Original Post by Melissa Coen
By now, the majority of companies have implemented some kind of hosted service, whether it be cloud storage (saving your data on someone else’s servers), SaaS (Software as a Service) like an Adobe CS subscription, or a hosted voice system (a business-class phone system that runs using software and equipment from a service provider).
In this last scenario, organizations pay a monthly service rate to obtain a full-service phone system, often bundled with advanced unified communications features that run on secure servers in the provider’s data center. Instead of requiring local IT support to maintain and upgrade the on-premises phone system, the majority of maintenance-related work is typically handled by the cloud service provider. This alone is enough of a reason for today’s enterprises to deploy hosted voice solutions; however, this is only one of many reasons to choose cloud voice services for your business.
1. Reduce the Burden on Your IT Staff
Along with reducing your organization’s necessary voice support needs, enterprise hosted voice solutions free up your IT employees from daily maintenance tasks so that they can instead focus on ways to help the enterprise increase profitability. Don’t underestimate the benefit of this reason, as IT members can finally have the time to implement tools for increased efficiency and better manageability, so that each employee can maximize their productivity, individually as well as part of a team.
2. Scale with Ease and Quickly Access New Features
Another reason to select a hosted voice solution is for its flexibility and scalability. As your company expands or reduces its workforce, an enterprise voice system hosted in the cloud allows you to make quick adds, changes, and removals to your system – saving time and money on maintenance costs and additional fees.
It’s easy to add features such as mobile twinning (forwarding calls from your desk phone to your mobile phone) and voicemail-to-email accessibility (allowing users access to voicemails via their email clients) with a hosted voice solution. In addition, most of these solutions provide a simple, easy-to-use interface for user maintenance.
3. Connect Your Remote Workforce
Enterprise hosted voice solutions also make it easy for remote workers to stay connected. These services – like VoiceMaxx and VoiceMaxx CE from West – allow users to make phone calls from home, remote offices, or while travelling, as if they were sitting in the home office.
Capabilities like Mobile Connect can allow users to even transfer meetings and conference calls from softphones or desk phones to a mobile device. Moreover, each user is empowered with the ability to manage their own call settings, which can include personal conferencing, call routing, directory access, and so much more.
4. Adopt a Budget-friendly Cost Model
As so many IT budgets are getting cut, hosted voice services fit easily into the company financial plan. It offers an operating expense model versus a capital model, so that accounts payable can be reduced each month. Furthermore, as aging on-premises PBX systems require more maintenance, repairs, modifications, and add-ons, the advantages of a hosted voice system become all the more apparent.
Because the maintenance burden is on the hosted service provider, your company’s systems are kept current with the latest hardware, firmware, and software patches and upgrades. It’s reassuring to know that your system continues to stay up-to-date, regardless of the age of your contract.
5. Have Peace of Mind with Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Options
And along with continual updates, a hosted voice solution will offer redundancy and business continuity that can’t be found in a single PBX environment. Because of the high cost of on-site PBX systems, very few companies are purchasing multiple devices to guard against disasters. However, with an enterprise hosted voice system, systems are mirrored and continuously backed up, so that even in a disaster, calls can be forwarded to an alternate number and your systems settings are always intact.
6. Integration with other Business Tools and Platforms
Another great reason to choose an enterprise hosted voice solution is because of all of the expanded features and integration capabilities. For instance, VoiceMaxx and VoiceMaxx CE can work with West’s cloud contact center services to provide a scalable and comprehensive voice and contact center solution.
Adding contact center software gives your company call center features like skills-based call routing, CRM integration, call monitoring and recording, dynamic scripting, predictive dialing, and even PCI-compliant call recording, if required. With the right tools in place, your enterprise sets the stage for increased customer interaction and improved customer satisfaction.
7. Be Productive with More Robust Collaboration
Most of today’s employees that operate out of an office setting rely on at least one collaboration tool for their daily tasks and responsibilities. Oftentimes there are several tools in use. The reason this topic is mentioned is that hosted voice solutions can be expanded to offer unified communications features like Cisco Jabber and Microsoft Skype for Business for instant messaging, instant meeting, file sharing, and instant collaboration.
Employees will thank you time and time again for providing them with the tools to make their jobs easier and their work days more productive. OK, so maybe they won’t actually say ‘thank you’ but they will be thinking it!
8. Access Support Whenever You Need It
Finally, if you’ve ever been in the situation where you’ve inherited an on-premises phone system, but don’t actually know how to use it – you’re not alone. There are many IT and operations departments that don’t really understand the capabilities of their systems or have never received training on them due to attrition and time. With a hosted voice solution, training is always available and easy-to-use interface tools are provided from day one.
As features change, the service provider should offer multiple ways to educate your users on the system’s capabilities. So you’re never alone when it comes to figuring out how to maximize the features available in an enterprise hosted voice solution.