Many businesses are leaving traditional business phone systems in favor of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol). VoIP, as opposed to legacy business phone systems, uses an Internet connection to place and receive calls. One of the biggest positives of VoIP is the cost savings. However, if your business is not aware of some of the VoIP requirements, implementation could be problematic. If you don’t do your homework ahead of time, you could be stuck with a service that doesn’t work well with your business. Below are some of the VoIP requirements you should be aware of.
One of the first VoIP requirements you must check is if your business’s internet connection can handle VoIP. The more calls you place, the more bandwidth you need to support the calls. If you don’t place a lot of calls, a slower connection is permissible. You also need to account for the amount of simultaneous calls occur at normal and peak usage times.
Another one of the VoIP requirements you should know is if your network is capable of supporting VoIP traffic in addition to what you already use it for. If you send a lot of large files, it may interrupt VoIP services. If so, you may need a separate network for VoIP traffic.
Size of your business (On Premises vs. Hosted Phone Systems)
The easiest way to discern on premises VoIP systems from a hosted business phone system is to think about where the location of your hardware. For an on premises system the hardware, as the name suggests, is located at your business. Hosted systems, on the other hand, connect directly through the Internet and the service provider maintains the hardware off-site.
Larger businesses may find that an on premises system is cheaper in the long run. However, if you are a smaller business and don’t want the expense of maintaining the hardware, a hosted solution would likely be better. However, it is important to know that the choice between an on premises system and a hosted system varies from business to business.
Many customers switching to VoIP worry about what happens to their phones during an outage. The best thing to do for a back up plan is to either set up a fail-over ahead of time or to call your carrier and have your lines forwarded when an outage occurs.