As the world adapts to evolving technologies, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that traditional phones have moved to the Internet. Cloud phone systems use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology to connect phone calls. This does away with legacy technology like analog telephone lines or any on-premises hardware. All you need is a high-speed internet connection.
A business or individual running a phone service in the cloud has many advantages. Two of the most obvious advantages is lowering your monthly phone costs and improved mobility for remote workforces.
From small home office businesses to large enterprises that operate call centers, the flexibility and scalability that only a cloud phone system can deliver make the service ideal for everyone.
Why should you consider cloud phones? Pros and Cons
With all technologies, there are always pros and cons. Let’s start with the advantages of running cloud phone systems.
Cloud phone systems are incredibly cost effective compared to legacy telephone systems or mobile phones.
Why are Cloud or VoIP phones so cost effective? Cloud phone systems run on your internet connection while traditional phone lines and mobile phones involve expenses such as:
- High-cost investment for on-premises PBX.
- Network cabling and contractor fees
- Recurring maintenance costs.
- Add-ons for features like auto attendants, voicemail transcription, call queueing etc.
- Addon Mobile plans and minutes
- Unexpected overage fees for mobile usage and more.
A cloud phone can lower your phone bill by up to 60% and offer so much more than the top tier, most expensive plan you can buy from any carrier. You can get free local numbers, toll-free numbers, unlimited extensions and inexpensive international calls. A traditional landline will never give you the same value for your dollar and mobile carriers can’t compete on price and features either.
Get talking right away with fast implementation and setup
With a traditional phone system, you need to add new phone lines and ports, which can take weeks to order, setup and deploy. Imagine if you had to coordinate additional phones with every new employee. Even worse, what if that employee needs a mobile phone for remote work purpose?
With a cloud-based phone system, you can expand your business at any point. Add new phone lines, forward calls to mobile devices or better yet, assign your cloud phone to multiple devices. Keep all your business communications running, no matter how quickly your company grows.
Once you set up a Cloud phone system, your employees will significantly increase their collaboration and productivity throughout the day. Admins can remotely assign extensions and pull analytical reports that can further enhance business operations.
Virtually no maintenance
Traditional PBXs require IT staff or outside contractors to maintain and add new phone lines. If you suffer malfunctions, repairs can bring your business to a halt and can take days to repair. Yikes!
Cloud phone systems are managed entirely off-site and regularly maintained by your provider. They’ll handle any issues that come up and answer any questions you have. They can even provide upgrades and new features without having to invest in new hardware or infrastructure.
Free up your IT team to focus on more important work. Easily manage your devices and permissions from an easy-to-use dashboard.
Robust call features no traditional phone carrier can deliver
A cloud phone system will provide you access to virtually any advanced phone feature you might need. Some examples include:
- Call forward
- Join Active calls
- Record Calls
- Make calls and assign call to alternate devices
- View current calls in progress
- Manage client contacts and track their communications history
- Multi-level auto attendants
- Call analytics and logs
Offer quality customer service even during busy seasons with ease. If you have a call center, you can operate it with confidence with full visibility of activities through your central dashboard. If your staff is working remotely, you can assign them Cloud Phone numbers to ring their devices.
Did you know you can integrate your cloud phone system with third-party tools like CRM or accounting software? Its’ true, and will help you build a single space to business operations.
Tailor your cloud phone system on the fly to suit any of your business needs. It’s easy and if you like, you can get your provider to help you.
Support remote workers
Considering recent events, working from home has become increasingly relevant. Businesses have begun to change their traditional office setup to build a remote workforce. Traditional phone systems simply can’t meet today’s needs.
Remote work features are available out of the box without a complicated setup. Your team can use cloud desk phones on any device if they wish.
No matter their location, everyone on your team can:
- Keep the same phone number and remain accessible to customers and coworkers.
- Make and receive phone calls with a softphone app on any device.
- Take advantage of advanced features like call forwarding, virtual voicemail, and call recording.
Communicate clearly with substantially better call quality thanks to HD Voice.
Centralize all your business communications in a single platform without meddling with the infrastructure and telecommuting technology.
This solution, referred to as Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS), encompasses phone calls, video conferencing, instant messaging, conference calls, and file sharing.
UCaaS improves productivity and collaboration between on-site employees and remote teams. Everyone has access to the relevant communication tools they need for their day-to-day.
A cloud-based phone system makes employee onboarding quicker and meetings more efficient. It removes the barriers and silos that came with older communication systems—and you get to be in the driver’s seat.
Sounds amazing right? So what are the Cons
A potential downside of a cloud phone system is the need for high-performance networking equipment like routers and switches. The good news most new routers cover all these issues, so if you have old equipment, it might be time for an upgrade.
Wi-Fi doesn’t work well through walls, and as more employees use laptops and softphones, they’ll likely use a wireless connection. This means you may need to upgrade Wifi hotspots and eliminate dead spots.
A stable internet connection is required
What good is a cloud phone if your internet connection fails?
The good news is that a reliable internet connection is the only system requirement that applies. Broadband, Cable, Fiber and LTE have come a long way since the introduction of VoIP. It’s not uncommon to have well over a 100 Mbps available to most businesses and home users. This could support more than 1,000 VoIP calls at once!
Thankfully, your cloud phone service doesn’t use massive amounts of bandwidth. Each one of your phone lines should have at least 100 kbps of upload speed available.
Don’t have access to high-speed internet? Your ISP can provide you with Bonded Internet options that let you combine multiple internet connections.
If your ISP goes down, you can instantly log into your dashboard and direct calls to cell phones with advanced call forwarding. If you have another internet connection available, you can ask your ISP to provide Internet Backup and never drop a call. Worst case scenario, call our support team and we can take care of these urgent requests.
Be sure to monitor your network use. If your team watches youtube while working or remote workers are sharing resources with other household members, it will consume valuable data from your internet connection. Consider implementing Quality of Service (QoS) rules to prioritize VoIP traffic over video streaming. Doing so improves your caller’s experience. Using QoS also reduces Latency and Jitter which could cause your phone call to sound choppy or garbled.
Location info is limited for emergency calls
When calls are directed to an emergency call center (known as a PSAP), operators may not know of your location or even your phone number. By default, calls arrive at the nearest PSAP based on the account holder’s address.
To overcome this, update the fixed address assigned to each business phone line in your cloud phone system. This setting is known as E911 and is something you should become familiar with. When employees work from home or away from the office, you should update it promptly.
We recommend you suggest to your team that people should use their smartphones since GPS data and cellular triangulation passes this data instantly to nearby PSAPs.
Ready to try 1Wire Cloud Phone Systems?
1Wire provides your business with everything required to run your communications in the cloud. Let us know how you plan to use your Cloud Phones and we’ll tailor the right solutions to meet your needs.