VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, might sound like something space-age, but trust me – it’s really straightforward! VoIP is simply phone service over the internet. Instead of using the classic method wherein a line is fed through your business from the outside, and your phone plugs into the connection, VoIP connects over your internet. (How about the thousands of businesses without phone service in America because of a downed Comcast line?) It works by transferring sound over your broadband internet connection. This has quite a few benefits for you and your business.
The number one benefit to switching over to VoIP definitely has to be cost. There are minimal upfront fees (provided you already have internet). Simply buy a VoIP capable phone, and hire someone to install it (unless you know how), sign up to a service, and you’re set. The monthly charges are substantially less than traditional phone service as well. Because VoIP operates over your broadband, your monthly usage charge is counted as data being used, instead of talking minutes. This allows for huge monthly savings on both long-distance and local calls.
Because VoIP operates over your internet connection, it is very easy for any employee or client to call in from anywhere. You can easily host teleconferences with clear reception regardless of where the attendees are located. Additionally, VoIP can integrate data from other sources into one convenient package. For example, when client X calls your business, you’re provided with client X’s name, number, account number, etc. Any information in your system about the client can be accessed through VoIP. This data can be combined and viewed on one single screen so you or your employees can easily view all info they need to. (Think of how much easier incoming sales calls will be!)
The same way that you can connect your mobile device to Wi-Fi from anywhere within range, so too can VoIP. Similar to how an employee can log into email from home, or work, they can with VoIP. Each user is assigned a dedicated number, with which they can access your work network from anywhere. No more staying at the office until 2am, to make that call to Tokyo. Now you can do so from the comfort of your home, if you so choose. VoIP software can also be easily installed on any mobile device or laptop with internet connectivity.
With VoIP, there is no limit to the number of people you can add. Unlike traditional phone services for business where you buy a plan to service X number of people. With VoIP, your only restriction is the amount of traffic your internet can handle. Provided you have a solid internet connection, then you shouldn’t see any problems with more users on your system. Additionally, any changes you need to make to your system can be made easily with VoIP. The options are almost limitless!
Concluding with all the other benefits to VoIP, collaboration fits in quite nicely. Because you can work from anywhere, can access the network with ease, can easily add more people, etc., VoIP is perfect for collaboration. It makes setting up sales calls, conference calls, or international calls a breeze.
The only downside to switching over to VoIP is deciding what to do with all the money you’ll save. (Ice cream party?). Talk to MicroAge today about how you can switch over to VoIP and start saving today!
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