To understand why we are choosing to talk about cloud-based phone systems today, you need to know this-
It is an undeniable fact that communication is the key for businesses to establish a brand image and quality relationships with their vendors, customers, and stakeholders. In a world of fiercely competitive businesses, one of the sure-shot ways to success is to beware of the pitfall of poor communication (read: delays in answering calls, substandard call quality, or disconnected calls).
And let’s be honest here – you cannot afford that.
Having said that, technology in today’s day and age ensures that you don’t suffer from the aforementioned crisis. Now it’s on you to grab the available opportunity. And shifting to enterprise phone systems and thus a virtual phone number is that opportunity for you.
Here’s everything you need to know about cloud-based phone systems:
What is a cloud-based (enterprise) phone system?
Cloud-based phone systems are neither an alternative nor a luxury. They have become a mandate for businesses looking for an edge.
Cloud-based phone systems are an internet-based service for you to make/handle business calls, voice mails, and other messages, more efficiently than ever before. Businesses vouch for the security it offers as a virtual server stores the data which you can access over the internet – anytime, anywhere (phone system is placed in the cloud).
It is from third-party service providers like CallHippo that you can get and leverage these phone systems.
How do cloud-based phone systems work?
Well, there’s no rocket science in that.
Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of how cloud-based phone systems work:
- Your voice (voice signals) first convert into tiny data pieces and vocal samples are broken down into voice packets.
- The said digital packets are then sent to the receiver through the VoIP provider – over the internet.
- The VoIP provider routes the call through the cloud-based PBX (private branch exchange).
- The data is then sent to any landline or VoIP phone system.
- This data converts into voice signals upon reaching its destination.
The best part about cloud-based phone systems
All you need is a stable internet connection to access these phone systems. Can we just say – it can be available for anyone, anywhere?
You can make calls using a cloud-based phone system via
- Traditional phones with VoIP adapter. These adapters can plug into both- phone outlet in the wall or router.
- A computer. How? Through a softphone. Applications like Skype, Google Voice, and Apple FaceTime are best examples when it comes to making hassle-free calls over the internet.
- Your smartphone. Yes, isn’t that efficient?
- VoIP phones. These traditional looking analog phones connect directly to a computer network and not a phone line.
Features of a cloud-based phone system
Cloud-based phone system facilitates call transfers, call conference, call queuing, call forwarding, call recording, on-hold music, etc. Other than that you’ll also have access to :
- Call Barging – Your call monitoring supervisor can also enter a conference call with your client if need be.
- Local Phone Numbers– Cloud-based phone systems enable you to get local virtual phone numbers exclusively for your business.
- Ring All- Through this, calls can be made to all users associated with a number at the same time. Plus you have the added benefits of phone extensions.
- Voice Mail – It also ensures that you do not miss your voice mails by sending them directly to your email.
- Call Analytics – Analytics helps you monitor the service quality by measuring the number of missed calls and call load on your team members.
- Unified communication- Cloud-based phone systems enable you to unify your business communication mediums. It brings enterprise phone system, voicemail, chats/instant messages, video conferencing and faxes under one umbrella. And it further integrates these with email, web apps, social media, CRM tools, etc.
- Artificial intelligence- AI enables functions like speech to text conversion and sentiment analysis.
Pros of cloud-based phone systems
- Cost effectivity -You never have to worry about the cost of call minutes and expensive international calls as you’ll only have to pay for internet usage.
- Reliability – They are hosted in multiple locations. So even if one server suffers, your communication is taken care of by another server.
- Flexibility: As long as you have an internet connection workers can receive calls on their smartphones – anytime, anywhere.
Cons of cloud-based phone systems
- Connectivity – Cloud-based phone systems are entirely dependant on the internet. This is not a drawback per se but before converting to cloud-based phone systems, you’ll have to make sure that you have a stable internet connection at all times.
- Security concerns – Also given that your communication is based on the internet you have to be extra careful about the security issues such as hacking and malware. However, there are various standard security measures and mandates that will nullify this concern.
Conclusion – However, the little cons are nothing when compared to the positives cloud-based phone systems bring to your business. The fact is our economy is drastically shifting to being a remote one. And in times like these, it becomes imperative to incorporate tools that ensure your business is up and running even when your staff is not physically present under one roof.