VoIP vs. UCaaSWhich Communication System is Best for Your Business?
With many evolving into a hybrid workplace model, the need for systems beyond the basic phone line has increased. This has led many businesses to consider Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems and unified communications as a service (UCaaS) to foster strong communication among dispersed, remote employees.
What is VoIP?
VoIP has been around for decades and is a popular replacement for traditional phone systems in businesses of all sizes–and good reason. VoIP allows businesses to make calls over WiFi, which means that it has far more flexibility than physical phone lines. For instance, you can add and remove lines almost instantly. VoIP services can be in-house, hosted, or a bit of both. In-house VoIP services will incur a significant human resource cost for your company while cloud-based VoIP software services can be a lot more flexible and on the grand scale of things, be a cheaper option.
VoIP software providers can seamlessly scale up your operations when your company experiences a large influx of calls during seasonal times, perhaps and scale down once the required period has passed. This takes away the stress of your having to scale your process seasonally as the VoIP service provider will take care of it.
Most VoIP providers also offer mobile options that allow employees to connect with customers through a VoIP app that works on a smart device. The flexibility and mobility of VoIP are attracting many businesses to this type of communication system instead of a landline or office network phone system.
On top of that, VoIP is far less costly than a traditional phone system, especially if your business makes a lot of long-distance calls. To sweeten the deal, a lot of vendors offer add-ons like automatic call distribution (ACD), business text messaging, call forwarding, and interactive voice response (IVR) which make connecting with customers even easier. Using a VoIP service can help your company prioritize communication with customers and bring brand loyalty.
VoIP is also easily scalable if the vendor also offers UCaaS because this allows you to switch over to UCaaS if your business needs more services.
What is UCaaS?
While VoIP software can only cover your company’s voice services, UCaaS offers a much broader range of communication options: combining calls, video conferencing, chats, contact centers, and business and productivity apps into one centralized system. This makes managing communication, meetings, and projects across many locations or time zones much simpler and more efficient for remote companies.
Unified communications software comes with cloud-based software that can be accessed using apps as well. UCaaS can also foster a “bring your own device” work environment because employees can access everything they need from any device when everything resides on the cloud. Other benefits include:
- Increased worker productivity
- Decreased miscommunications or errors
- Better analytics
- Better data security
- Better customer experience
- Increase revenue growth due to the improvements in communications
With two excellent options, it can be hard to know which product will work best for your business. You can use the following questions as a guide to assess your needs and help you consider your options.
How many communication platforms is your business currently using?
If the answer is ‘several’, you may want to consider UCaaS. Having multiple vendors for the different communication tools used by your company can cause a lot of friction. For one thing, having all your communication go through one vendor makes troubleshooting easier. It also lowers your total cost of ownership. On top of that, using UCaaS increases security since all communications go through one platform. However, if your company rarely uses video conferencing or emails to reach out to customers, VoIP might work better.
Do your employees work from different locations?
If your business involves managing workers located in several locations, it would be helpful to use a UCaaS since it would afford your business the flexibility and communication needed to manage larger projects. It could also provide you with the flexibility to now have to conduct all business operations under one roof if it is more efficient to run them remotely.
What platforms do your clients prefer for communication?
Younger clients often prefer text channels to voice calls when it comes to communication. If your business serves clients who dislike voice calls, UCaaS would give them the option to communicate in a way that they are comfortable with. If, however, your consumers usually use voice calls to reach out, you may not need all the options UCaaS offers.
UCaaS is a good investment only if your company handles multiple communications channels or plans on expanding just the voice call options to include more mediums. It is important to listen to what your customers are saying and maintain the relevant communication channels for them to reach you.
While there is no clear answer to the general debate between VoIP and UCaaS, the right answer for you is the system that works best for your business. Phone-based businesses that rely on calling more than any other type of communication will probably find that they only need a VoIP system, and don’t need the additional services and frills of UCaaS while others need more services than a VoIP can offer.
If your business intends to grow shortly, it is best to integrate a unified communications tool and use the options that are needed at present. You can later add more features to your UCaaS as your business grows and the need for new communications channels becomes apparent. Unified communications using one software can centralize all of your company’s communications channels into one convenient solution.
We can recommend the best VoIP service providers as well as the best UCaaS providers on the market to make this decision easier. You can also compare different vendors to see how each vendor can address the unique needs of your business and do that at a budget that is right for you.
Like what you just read? At Wheelhouse, we are passionate about all things software, and our specialty is connecting software buyers to a solution that perfectly matches their needs. Please visit our VoIP software page for a complete list of all the solutions we have on offer.