The office phone systems form the lifeline of any business as it connects the business with its suppliers, customers and the entire world. Phone systems form one of the simplest and easiest of ways to communicate within the organization and beyond it. It is crucial to choose the ideal phone system for your business failing which you would have to face operational and financial losses. It would require some planning and foreseeing things before making the ultimate choice.
The first step to choose the right phone system for small business is to create a staffing plan keeping in mind current and future requirements. This would involve checking the business plan and deciding the number of staff that would need a phone 3 to 4 years in the future. You may think of purchasing a basic two-line phone that supports maximum 5 staff members. However, when you employ more staff as your business grows, the phone would be rendered useless.
Next, you must consider the important features of the business phones you want in your organization. One thing to determine is whether you would employ a receptionist or an auto-attendant for responding and connecting to the staff members. Another thing to consider is whether your organization would needcall forwarding or conference calling. Another important thing is whether you would require voice mail feature. There are many other essential features, and you can create a list of them all. This would come of help when comparing different systems.
The geographic locations of your branches would have to be considered when choosing the office phone systems. When your organization is spread across different locations, you would need a phone system that is different from what you would have needed for a single office. It would require certain costly hardware at each of the locations, and if the locations are of different sizes, then the type of hardware required would have to match it.
Next, you would have to choose the telecommunications technology required in your organization. One popular system is the Private Branch Exchange or PBX system that places the telephone technology on a hardware for accepting phone lines from the utility. When someone calls your phone number, this system would route the call to the precise department or employee.
Another type of widely used phone systems technology is the Voice over Internet Protocol or voip phone systems. This involves the use of a central hardware with each of the handset acting as a mini-computer connected to the internet. It would be important to compare these two types of technologies before choosing the one that suits best to your business.
PBX systems are expensive and they are usually difficult to program. However, adding more handsets is an inexpensive job. Similarly, voip phone system are also ideal for spreading across different locations and they are easy to use. However, extension is a costly affair because the handsets are expensive. It would be required to consider your future staffing and branching planning for comparing these two systems before making the right choice.