Archive for the ‘VoIP’ Category


Say Goodbye to Background Noise with Polycom’s Acoustic Fence Technology

At Nextiva our goal is to simplify business communication, and one of our long-time partners, Polycom, shares this goal. The well-known business phone manufacturer has released revolutionary new software for their Polycom VVX series phones that change the way Nextiva customers who use Polycom phones communicate.

Polycom’s UC Software 5.3 release, which Nextiva was the first provider to support, features the new Acoustic Fence technology. What exactly is Polycom’s Acoustic Fence you may ask?  With this technology, surrounding audio is evaluated when you’re on a call using your Polycom VVX series phone, and the phone performs noise cancellation for the person on the other end so only your beautiful voice is heard. In order to take advantage of this technology, you must be using a handset or headset and be within proximity of your phone.

Call centers, busy office environments, restaurants, retail stores, medical offices, law firms, and a variety of other industries benefit from this technology. No ones likes constantly asking the person on the other end of the call to repeat themselves because the background noise is drowning out the conversation. A live band could perform in your office and the caller on the other end of the phone never has to know.

Eliminating background noise for callers has numerous benefits, including:

  • Reduce customer frustration: The person on the other end of the call hears your response the first time, rather than having to constantly ask you to repeat yourself because they can’t “hear you.”
  • Reduce call times: For call centers and busy offices reducing call time is vital to reducing wait times and assisting callers in a timely manner.
  • Increase productivity: Repeating yourself is a time suck, not to mention it can be frustrating. Having a conversation without constant interruption because of background noise and needing to repeat information increases ones productivity so they can accomplish the task at hand quicker. 

Want to see Polycom’s Acoustic Fence technology in action? Check out the video below featuring the legendary Sexy Sax Man. 

To learn more about Nextiva's cloud-based phone system, visit www.nextiva.com


What is Amazing Service? We’re Raising the Customer Service Standard

7-14 Amazing Service smallAt Nextiva, we believe that standard customer service isn't good enough. Any business can deliver a customer experience that leaves the customer satisfied but not “wowed”. We are raising the standard of what customer service should be by delivering Amazing Service. This principle is at the heart of everything we do. It drives every decision, product innovation and customer interaction at Nextiva.

So what does Amazing Service mean for the businesses that rely on us for their communication needs?

100% U.S.-based Support

Outsourcing, especially when it comes to our support team, is not part of Nextiva’s business model. Every member of our support team is located at our headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona.

When a customer joins Nextiva, their Account Executive is sitting just a few feet away from the Onboarding team that will set up their phone system and the support team that will assist with any questions or issues that may arise during their time with Nextiva. This makes for efficient and effective internal communication so our customers can get the help they need as quickly as possible.

No Customer Service or Sales Scripts

We believe in letting each team members’ personality shine through. You don’t want to talk to a robot, you want to talk to a person you can connect with.

We focus on hiring team members who exhibit a positive attitude, are driven and passionate about helping others. Our team is our greatest asset, and they are what set Nextiva apart from other communications providers. We focus on fostering a fun and positive work environment because we feel this directly correlates to the service you receive as our customer.

Advocates for Your Business

Our customers are not just a number at Nextiva. They trust us to deliver reliable service and we take our job seriously. Account Executives, Technical Specialists, Account Managers, and everyone at Nextiva are here to help your business succeed. We don’t believe in saying “We can’t do that,” but instead not giving up until a solution is found and the issue is completely resolved. We're dedicated!

Each Business is Unique – Treat Them That Way

We don’t believe in the one-size-fits-all mentality. We want to provide the communication solution that best fits our customers’ business needs. We tailor our plans and feature offerings to fit each customer’s business needs and pain points. Personalization is key and each team member takes this approach when interacting with the businesses we serve, from the first call with an Account Executive to the last support interaction.

What does Amazing Service mean to you? 


Four Key Cloud Communications Trends

Cloud communications solutions are becoming increasingly popular among businesses, and implementing these technologies in your business will help you gain a competitive advantage.  

Below are four key trends you need to know about cloud communications that are changing the way businesses communicate, operate, grow, and succeed.

Decrease in Cost

With flat monthly fees, unlimited calling and enhanced features, switching to a cloud-based phone system will save your business significant operational costs while boosting your team's productivity. A recent article by the Huffington Post stated, “Hosted VoIP is rapidly being adopted by many businesses who seek to avoid the excess costs and complexities of an on premise phone service solution.”

In addition to phone service, there are a variety of cloud-based communication, collaboration and relationship management tools that will take your business to the next level.  As these technologies and features have moved to the cloud, they are now available at a fraction of the cost because expensive infrastructure, equipment and on-site IT staff to manage the systems are no longer necessary. The total cost of ownership of cloud-based tools is significantly less than traditional systems. With the decrease in price of these technologies and the increase in features, small and medium size businesses are able to grow at an unprecedented rate. 

Mobility is Key

The concept of mobility isn’t new, but its importance to business success is now undeniable. It is essential for business professionals to have the ability to conduct business from anywhere, and cloud communications and collaborations systems provide the flexibility they need. Just as today’s consumers want to be able to make a bank deposit while sitting on the beach, today’s workforce needs to be able to work while waiting for a flight, sitting in a coffee shop between meetings, or from home while being as productive as they are in the office.

Cloud communications allow remote team members to stay connected and manage their phone system, files and meetings from web-based interfaces that are accessible from anywhere. Businesses will increase team productivity significantly by investing in cloud-based technologies that promote mobility and a flexible work environment.

Cloud-Based File Backup and Storage

You can’t afford to lose important business files or not be able to access them when the need arises. Backing up and storing your files in the cloud makes it easy to access files from anywhere, share them with colleagues, and collaborate on projects with remote workers. Backing up your files to the cloud also ensures your business doesn’t miss a beat in the event of a natural disaster or internal network issue.

Companies of All Sizes are Adopting Unified Communications Solutions

Unified cloud communications benefits companies of all sizes and industries. There isn’t a business out there that wouldn’t like to increase team productivity and efficiency. Those two ingredients, along with hard work and dedication, are what create and grow successful businesses. The move to cloud-based systems allows large enterprises to retire their outdated and costly equipment, and allows small businesses to implement technologies that were previously unattainable.

Has your business thought about moving to the cloud?


Nextiva Customer Success Story: Charlotte Geek

At Nextiva, our goal is to simplify business communication so you can focus on the important stuff, such as running your business. Our products and features are designed with the busy professional who is always on the go in mind. Our cloud-based phone system allows users to increase their productivity, flexibility and mobility with the NextOS platform. We are excited to introduce you to Charlotte Geek, one of the businesses we serve that takes full advantage of our mobility features.

North Carolina-based Charlotte Geek is an IT collective made up of IT professionals who have been permitted by their current employers to assist other small businesses in the area with IT skills that they do not currently have. Paying a monthly fee for an IT consultant is not realistic for many small businesses, especially those that only need assistance with technology-related questions or issues a few times a month. Charlotte Geek provides these local businesses with an affordable resource that is essential to their business success. IT professionals that are a part of the collective are scattered throughout the city and work on an as-needed basis for Charlotte Geek. These IT professionals are often on location and needed a phone system that they could access from anywhere so they didn’t have to provide multiple numbers to their clients.

Daniel Pentecost, Founder of Charlotte Geek, and his team were in need of a phone system that provided them with all of the traditional features of a business phone system, but allowed them to access their phone while out in the field. Additionally, they wanted to have the ability to easily transfer calls from their desk phone to their cell phone, without the client they were currently speaking with knowing as they are frequently running from one location to the next.

The NextOS platform, and specifically the Nextiva App, provides Charlotte Geek with numerous business benefits, including:

  • Mobility: Charlotte Geek IT professionals are always on the go, and they need to have the ability to easily transfer a call, put a client on hold, or instant message a colleague, which is all made possible by the Nextiva App.
  • HD Voice: Crystal clear voice quality is essential for Charlotte Geek. The team is often on the road running between client appointments, and the HD Voice feature builds trust with their clients and shows them that they are a professional company that will take care of their IT needs.
  • Amazing Service: Charlotte Geek knows they can count on Nextiva to make updates to their account quickly so they don’t experience service interruptions, whcih are common with traditional phone providers.

When discussing the importance of Charlotte Geek’s phone system, Daniel said, “A phone is the lifeline of our business, and I absolutely consider Nextiva to be that lifeline for us.”

Meet Daniel and hear his story in the video below:  


Nextiva Customer Success Story: Defy Gravity

We love visiting the businesses we serve and learning more about their business and how they use their phone system. On a recent trip to North Carolina, we had the pleasure of visiting Defy Gravity, an indoor trampoline park based in Charlotte, North Carolina, with other locations throughout the state. With 10,000 square feet of open jump space, a dodge ball court, basketball hoops, and foam pits, it is an exciting activity park that all ages enjoy. They recently added a ninja course featuring 13 obstacles that young and old can experience and conquer. The trampoline park also hosts a variety of parties and events, from birthdays to company team builders.

The company had previously tried another VoIP provider at their other locations, but was dissatisfied and frustrated with the customer service they received. When opening their Charlotte location, they knew they wanted to go with a different provider and did extensive research, which led them to Nextiva. From their first call with an Account Executive to setting up their system and making adjustments along the way, Nextiva’s team has been there for them every step of the way.

Delinda Hernandez, General Manager, told us about how the trampoline park uses Nextiva’s cloud phone service to communicate with customers and grow their business. Defy Gravity has received multiple benefits from switching to Nextiva, including:

  • Instant Updates: Changes to Defy Gravity’s phone system can be done with one phone call to Nextiva’s Amazing Support team. Also, Nextiva handles all maintenance and service upgrades to their phone system at no additional charge.
  • Reliable customer support: Nextiva’s support team is dedicated to resolving any issues that arise and will stay on the phone until they confirm that everything is working correctly.
  • Scales with business growth: Defy Gravity plans to add more parks in the future, and Nextiva’s cloud-based platform allows them to add users and additional locations to their Nextiva account in a matter of minutes.

Meet Delinda and hear her story in the video below: 

 


Call Forwarding: Route Your Calls However You’d Like

Mature business woman talking with mobile phone on urban outdoors.You’ve probably experienced this scenario before: you’re calling a business and their phone rings, and rings, and rings. This causes you frustration and valuable time is wasted. This business did not have an essential tool in their business communication arsenal—call forwarding.

While the concept of call forwarding is pretty straightforward and basic, it can revolutionize your business. Reduce your customers and colleagues frustration and wait times by automatically redirecting, or forwarding, calls to a third party destination, such as a phone number or extension based on circumstances you specify.

Do you want a call to forward to your cell phone if you don’t answer your desk phone after three rings? Do you want to forward all calls to a specific number after your business is closed for the day? If you answered yes, then your business needs call forwarding.

Benefits of Call Forwarding:

  • Reduce customer frustration and unnecessary waiting
  • Ensure important customer calls are being answered
  • Redirect calls based on circumstances you specify
  • Receive calls on a different device if you’re away from your desk
  • And more!

The call forwarding feature is included in all of our Nextiva Office plans and is easy to manage in our customer portal. You can set specific schedules, circumstances and forwarding rules based on your business needs. If you don’t already use Nextiva for your business communication needs, give us a call at (800) 799-0600 or visit nextiva.com to learn more. 


Unified Communications Services: What Does it Really Mean?

You may have heard the phrase “unified communications services” buzzing around lately. While many businesses have been adding communication features to their existing services to increase productivity and efficiency for some time, it is now more important than ever to have a unified communications solution for business growth and success.

What is unified communications?

Unified communications (UC) is the integration of real-time, enterprise, communication services such as voice (including VoIP), mobility features, audio, web and video conferencing, instant messaging, presence information, data sharing, call controls, and speech recognition.

There are other services within unified communications, but at its core, UC integrates a wide variety of communication tools to optimize business processes and increase user productivity. In short, it increases user efficiency and mobility so less time is wasted due to miscommunication and more effort can be channeled towards initiatives that lead to business growth and success.

Unified Communications is not a single product, but a collection of services that provides a consistent unified user-interface and user experience across multiple devices and media types. As technology progresses, new services are being added to the unified communications portfolio and they all have a single goal—to increase the efficiency of your business communication.

As Unified communication services have moved to the cloud, the cost of these services has been significantly reduced, making them more accessible to businesses of all sizes. Additionally, the move to the cloud allows users to access information and stay connected to customers and colleagues from anywhere.

How can unified communications help your business succeed?

In today’s hyper connected world, your customers no longer accept a 9-to-5 business environment. In order to meet your customers’ needs and communication preferences, you need to be available to them via a variety of communication channels including social media, email, live chat, phone, etc. Lucky for today’s businesses, unified communications are now more widely available at an affordable price than ever before. Keep reading for common UC use cases that can revolutionize your business communication.

Common use cases include:

  • A cloud-based business phone system can connect multiple locations and remote users, increase mobility with a mobile app, and you can manage your entire phone system from a web-based user interface.
  • Instant message colleagues in multiple offices for a seamless communication experience.
  • Live chat with customers regarding sales opportunities and support-related concerns.
  • It may seem basic, but email is a main channel of communication for employees and customers, and can now be integrated with your other communication channels.
  • Web and video conferencing enables you to take your conference calls to the next level. Share your screen or see those you’re communicating with face-to-face while eliminating the high cost of business travel.
  • Data backup and collaboration ensures you never lose an important file again. Also, you’re able to access your files from anywhere and share them with team members for easy collaboration on projects.
  • Speech recognition features can translate your voicemail messages to text that can be delivered via email or SMS based on the user’s preferences.

These are just a few ways unified communications can improve your business communication both internally and externally. To learn more about unified communications and the impact it can make on your business, please visit www.nextiva.com.


Nextiva Introduces the Polycom UC Software 5.3 Release

Nextiva is very excited to introduce the Polycom UC Software 5.3 release, which is now available for all Polycom VVX series phones.

New Features

  • Call Recording Start/Stop & Pause/Resume soft key integration: This soft key integration gives you the ability to push a button on your phone to start/stop and pause/resume call recording while on a call.

    • Use Case: You may find this feature valuable if you need to collect sensitive customer data during a phone call, such as patient data, credit card details for payments or other personal information.

  • Acoustic Fence: This technology evaluates surrounding audio and performs noise cancellation during a call when using a handset or headset. This does require the user is within proximity of the phone.

    • Use Case: This feature is particularly helpful if you are in a busy office or call center environment or at a conference or video seminar where there is a considerable amount of background noise or activity.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need to reboot all of my Polycom phones?

A: This software release is available for Polycom VVX series phones and does not apply to other models. Therefore, only Polycom VVX series phones need to be rebooted when you are ready to apply the software update.

 

Q: If I don’t accept the update by rebooting now, will it be there whenever I’m ready or will there be a forced reboot at some point?

A: By default, your phone sends update requests to our network every 24 hours to see if there are new updates available. When this occurs, your device will download the new Polycom UC Software 5.3 and reboot.

 

Q: What Polycom devices support the Acoustic Fence technology?

A: This feature is now available on all Polycom VVX series phones and will automatically install when you download the new software.

 

Q: Will the update affect other features or softkeys that are programmed on our phones?

A: This update may eliminate redundant softkeys that already exist as hard keys on your phone. This update will not affect other features on the phone.

 

Q: Will the update affect any custom configuration files I have in place?

A: If there are any custom configuration files on the phone, the phone will not update to the new software.

 

Q: Does this update support Polycom’s expansion module?

A: Yes, this update will support any Polycom expansion module currently installed on the phone.

For more information on Polycom UC Software Version 5.3.0 and a full list of resolved issues, please refer to the Polycom release notes


The Nextiva Mobile App: The Death of the Desk Phone

6-18 Nextiva AppIn today’s hyperconnected world, your customers expect you to be available whenever they need to reach you. Today’s business environment moves at a rapid pace and you can’t afford to be disconnected from your customers or team members. In short, mobility is essential to your productivity and business success. Luckily for you, there are now communication tools available that can eliminate the stress of missing an important phone call. Cloud phone systems have quite a few features to help out today’s business professionals, but none are as essential to your business as a mobile app.

At Nextiva, we offer the Nextiva App that combines voice, video, instant messaging, and presence into a single application that you can access from your desk phone, computer, or mobile device. You no longer need to worry about giving out multiple phone numbers because you can be reached via your main business line at all times, no matter what device you are on. The Nextiva App gives your business the flexibility and freedom to take your business phone with you anywhere; you can even take that conference call from the beach and no one will know!

Business Benefits:

  • Stay connected on-the-go, 24/7
  • Transfer calls between devices
  • Manage your phone system from anywhere

Key Features:

  • Instant Messaging
  • Presence
  • Enterprise Directory
  • Voice Calling
  • Video Collaboration
  • Call Pulling
  • Cloud Sync
  • Chat Rooms
  • Call Controls

The Nextiva App is compatible with Nextiva Office plans and is supported in Windows, Mac OSC, iOS and Android platforms. It can be added to customer accounts, and a simple download from Nextiva.com of the version you need, along with a quick call to our support team, will add the freedom and mobility of the Nextiva App to your business communications.

To learn more, visit our Nextiva App page or call (800) 799-0600. 




 
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