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If your business is like most, utilizing cost-effective, world-class communication technologies is a priority. Hosted private branch exchange (hosted PBX) is one such technology that could help you save money. Hosted PBX is also frequently referred to alongside unified communications as a service (UCaaS) and improves mobility and voice quality as well as offers more advanced communication features such as integration with your CRM or ERP software.
Despite the advantages that make hosted PBX and UCaaS so popular, they aren’t necessarily the right fit for every organization. Some businesses fare well with an on-premise branch exchange. How do you know if hosted PBX services are right for you? Consider the following factors:
Startup costs. Hosted PBX, by nature, has lower initial startup costs, as your business doesn’t need to purchase the hardware or equipment necessary for an on-premise phone system. In fact, the majority of companies that have implemented hosted PBX have found it is 70% cheaper at the onset than on-premises PBX.
Internet connectivity. Calls that traverse the public internet from your connection to that of your hosted PBX provider do not guarantee Quality of Service (QoS). However, some providers of hosted PBX and UCaaS services also provide Internet access. Buying both services from the same provider can actually improve the voice quality beyond that of an on-premise PBX via high-definition voice technologies. Select a provider of hosted PBX that also provides a managed Internet service.
Long distance calling. Does your business make a significant number of long distance or international calls? While there are traditional phone vendors that are able to offer decent pricing for long distance, hosted PBX can potentially save you up to 90% over analog service. Businesses that don’t require a great deal of long distance will still see cost savings up front, but those savings won’t be as dramatic.
Software Integration. If your company can benefit from a phone system integrated into the software it uses every day (CRM or ERP) to initiate screen-pops, log, organize, or record calls, hosted PBX should be the first choice. Hosted PBX holds a distinct advantage in this area: as technology develops, so too will the capability of your phone service. Seven years from now, hosted PBX services will still be current, with features that haven’t been thought of today. Seven years from now, an on-premises PBX may be end of life, or end of support.
Scalability of phone lines. Some companies experience seasonal fluctuation in staff, or are impacted by various factors that cause call volume to drop or spike rapidly. If your business fits that description, hosted PBX gives you the ability to scale the number of phone lines quickly, which is a distinct advantage over analog service.
In-house IT staff. Not every business has an internal IT staff that has the expertise in telephony to keep a system running effectively. Some companies also have small IT departments that simply don’t have the resources to keep up with day-to-day IT needs while maintaining a phone system. If any of that sounds familiar to you, hosted PBX is a strong fit for your organization.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all phone system, businesses that would benefit from scalability, the expertise that comes with a hosted solution, and cost savings on the initial investment are a good match for hosted PBX. Considering making the switch? Contact us at Access One today to discuss the needs of your unique business.