5 Considerations to Make When Switching to a Cloud PBXDanielle Bucella
Cloud computing is the wave of the future, and inevitably, many technologies are moving to the cloud. For a myriad of reasons, it is appealing to switch to a system or product where data is stored and transferred over the Internet. This eliminates the need for users to purchase certain computers or hardware devices. VoIP technology is included in this migration. Initially, calls were routed by a physical on-site PBX, which could be costly, time-consuming, and sometimes inefficient (thus the transition to a cloud offering). The cloud PBX allows users to access the same capabilities and features they would normally receive from an on-premise PBX but eliminates the need for pricey equipment. Also, a VoIP provider will handle all of the routing services and support, instead of having in-house technical support/IT address this task.
While there are many attractive reasons and substantial benefits to switching to a cloud PBX, there are a few considerations that businesses must make if they have decided to switch from an on-premise PBX to the cloud.
Costs & Budgets
What is a business’ budget and what options will work within that? Cost is one of the big factors to assess when upgrading equipment and technology in an office. It is important to look at the different costs that will be associated with the cloud PBX solution, including setup and support costs. Also, businesses must decide if they are going to be upgrading phones or will need to purchase new compatible devices. While these expenditures must be part of the cost analysis, remember that initial start-up and/or equipment costs generally are a one-time expense.
Where are the cost savings? PBX phone saving studies show that cloud PBX systems can save companies up to 50% (in comparison to other PBX solutions). Cloud-based phone systems are known to have relatively limited upfront costs. Additionally, the need to install, maintain, reconfigure, and upkeep a premise-based PBX, which can lead to unforeseen future costs, is removed from the equation. Cloud solutions also have a tendency to have low set-up costs, call rates, and subscription fees. When completing a cost analysis, do not forget to include the monthly Internet service fee.
Business Needs & Feature Sets
What are the overall business and associate-level needs? It is imperative to assess whether or not the cloud solution comes with all the advanced features (or more) that an on-premise PBX would have. Ask if the solution has all the management capabilities needed, such as import/export of extensions, troubleshooting, and provisioning. Does the business rely on a third-party chat and collaboration program (Slack, Teams, etc.) or does the cloud PBX need to have a chat feature built-in? What security features are a must-have for an organization? It is not safe to merely assume that all cloud PBX offerings are the same, so feature needs should be outlined and then compared with feature sets.
Some of the top key features include:
- Business Features: Blacklist/Whitelist, Custom prompt, distinctive ringtone, music on hold, one-touch recording
- Call Features: Attended transfer, blind transfer, call detail records, call forwarding, call monitor, call parking, call routing, caller ID, conference, DND, queue, speed dial, SIP forking, video calls
- Management: Backup & restore, import/export extensions, multi-level user access, phone provisioning
Multi-Locations & Branch Offices
Does a business need a multi-location solution? If a business spans different geographical areas and is not contained in one location, it makes sense to gravitate towards a cloud PBX. Many cloud PBX options can connect employees on the opposite sides of the globe, offering all employees access to the exact same features. Easily utilize these options to transfer calls between different offices. One other consideration is to assess the cost of long distance calling, which may already be rolled into the package price.
Access on Mobile
One cannot ignore the fact that business extends outside of the four walls of the office. A quality cloud PBX solution will possess the capability to fully function on a mobile device. This is perfect for those employees who have home offices, telecommute occasionally, or even travel frequently. To ensure that this is possible, choosing a cloud PBX with a comprehensive mobile client is a must. In addition to calls being properly routed to mobile devices, a mobile client needs to offer full access to all features.
Internet & Networking Requirements
When setting up a cloud PBX system, determine whether or not the current Internet connection speed is high enough, both up and downstream. Also, check that all basic networking equipment is up-to-date (routers and switches). Ensuring a high level of call quality can be done by having a QoS-enabled Internet connection. Certain equipment, like an Edgewater router, can prioritize your traffic over data.
For the Solution Provider or Reseller
While you may not need to make these considerations since you’re in the role of seller, your customers still need to. It is imperative to understand your customer’s wants, needs, and current pain points to match them with the best product. Find out what a customer’s problem is, provide help them information on how to resolve this issue, and assist them in evaluating the alternatives. Understanding the process your customer is going through is going to ensure that you are helping them make the best purchase decision.
Before choosing the cloud PBX solution that is going to be an ideal fit for your customers, it is best to consult with a VoIP expert. They can work with you to determine what solutions will match with your customers’ needs. The team at 888VoIP specializes in everything VoIP, including on-premise, hosted, and cloud PBX solutions. Call the 888VoIP expert team now at 888-864-7786 for a personalized PBX consultation.
At the beginning of 2018, 888VoIP announced a partnership with Yeastar, a developer and manufacturer of PBX and gateway solutions. Yeastar offers an innovative Cloud PBX solution that is both flexible and scalable. The Yeastar Cloud PBX incorporates both the Yeastar Management Plane (YMP) and easy-to-deploy PBX instances, so it is easy to build up your own private-branded Cloud PBX. This solution is feature-rich, ensuring your customers will have access to the functions they need, and a powerful mobile client, the Linkus Mobile Client. Linkus offers full access to communication features on mobile phones. To learn more about the Yeastar Cloud PBX, speak with the cloud experts at CloudCo Partner, an affiliate-company of 888VoIP, at 855-715-8505. They will provide you with a walkthrough of the Yeastar product and assist you in signing up for a free trial.