Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), or the ability to make and receive telephone calls using one’s Internet connection, is best-known for being a cost saver. A small to medium-sized business, for example, can easily save around 60% on the cost of actual phone calls, never mind not having to invest in expensive traditional telephone systems epitomised by the clunky PBX switchboard located at reception.
We hear so much about VoIP’s cost savings, we forget that the ability to save rands and cents is but one of this growing technology’s many pluses.
Let’s take a look at four lesser-known benefits of VoIP telephone systems, according to OTEL CEO, Rad Jankovic:
* VoIP enables productivity-boosting automation – VoIP makes automation so easy, we almost forget this is a real and tangible benefit of going the 087 route. VoIP systems can be easily configured to route calls to numbers without the need for an expensive switchboard – or expensive human intervention. Routing calls to mobile phones when out of the office enables the ultimate in productivity because it gives the impression of being in two places at once.
* VoIP means small firms can compete on an equal footing – The fact that VoIP systems now offer geographic numbers means that smaller firms can give clients the impression they have a local presence, or at least care about outlying regions. There’s nothing deceptive about this – it simply means the small guy can compete entirely based on product and service quality.
* VoIP is about as near to ‘going off the grid’ as you can get in telecoms – In South Africa today, it’s becoming clear that for a business to function properly all the time, it needs to investigate alternative suppliers, whether this relates to utilities, security or telecommunications. VoIP systems delivered by credible and independent telecoms firms that are motivated to deliver quality services and which are not hamstrung by legacy issues, are a firm’s best bet for remaining up and running while the competition is still trying to get an unmotivated incumbent’s call centre to pick up the phone.
* VoIP is scalable DIY telephony – Any business owner with a smattering of technical ability will find that VoIP systems are great because they don’t require a call to be logged with a service provider each time something small needs tweaking. It is easy to add numbers and phones to a VoIP system. This means that when new employees are hired, one can in as little as a few minutes, easily assign them a number and a handset with no fuss and with no outside intervention necessary.
“Cost savings are certainly not the only benefit of VoIP. They could be more accurately described as the cherry on the top of a whole range of benefits that together deliver the most compelling offering in business telecoms today,” concludes Jankovic.