as easily remove those lines.

This ensures that you are never paying for more than you need. You can rest easy knowing that your phone service can always grow with you.

Traditional phone systems make it difficult to add or remove lines from your service. New lines often require time-consuming and costly installations. That means you have to anticipate the long-term growth potential of your business from the start.

Cost-efficient

Tied to scalability, VoIP phone systems are cost-saving. Because you are never paying for more than you need, you will never waste a penny of your precious resources. And, because the process happens entirely online, you don’t have to pay for expensive installations or maintenance. This all helps improve your business’s bottom line.

Hosted PBX phone systems usually offer transparent pricing that comes with a clear monthly cost. You may also be able to keep your existing equipment which will save your business during installation and throughout the use of your new business VoIP system.

Secure

Data breaches can be both monetarily costly and impact your brand’s trustworthiness. Unlike traditional communications systems, hosted PBX systems are protected by firewalls and other types of encryption to keep your data secure. Plus, most business VoIP providers that have a decent reputation use strong identity management tools.

Superior call quality

Calls over the internet have the potential of existing in HD. The voice quality over the internet is typically better because, with the lack of phone lines, it has a lesser chance for interference. However, there is a chance of latency if your internet quality isn’t sufficient.

Make sure you have an internet speed of at least 100 Kbps. Most internet service providers (ISP) can provide at least 10 Mbps. Make sure to check your speeds before switching and check with your ISP to see if you need an equipment upgrade, or if you need to change providers.

Work from anywhere

Remote working provides employees with the freedom to work from anywhere in the globe. However, before VoIP gained popularity, companies either needed to pay for individual cell phone plans or have employees give out their personal phone numbers.

Now, with virtual phone systems, you can make calls from:

  • Softphones (a desktop or mobile app)
  • Desk phones (Using an adapter, or investing in IP phones)
  • Cell phones or other mobile devices
  • VoIP handsets

This means that remote workers have the freedom to work from their desks and then easily take their mobile devices to make calls from home with the same number. We are no longer imprisoned by our desk phones. Even if we are expecting an important call, we can live our lives anxiety-free knowing that our cell phones will ring.

Part of a great unified communications strategy

Great VoIP providers offer other UCaSS features along with their voice calling. A unified communications solution allows you to communicate internally and externally using multiple methods with a single tool.

This includes:

  • Team messaging
  • SMS messaging
  • Voice calling
  • Conference calling and Video conferencing

Hosted business phone system features

In order to get the most from the benefits of a hosted solution, there are some features you should be on the lookout for. These include:

Video Conferencing

Because more companies than ever are switching to a more remote workforce, video conferencing has become a staple in the modern workplace. In order to get the most out of your unified communications strategy, make sure to look for providers that include video conferencing in their VoIP services. This allows you to hold online meetings so you never miss an opportunity to connect with your team.

Voicemail transcription

While voicemail is a standard in VoIP services, you should also look for a provider that offers voicemail to email transcription. If you receive a high volume of voicemails, listening to all of them and extracting relevant information can be unnecessarily time-consuming. However, if these emails were transcribed into a text and sent to your email, you could go through them efficiently and log them accordingly with a click of a button.

Call recording

If you have a call center or provide customer support, call recording is a vital tool to provide exceptional service. Recording calls can also be useful for audio or video conference calls. You can go back to your recordings and take minutes or review something that was discussed.

When you record calls, you can provide better employee onboarding, ongoing training, and pinpoint any patterns that are hurting the customer experience. This will help improve your overall customer satisfaction which will lead to better loyalty which will benefit your bottom line.

Auto attendants

Auto attendants receive phone calls for you to provide superior call routing. Auto attendants provide customers with a friendly greeting then give them options in order to best direct their call. It can even supply them with automated self-service information so they don’t have to wait for an available agent. Having an auto attendant allows you to not have an administrative specialist spend their day answering calls. They can spend time on other things that will drive sales

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What should I look for in a VoIP provider?

You should look for a VoIP provider that provides all the features you need at an affordable cost. There are a lot of options available, so don’t assume that the most expensive option is automatically the best. You want a provider that doesn’t have any surprise monthly fees or charges for the features that should be standard.

Consider what you need for your business and make sure that your provider meets those needs with value and transparency. You also need to make sure they include unified messaging and other features that promote efficiency in your company.

Can I keep my existing business phones if I switch to a hosted PBX?

Yes! If you are using your old desk phones you may need an Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA). ATAs allow you to make calls over the internet with a traditional phone. If you decide just to use mobile devices, you can use an app available on iOS and Android app stores.

Is 8x8 a hosted PBX?

We are a hosted PBX! We provide you with high call quality and reliability over the internet. We also provide you with our:

  • Mobile app
  • Deployment specialists
  • IT experts

All of this allows you to implement and use our cloud phone system with a high level of confidence. The functionality of our systems will allow you to make the most out of your unified communications.

Conclusion

Using a virtual phone system allows you to make your business’s telecommunications as dynamic as you are. You can benefit from both its advanced calling features and the cost-savings that you will experience from just making the switch.

If you want to learn more about our virtual PBX system, have a chat with our sales team or schedule your meeting today.