As technology has continued to evolve and mature, businesses and not-for-profit companies have made a huge shift away from legacy phone systems to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Business owners and managers find the technology to be more robust, useful, and cost-effective than their old phone systems, and are singing its praises. Whenever you decide to make the change yourself, you’re going to need a VoIP provider that can provide the quality telephone service that your business deserves. To make sure that you start off on the right foot, we’ve compiled five mistakes for you to avoid when choosing a VoIP telephone provider:
Pitfall #1: Choosing a VoIP Phone System Provider Without Expertise in Your Industry If a provider doesn’t fully understand the industry you’re in — the hotel industry, retail, financial, or you name it — chances are that it will be more difficult for them to get a real handle on your business phone system needs. The more experience your provider has with similar clients, the more effective your new VoIP communications system will turn out to be.
Pitfall #2: Not Anticipating All the Potential Costs Involved It is a well established fact that VoIP has many monetary advantages linked to it, especially when compared to a traditional telephone system. However, there are certain additional costs that might be incurred when the new phone system is first deployed, depending on your current network and phones. There are ways to avoid some of the these fees, though if a network upgrade is needed, it can’t be entirely avoided. Luckily, CSM has vast experience when it comes to installing and deploying new VoIP telephone systems and service and strives to be upfront about all the costs involved.
Pitfall #3: Choosing a Provider Without a Plan B The last thing any business wants is to have their phone system go down for any length of time; after all, time is money! A loss of communication can make current clients unhappy and prompt other potential customers attempting to call a business to switch to the competition. To avoid this problem, be sure that the VoIP provider you do business with has enacted a Plan B in case there is a power outrage or other problem either at your facility or theirs. CSM South likes to recommend resilient telecom plans that are both affordable and robust, saving the embarrassment of a down phone system and the potential loss of revenue.
Pitfall #4: Failing to Purchase Appropriate Add-On Features When you upgrade your business phone system to VoIP, you will be presented with both standard features and special add-ons. One of the main reasons why many types of businesses find VoIP so attractive is because of the opportunity for features like contact center, video conferencing, software integration, chat, mobility connectivity, and more. You may not even be aware of everything VoIP has to offer, so be sure to discuss all of the options with your chosen VoIP provider.
Mistake #5: Not Knowing Your Traffic Needs
We touched on this above, but it bears to be repeated in its own section. One of the biggest mistakes that businesses make when upgrading to VoIP is not anticipating how much traffic they’re likely to have, which determines how much network equipment you’ll need. A good rule of thumb is to analyze your traffic from the busiest days of the previous years, then upgrade your network to meet a bit above that demand. If in doubt, your new VoIP provider can help you make that determination. Choosing your VoIP provider is the first step in the process of switching your hotel from its standard phone system to VoIP.
CSM South has experience installing VoIP telephone systems from a wide range of different providers. Two of our favorites are Mitel and GoTo Connect. Mitel is an enterprise grade product used by companies from 2-20,000 users with strong call center and mobility features. GoTo Connect is the leading SMB VoIP phone system provider with a feature rich and affordable product. We have deployed these phone systems in Tampa, Austin, Jacksonville, Naples, Orlando, Lakeland, and Mobile. Give us a call or send us an email to day, we would love the chance to speak with you more!