For years, a traditional business phone system has been a PBX - a big box in the closet with a list of to-do items attached. Outdated parts, unexpected costs and capex overruns became a frequent mantra of IT administrators.
Today, business owners have choices. They can replace equipment-heavy mechanical models—and the complaints that come with them—and shift to a cloud-based digital system that changes the game in communications.
Cloud-based solutions provide the flexibility, scale and cost advantages that traditional phone systems simply cannot. Phone calls take place over the Internet using each user’s IP address as the source and destination. This capability unifies employee communication from traditional phone calls, instant messaging, emails, video calls and more—into one cloud-based integrated platform.
At Spectrum Enterprise, we call it Unified Communications.
As technology provides more opportunities, businesses are moving away from traditional models to hosted solutions for good business reasons:
Reduced costs: Remember that big box of wires in a closet? With Unified Communications, that’s a distant memory because when voice data runs in the cloud, there’s no need for costly on-premises equipment to maintain, upgrade or host.
Simplified management: Unified Communications brings all company communication tools together under one user-friendly, web-based interface with customizable settings and options such as visual voicemail (an app to check your messages, rather than placing a call). Plus, IT teams can access the system anytime, anywhere.
Business continuity: When a natural disaster strikes or technical issues arise, an on-site visit is required to fix traditional phone systems. With a hosted solution, service issues to be addressed remotely, and phone service continues as usual because calls can be routed to other locations.
The modern workforce
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Employees are increasingly untethered from their offices. Recently, 43 percent of employed Americans said they spent at least some time working remotely, according to a Gallup survey of more than 15,000 adults.
Unified Communications provides mobile apps that allow users to check messages wherever they are on both Android and iOS devices. Employees are reachable with one phone number by automatically rerouting office calls to their mobile devices.
From end-to-end, Unified Communications technology is managed and fully supported by one vendor, eliminating the complexities that come with managing multiple lines and sites. This frees IT staff to spend time and resources on accommodating shifting organizational needs that align to business strategies. With the Spectrum Enterprise solution, should a problem arise, IT staff has easy access to specialized support 24/7/365, and end users can speak with U.S.-based technical support teams instantly by dialing *611 from their desk phones.
Robert has over 25 years’ experience in advertising, marketing and branding. He began his career in Boston as a copywriter. He became a Creative Director and Partner in the agency of Carr, Tedrow, where his accounts included Benjamin Moore, before moving to Rochester to become CD of Buck & Pulleyn, where he oversaw the agency's work on Kodak, Xerox, and Bausch & Lomb. His career includes stints as partner, creative director, and agency owner.