The typical business phone system functions about 7-15 years. If your system is in that range, you have to consider end of life options. It’s important to stay educated about phone systems because manufactures eventually stop supporting older model systems. If your aging business phone system fails and you don’t have a backup plan, it can cause your company serious harm.
Replacing the Existing System
Since you can only keep an aging business phone system going so long, you have to consider what system you are going to move to next.
IP system manufacturers have begun to replace traditional systems for a number of reasons. IP systems offer:
- More/better features
- Better integration with third party applications
- Simpler moves, adds, and changes
- Presence management and unified communications options
- More cost-effective carrier options
An IP business phone system still represents a significant investment however. Similar to a traditional system, you still have to pick a platform to fit with your specific business needs. As stated above, there are numerous benefits to switching to an IP system, but it is expensive. Therefore, you should consult with an IP telephony expert ahead of time so that when your aging business phone system is no longer functional, you won’t have to start from scratch.
Move to a Hosted PBX Platform
Instead of a brand-new IP system, you could also opt for a hosted system. While a hosted system functions in many ways like a normal business phone system, it is much different; rather than taking up physical space in your office, it resides in the cloud.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of a Hosted system is the cost advantage. Hosted PBX usually charges by the user, along with long distance calling and phone numbers at a flat fee.
Hosted PBX isn’t great for some businesses however, and (as with IP systems) you should consult with an expert prior to making any decisions.