VoIP is one of the latest technologies creating a buzz…
Business VoIP Advantages and Disadvantages
Before upgrading to VoIP from more traditional enterprise phone systems, businesses need to have a clear understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of business VoIP. No new technology is ever free from a few cons, no matter how small.
The same applies to VoIP even though the benefits far outweigh the negatives. Nevertheless the few drawbacks may be relevant to some business organizations and at the very least, enterprises should keep them in mind when implementing VoIP.
Business VoIP advantages
Business VoIP services provide seamless access to an organization’s phone system from any location, to all its employees. Sometimes users may be at home, working in remote locations or at the client’s office. VoIP allows such workers to use whatever instrument they have with the same work number, thus protecting their privacy as well as presenting a professional image to all callers.
Since VoIP is not tied to a particular location or ZIP code, not only does it eliminate long-distance charges for calls within the same office but it also means that the phone can be used from which location the employee is working from for the day.
Lower Cost of Maintenance
Business users of cloud VoIP services do not have to worry about maintenance, repairs or upgrades. It means that they do not have to hire consultants or full-time employees just to manage the phone system.
Even organizations that use on premise solutions with SIP trunks can reduce the hassle associated with maintaining two different networks as VoIP allows them to route phone calls over the same network they use for sending files or email.
Every company is looking to cut costs in an effort to remain profitable. VoIP allows companies to do just that by:
- Eliminating charges for calls between employees of the same company even if they are located in different offices.
- Lower cost per call, for both local and long-distance calling.
- Providing unlimited calling for a fixed monthly price depending on the plan opted for.
Integrate with Other Enterprise Applications
Companies have come to realize that keeping information in silos is wasting potential. This is why software and applications that freely share data have become more valuable than those that keep it locked away in a walled garden.
The same applies for the enterprise phone system. Many VoIP vendors are offering integration with enterprise applications such as CRM software to make it easier for employees to use and share data.
Improve Productivity and Response Time
VoIP offers many advanced features like visual voicemail, digital faxing and group inboxes that improves productivity over time. For instance, faxes can be sent in the same way as composing an email, removing the need to for user to go down to the fax machine to send or receive a fax.
Such features also eliminate the delay in responding to customer calls, support requests or other inquiries. Voicemails from customers for the marketing department can be routed to a group inbox to be answered by any employee who is available at the time.
Disadvantages of VoIP
The biggest disadvantages of VoIP is that organizations need a high-speed Internet connection at all times. If the Internet goes out for any reason, it will take the phone system down with it.
Most organizations have backup options for such scenarios but for now at least, companies which operate in locations without access to reliable Internet should not deploy VoIP in the first place.
Another drawback is that power is required for IP phones to work, which makes them less useful if disaster strikes. Organizations usually connect their phones to the power backup supply and mobile phones can be used until their battery runs out.
As we can see, these are not unsurmountable obstacles and many organizations have creative solutions for getting around them. On the whole, business VoIP is extremely advantages to any organization.
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