Not all businesses are alike, but all businesses need to be able to communicate with clients, suppliers, and prospects. Traditionally, this meant having a business telephony system as one of your business’ points of communication. This is still largely the case today, and while other methods, such as email, have become the preferred method of day-to-day messaging, people still favour the phone to keep conversation consistent.
With the evolution of Internet Telephony (also known as VoIP), all businesses can now look at using the internet for making and receiving these phone calls. In doing so, their business telephony moves away from the traditional “land line” setup and even the traditional Phone System too.
In more recent times, with the spread of COVID-19 and the move to remote working, the limitations of having a traditional phone system came to light too by not providing flexibility to be able to easily setup the phone(s) to work from home or having to implement a potentially costly divert to a mobile phone for example.
At BITS we provide a variety of traditional business telephony and VoIP phone system solutions to clients across many sectors and sizes. These include:
Teams Voice is our first business telephony solution, particularly as an example of Unified Communications.
In its native format, Teams is used for video calls and video conferencing, as well as collaboration and integration with Microsoft 365 data (files/folders/etc.). Yet Teams is much more than a means to make or receive phone calls; the phone calling element of Teams is considered a simple “add on” to the Microsoft 365 suite of products that Microsoft offer.
When it comes to providing flexibility and portability, especially in a remote working or hybrid working world, then there are very few (if any other) offerings that comes close. The fact that the Teams Voice offering is integrated into an application on your PC, Laptop and/or smart phone, means that you don’t need to have a handset/phone to make calls. By removing the need to carry a phone around when moving from one location to another (or having two phones, etc), Teams Voice really fits into the remote and hybrid working model. All you need is a headset and the app.
VoIP or Hosted Telephony
Before Teams Voice became popular (that is, during the pandemic), VoIP and hosted phone solutions were already gaining traction.
Simply, these are desk-based phone handsets that are connected directly to the internet and “hosted” by a cloud-based phone system, removing the need for a phone system on-premises.
This solution was (and is) still very popular, providing much of the flexibility around remote or hybrid working too. While some of these solutions do come with a software only option, it’s not integrated into the applications in the same way that Teams Voice is. But it’s an ideal offering for any businesses who don’t use Microsoft as their core software solution within the business.
Traditional or On-Premise Phone System
Where VoIP or Teams Voice isn’t a suitable solution for a client – and there can be many reasons why that is – a traditional phone system might still be appropriate.
In some cases, a traditional business telephony system can leverage the internet for inbound and outbound calls via SIP Trunks, which might introduce cost savings around factors such as line rental.
We can provide a physical phone system solution for your offices. We work with supply partners who install and maintain a physical phone system and make sure it works consistently for your business.
Which Business Telephony Option is Right For You?
Overall, there is no “one size fits all” when it comes to your business telephony and communication. But for the first time in a long time, we could see a likely end to the traditional phone system and a more accelerated change to a hosted telephony solution for businesses.
If you are considering how to navigate in the new “hybrid working” world and how your phone communications can be managed in that space, give us a call and we’ll work with you to find the right solution.