The FAQs of Converting to Business VoIP: How, When, and Why You Should Make the Switch

0 Comments 14 January 2015

Why convert to a modern VoIP office phone system? Mainly, to save copious amounts of money. VoIP phone service can help businesses save big on their phone bill each month. Nearly all VoIP plans come with unlimited local and long distance calling, and most plans come packed with free business features like voicemail, 3-way calling, and call forwarding, among others.

To help make the process of converting to a business VoIP system easier, here are some of the most commonly asked questions about business VoIP and some helpful answers for businesses looking to make the switch.

Will My Company Have to Replace Any Office Hardware to Get VoIP?

Most businesses can keep their current hardware when they convert to a business VoIP system, though upgrading to brand new IP hardware is often the better long-term investment.

Office Phones

Most businesses can keep their current phones, as long as they get adapters so that the traditional analog phones can translate analog signals into Internet signals. Of course, it’s always recommended that businesses upgrade to newer IP phones for the best sound quality.

In some cases, businesses that already own an in-house PBX (private branch exchange) can continue using it as long as the company buys a VoIP adapter for the PBX. However, it’s almost always better to invest in a modern IP PBX or hosted PBX. An IP PBX is an in-house PBX that simply uses the Internet to connect calls. A hosted PBX system is hosted and maintained off-site by the business VoIP provider.

Does It Matter That My Business Has Remote Workers?

VoIP phone service works perfectly for offices with remote workers. Virtual extensions can ring on most devices with Internet capabilities, including smartphones, laptops, and tablets.

Mobile VoIP

Many VoIP providers also offer mobile apps or virtual extensions for employee cell phones. Employees download the VoIP provider’s mobile app onto their smartphones to use the business telephone service no matter where they go. Mobile VoIP makes it easy to maintain consistent communication no matter where remote employees are located, as long as there’s an Internet signal.

What Do I Do About Faxing?

IP faxing is a cheap, eco-friendly alternative to traditional faxing, and is available as an add-on or separate plan from many VoIP providers. It’s also a mobile way to fax. Traditional fax machines must stay connected to cords in the wall and will only send paper faxes. With IP faxing, you can send and receive faxes from and to traditional fax machines, smartphones, computers, or tablets. Some business VoIP providers offer IP faxing by itself if you want to simply upgrade your fax machine instead of upgrading the whole office phone system.

What Can I Expect in the Actual Process of Switching to VoIP?

The actual process of switching to a VoIP system varies based on the provider you choose. Some providers offer DIY setup packages, and some providers may be able to send out a technician to help you switch out the analog software for VoIP software. Nearly all providers offer 24/7 support so that businesses are never without help.

How Much Does Business VoIP Cost?

Most VoIP providers charge around $20/month per extension. For instance, a hosted PBX solution costs around $20/month per extension. An in-house IP PBX system with a SIP trunk is a little cheaper, and runs for around $10/per port. IP faxing and IP video conferencing plans vary in price, depending on the VoIP provider.

Originally posted 2013-10-10 10:58:30.

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