The term VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, and — in simple terms — it refers to a system that routes voice calls over an internet connection, rather than through a conventional phone line or private branch exchange hosted on a company’s premises.
VoIP has a number of advantages over the conventional approach to voice communication, and as internet connectivity becomes increasingly ubiquitous, more and more businesses are making the switch to VoIP.
Let’s take a look at some of the key features that make VoIP so appealing, and how they can benefit almost any business.
1. VoIP Saves Money
Switching to VoIP can save almost any business money over the continued use of a conventional phone system. It’s especially true if your business places international calls on a regular basis.
VoIP termination rates (the cost to call abroad) are generally extremely competitive. By switching to VoIP, your business stands to save money.
But call rates aren’t the only expense that a VoIP system can help to minimize.
Legacy hosted PBX systems often require the purchase or leasing of expensive hardware and the frequent installation of new lines — all of which adds up to more expenses for your business.
With VoIP, installation costs are minimal. In most cases, the system can plug directly in to your existing internet infrastructure.
Related: 5 Reasons Landlines Should Die Off
2. VoIP is Mobile
VoIP functionality needn’t be restricted solely to in-office use. There are a range of mobile applications available which enable your employees to call using VoIP without any special hardware.
In short – if they’re able to connect to the internet, they’ll be able to make voice calls.
It makes a huge impact on your mobility and productivity, making your team members easily contactable even when on the road. In many cases, employees will be able to retain a single number, regardless of travel or moves from one office to another.
For you, that means less wasted time and energy updating contact details or chasing outdated contacts.
Related: 5 Benefits of Cloud Mobility
3. Call Quality
For the most part VoIP call quality is excellent — crystal clear and with no delay or distortion. Call quality can suffer in VoIP systems; it’s usually due to issues surrounding internet connectivity and system setup.
A professional VoIP service provider will advise you on the requirements necessary to take advantage of excellent internet phone call quality in your business. A properly setup and maintained VoIP system has notable advantages in terms of quality over conventional systems.
4. More Features
Although VoIP is primarily used to provide voice telephony, it also enables a host of other features. Many users are surprised by the versatility and functionality of VoIP. As well as enhancements on standard phone functions (such as the ability to put callers on hold or transfer calls), VoIP systems also offer the ability to have voice messages sent to email inboxes, route calls intelligently, call multiple phones at once until someone picks up, or organize group calls.
Need more reasons? All of these features are accessible in an intuitive and clear way — which means that your employees can get on with using them to increase productivity without having to spend a lot of time learning a whole new skill set first.
5. VoIP Scales Well
If your business currently uses a legacy system, you’ll already be familiar with some of the problems inherent in scaling up. With a limited number of channels the process of onboarding new employees can quickly become complicated and expensive. It often results in the need to use clumsy workarounds – like sharing phone sets between users.
VoIP makes it easy and inexpensive to add an additional user. Additionally, you can scale your system without the expensive installation of new lines. In other words, VoIP systems can grow comfortably alongside your business, no matter what your size.
6. VoIP Is Easily Repaired
Problems with conventional systems are often hardware related and can sometimes take days or even weeks to solve. Although VoIP (like any system) is by no means perfect, problems can often be resolved remotely and in a matter of minutes.
On top of that, the best VoIP service providers offer proactive network monitoring and maintenance to ensure that downtime is kept to an absolute minimum.
7. VoIP Integrates Well
Conventional phone systems can be incredibly difficult to integrate with other systems in your business. VoIP doesn’t suffer from this issue. You can easily record voice calls and have them accessible in customer records, route voicemails to email or initiate calls from a variety of different programs.
It’s also relatively simple to integrate analytics to your internet phone system. Not only will the adoption of VoIP instantly increase productivity, but you’ll then be able to monitor and refine your processes for further gains in productivity and customer service over time.
VoIP Benefits for You, Too
VoIP offers a range of benefits to business users and can help your company save money while also hugely increasing efficiency. If you’re still wrestling with a conventional phone system, perhaps it’s time to consider the alternative; VoIP can revolutionize efficiency, connectivity and productivity in your office.