Each and every business has its own set of challenges to overcome. However, there is one solution to many of the problems associated with building a successful business- an properly designed and programmed telephone business phone system. When many people begin their search for a new VoIP phone system they quickly become overwhelmed by all the options. After all, what are some of the steps and where should you begin begin to select and deploy a phone system that’s right for your business?
As you may have guessed, that is where CSM South comes in! We have taken the time to focus on the top three tips for choosing a new phone system. Let’s dive in!
1) Determine your Business Telehone System Needs
The best place to start when lookinginto a new phone system is to identify problems or business issues that you may be looking to fix and what goals you’re trying to achieve. Here are a couple of questions you can ask yourself along with any other employees or department heads – before getting started:
A) How much of your business is still done over the telephone vs email or chat features? Could a more basic phone system satisfy your business needs?
B) Is there a wish list of potential features or functions that your employees been asking for?
C) Do you plan on growing or adding any locations or remote staff in the near future?
D) Are there any customer service pain points that might be able to be addressed by your new business phone system?
E) When it comes to call volume, what is the expected quantity of calls per day, per month, or per year?
F) Is there a wish list of potential features or functions that your employees been asking for?
Once these questions are answered, along with any others that you may discover as relevant, feel free to move on to step two.
2) Hone in on the Essential Features for your Phone System
After you determine how a business phone system can assist you with completing your goals or addressing issues within your organization, it’s time to figure out what features you need. Every business has specific features or functions desired, so it’s a good guess that you and your company will too. However, in order to assist you in your process, we’ve gone ahead and determined what some of the most common and broadly required characteristics of an excellent new business phone system.
Consistent and Reliable Service
Probably the most important function of a telephone system is it’s most basic- reliability. This can be a tricky aspect of your research, however as it can be surprisingly difficult to test. To begin, consider asking your business associates, other business owners, etc. This will give you first hand knowledge of the various providers phone system out in the market. You might also read customer reviews of business phone systems online, but take these with a grain of salt as you might any online review. If you are working with a value added reseller or consultant like CSM South, then another good idea is to ask for the provider’s risk management plan, fail-safe policy, and/or backup plans before going further down the sales path.
The elephant in the room when buying most anything is cost. For many businesses, the last thing that they want to do is spend a fortune on a new phone system. Take heart though! In the market today, most VoIP phone systems are on the lower end of the cost spectrum due to lower set-up and operational expenses, surprising most buyers.
Most cloud VoIP providers bundle their service based on the quantity of phones purchased, with options to add additional features such as call center or advanced call routing for an additional fee later. Others charge one flat rate for access to their entire feature set. Additionally, most resellers add a nominal charge for setup and configuration. This fee can be avoided- but that will leave you to do all of that on your own! Most businesses see this initial charge as very reasonable and a small price to pay to avoid a VoIP deployment headache.
One of the advantages VoIP phone systems have over landline systems is the ability to connect. For instance, a landline system might allow three-way calling, but VoIP systems can include video conferencing, faxing capabilities, and integration possibilities with email systems, training programming, CRM software, and more! If you have multiple programs that would benefit from a connection to your business phone system, make sure the one you’re choosing has that capability.
Worker & Employee Mobility
The concept of working from home (WFH) or working remote is nothing new but was greatly accelerated and even normalized by the Covid-19 pandemic. When considering a new phone system, it is critical that communications can be accessed from and utilized from anywhere. For new VoIP phone systems, look for ones that provide mobile applications for smart phones and the ability to utilize desktop applications for in-office users or laptop warriors. Having this available for your employees will enable more flexibility and engender solutions for your customers.
When selecting a value added reseller like CSM, and indeed the VoIP provider themselves, you should consider longevity or the business (CSM was founded i 1984!) along with the ability to reach out to support staff. As an example, CSM has 24/7 live support for emergencies, online web portal for ticket entering and tracking, and email as well. Our goal is to make it as simple as possible to open and resolve tickets. Your phone system provider should have a track record of excellent customer support. Researching current customer reviews on Google and word of mouth will be good resources in your search for which provider is the most attentive to their customers’ needs.
3) Pick a Provider of a Business Phone System
Not too much to say here! After you have completed all your research, assembled all of the options, all you need to do is choose the one that best aligns with your criteria!
Find What You’re Looking for with CSM
When you’re in the market for a new business phone system, we’d love to be the company you choose and trust! At CSM South, we’re ready to assist you in your search for the best solution for your business needs! With the right mix of offerings, we are sure to find you your perfect phone system!