Small businesses often overlook the importance of their office telephony system. When deployed correctly an office telephony system can become an irreplaceable element of enterprise success. Unfortunately, when faced with the task of procuring a communications system that can best improve business performance most small business proprietors find themselves lacking the resources necessary to make a solid, fact based decision. To the small enterprise, communications systems are essential for client relationships, operations and overall business capabilities. Modern businesses require a communications system that is mobile, flexible and able to support multiple office locations as well as employees working from remote locations. VoIP provides a fully functioning phone system that will allow both employees and consumers to remain connected, while enhancing productivity and greatly improving the businesses bottom line.
Business VoIP works by converting voice communications into packets of data that are delivered over the public Internet. VoIP is gaining ground with small businesses that support a telework environment as it provides efficient access to the enterprises communications structure from outside of the physical office location – so long as that location maintains broadband Internet connectivity.
The concept of VoIP in teleworking environments can best be explained in terms of IP address functionality. When a remote worker logs on to an IP phone, or an analog phone with an ATA adapter, their phone number is sent to the current IP address by a centralized server.
Once the IP address is registered the employee is able to make or receive phone calls exactly as they would if they were in the office. Most small businesses elect to outsource their VoIP servers to a hosted VoIP solutions provider. Operating over an outsourced server shifts the equipment maintenance, upgrades, and system support responsibilities on to the hosted provider free up the business to focus on more pertinent tasks. Hosted VoIP is especially beneficial for smaller enterprises that lack the in-house expertise and resources necessary to maintain a complex structure.
Given that nearly ¼ of the US population is employed by businesses that support teleworking in their day-to-day functions, VoIP provides many advantageous benefits. In fact, it is very promising to small business proprietors seeking to attract and retain employees with the promise of flexible working conditions. By deploying a small business VoIP solution, businesses routinely employee teleworkers are ensuring that employees working externally are given access to the entire set of communications housed on the corporate phone system.
The majority of businesses operating today are reliant upon the Internet and web based applications, such as email. It is nearly impossible to locate a business, large or small, that does not have access to the Internet and use it heavily for their most dominant applications. Even so, a large group of smaller businesses overlook the possibilities gained from integrating home offices and remote workers into the enterprise phone system. IP telephony and VoIP allow remote users to collaborate with both internal and external parties directly over an active broadband Internet connection. While providing them with access to ground breaking productivity features such as call routing, enhanced voicemail and find me – follow me. Remote employees also maintain the option of harnessing the potential of web based application integration which will allow them to easily make or receive phone calls or check faxes and voicemails through online software based applications.
VoIP also combats the rising costs associated with mobile phones by providing mobile employees with the same great tools and features they would have in the office while traveling. In the past, businesses are avoided providing mobile employees with mobile phones as roaming charges and pay-per-minute billing was often too great of an expensive. Deploying a VoIP solution in situations like these not only provide extreme reliability and quality, it also completely removes unforeseeable expenses by providing users with an unlimited minute plan for a low monthly rate.
When used in a small business environment, VoIP offers more flexibility, mobility and advantageous business enhancing features than ever before possible.