A VoIP phone number is fundamentally analogous to the other…
Will VoIP Disrupt your Existing Business?
Posted on: 2017-12-12 | Categories: VoIP Services
New technology is almost always disruptive to some existing system or the other – unless it opens up a new market or creates a new industry segment. Many inventions are not actually new but rather improvements on older generation technologies. However every now and then we have something truly radical and innovative and VoIP is one such technology.
VoIP has disrupted the telephony industry in many ways since it was first launched. Incumbents have found themselves scrambling to keep up with startups. Phone companies have lost enterprise customers to inexpensive and much more advanced VoIP systems. Businesses have a choice to deploy their own SIP-based PBX or purchase hosted services from an external vendor. Millions of consumers have replaced their landline phones with IP enabled boxes from Vonage or MagicJack.
Even mobile carriers have not escaped the onslaught of VoIP. Their voice revenue has declined over the last decade. The 3G and 4G networks that were supposed to offer them additional revenue streams have also enabled the rise of mobile VoIP applications. Today plans with unlimited voice calling minutes are no longer a luxury. But unlimited data plans certainly are. Many feel that this is only the beginning and VoIP will continue to grow and develop in the future.
With VoIP Disrupt Your Existing Business?
However that definition of disrupt is not what most businesses are looking at when thinking of switching to VoIP. Organizations are concerned that upgrading to a brand new technology will interfere with day to day functioning. Some VoIP deployment projects can span several months depending on the size and requirements of the business. How will this affect employees, customers and business partners? The vast majority of businesses continue to rely on voice calling as a central part of their communication. Even a disruption of a few hours can cause significant loss in terms of revenue, potential profits, sales and customer goodwill.
These concerns are valid especially if you don’t have firsthand knowledge of VoIP. Not everyone is familiar with the technology, modern VoIP systems, the requirements to run VoIP etc. Past experience has shown organizations that new technology is not always easy or cheap to implement. Fortunately VoIP is very different in this respect. If you take a closer look at the implementation process, you can see that VoIP will have a negligible impact on day-to-day operations while you make the switch behind the scenes.
Switching to VoIP – Training Users
A significant concern for organizations is training and awareness and this applies to any new technology. Lack of training has brought many a project to an abrupt end. After all, what is the point of a new system if no one knows how to use it? All the potential benefits and improvements come to naught if using it is too complicated or time consuming.
Luckily for us, VoIP does not change the user experience much. In fact it allows for greater flexibility and extends the use of business numbers. IP enabled phones look and feel the same as their analog counterparts with a few slight differences. The function buttons might be mapped to different features and the higher-end models can support advanced capabilities. But the experience of making and answering a call remains the same. You pick up the phone and punch the numbers in.
Most of the change goes on in the background. Online dashboards give you easy access to set up, configuration and general administrative tasks. You don’t need experts with specialized knowledge if you want to make changes on the fly. You can add features, users and even phone numbers in a few minutes.
Switching to VoIP – Porting Your Numbers
The other big concern is the actual phone numbers your business uses. Your business phone number appears in so many places that it’s hard to keep track. It’s printed on sales materials, displayed on your website, included in product manuals and is often on public display (billboards, storefronts, corporate letterhead etc.). Most businesses also use a range of numbers, not just one or two. Changing all those numbers will disrupt your business for some time, right? Wrong!
VoIP allows number porting i.e. the facility of bringing your numbers with you. Both consumers and enterprises can benefit from this feature. Number porting means the transfer of your numbers from one service provider to another. It means that you and your customers can continue to use the same number while taking advantage of the extra features that VoIP offers. There is no need to change any materials which have your corporate numbers on them. Another benefit is that your customers and other partners don’t have to remember to call new numbers. They don’t have to know something has changed at all.
VoIP makes it as easy as possible for your organization to switch. VoIP may have disrupted entire industries but it won’t interrupt your daily workflows!