Ideal Situation for Hosted VoIP
Want to know what is the ideal situation for opting for hosted VoIP for businesses? Maintaining multiple office locations can be a huge expense for a business. Leasing office space, building it out to suit a particular business need, and installing computer and telephone systems can be very expensive. Not to mention the fact that soon after installation, computer and communications equipment becomes outdated and obsolete. Any small business that needs a powerful and flexible communications system should consider the hosted VoIP option.
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Who can Benefit from a Hosted VoIP system?
For example, a small security system vendor that has a team of customer service and sales representatives would definitely benefit from the features of a hosted VoIP system. Where most of the operations of the business take place in the field, it makes better sense not to invest in brick-and-mortar office space. And there is no need to buy telecom and computer equipment when hosted VoIP can provide all of the needed technology.
Using auto attendant and call forwarding features, incoming calls can be directed to the right person, wherever they are. Calls can be transferred to mobile phones or customer phones so that installers and salespeople can stay in touch with customers.
How Does Hosted VoIP Work?
Hosted VoIP works by leveraging the same techniques and infrastructure that the internet uses for the distribution of information. Calls made using hosted VoIP are connected to the internet using the router. The router directs the data packet to the remotely hosted VoIP servers which process and manage the call. These hosted VoIP servers route and connect the call to its correct destination. All the same, steps are followed in the reverse order on the receiving end. For the hosted VoIP to work properly and efficiently, you require a stable internet connection with sufficient bandwidth and a secure IP network.
Features of Hosted VoIP
Hosted VoIP’s internet-powered technology offers much more besides standard phone features such as conference calls. While there is a wide range of features supported by VoIP, your exact selection depends on how much you pay and your provider. It is only wise to choose features that you will be using, so it is best to opt for a custom plan based on your unique business requirements. Some key hosted VoIP features are:
- Auto attendant
- Extension numbers and number changes
- Instant messaging
- Online fax services
- Sophisticated call management (inclusive of routing and screening calls)
- Unlimited calling
- Video conferencing
- Voice mail as well as voice mail to text or email
Security of Hosted VoIP
After installing hosted VoIP, within 2 to 13 days you can start using it. With the VoIP servers in place, calls undergo advanced encryption to provide high-level security to your text and audio conversations.
Hosted VoIP does not require special equipment and infrastructure, thus making it a far less expensive option than a non-hosted VoIP. Since calls are made over the internet, you will experience much cheaper or even totally free long-distance and international calls with hosted VoIP. You only need to pay the monthly or annual flat fee for the selected features that hosted VoIP offers, and no maintenance or support fees.
Hosted VoIP supports Unified Communications (UC)
Without hosted VoIP, your business cannot benefit from unified communications as these require the VoIP infrastructure. Therefore, having a hosted VoIP in place is key to integrating unified communications into your business. Unified communication or UC refers to a group of applications enabling real-time or non-real-time business-scale communication.
Technical Customer Support
Most hosted VoIP providers offer technical customer support and periodic maintenance as part of their VoIP package. This way, you save yourself from the worry of having to hire an IT specialist for repair services, as your provider takes care of such issues.
Suitable for Long-term Business Growth
Hosted VoIP systems are a cost-effective and efficient choice with a suite of useful features, making them a great investment for businesses. As hosted VoIP can support a remote employee base, they are great for scaling businesses, making them a popular choice in both the private and public sectors.
Multiple States or Regions
Businesses that operate in multiple states or regions can get even more benefits from hosted VoIP. Using special plans that offer toll-free and local numbers for direct dialing, the business can appear to be local to any desired area. Having sales and support teams able to operate in the field at customer sites, without having to "phone home" on a regular basis, is a big advantage for a small business.
Whenever employees travel often or offices need to relocate to support clients in another region, hosted VoIP provides the technology and services to make regular business activity continue without interruption. Imagine the hassle of having to set up and break down physical offices and equipment more than a few times a year. This activity alone could cost a business its entire budget. Using virtual offices and communications systems, any small business can operate anywhere and have its employees in any location.
The security system vendor in the example above might start out with a small region and a few sales and support representatives. After seeing some growth, expanding into other regions would be a simple process for hosted VoIP to handle. In fact, that expansion might only be possible through the use of hosted VoIP.
With hosted VoIP service, businesses can reach new target markets, expand their customer support capabilities, and easily change their infrastructure to meet new challenges. Rather than just providing a new way of handling business communications, hosted VoIP gives businesses a new way of operating in a global economy.