Given the cost and resource advantages of cloud-based applications and platforms, many businesses are turning to cloud-based phone systems as viable solutions for communication. Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology refers to a series of transmission capabilities that make vocal communication over the Internet possible. Hosted Voice is a service that combines VoIP with a cloud-hosted Private Branch Exchange (PBX), creating a powerful business communication system. Hosted Voice offers businesses of all sizes the productivity and mobility features and benefits that are unparalleled by traditional phones.
Implementing a Hosted Voice system eliminates the pressures and costs of managing and maintaining a PBX, while giving your employees enterprise-grade features. In addition to commonplace features like voicemail, call waiting, toll-free numbers, and call forwarding, VoIP systems support visual voicemail (voicemail-to-email transcription), simultaneous and sequential ring, audio conferencing, auto attendant, and call recording.
Additional features like Find Me/Follow Me allow users to define how incoming calls are routed or forwarded to ensure that important calls are not missed. With mobility features, employees can make and receive calls on their cell phones using their VoIP business phone number and take advantage of the VoIP long-distance calling plan while working remotely, even from their mobile phone.
Reliability. A common fear about switching to VoIP is reliability. Business-grade voice platforms can achieve 99.999% availability, providing customers with the highest level of uptime. Many vendors offer intuitive portals for users and administrators. In case of a power outage or loss of Internet connectivity, voice administrators and employees can use their smart phone or any browser to manage call routing. Users can then make or take calls using a mobile device. Calls appear to originate from the VoIP number, and all calls are routed through the Hosted Voice interface.
Cost. VoIP is a winner when it comes to cost. With its subscription-based cost model, VoIP allows businesses to purchase only what they actually need, allowing them to allocate funds normally spent on traditional phone expenses to other aspects of their business. Whereas traditional phone packages require businesses to manage separate networks and hardware for voice and data, VoIP runs on the same network as data. This brings cost savings and streamlined management, while efficiently delivering reliable communications.
QoS: The Unsung Differentiator
Everyone that is considering VoIP should become familiar with the term Quality of Service (QoS). QoS defines the overall performance of a telephony network, specifically the level of performance experienced by voice system users. When considering VoIP services, it’s important to understand how a service provider manages QoS across their network, if and how voice traffic is prioritized, and how features compare. There’s no question that Hosted VoIP offers better mobility and productivity features than legacy phone systems.