Written by: Guest | Best Company Editorial Team
Last Updated: February 24th, 2020
How would you like to increase efficiency, engage employees, and provide better customer service across your entire business?
Well, these are just a few of the benefits of using VoIP technology instead of landlines for your business’s phone network.
With benefits like these, you’re probably wondering how much it’s going to cost to introduce VoIP in every one of your locations. But the beauty of VoIP is that it can significantly reduce your overall telecommunication costs.
Interested? Let’s take a look at the top six reasons for switching from landlines to VoIP for your business phone service.
- Reduce your business costs
- Increase uniformity for a stronger brand
- Improve customer service
- Increase efficiency across the business
- Secure your company's communications
- Improve remote workforce inclusivity
1. Reduce your business costs
Saving money is the number one reason to use VoIP in your business. The price per call is lower, particularly for international calls, and billing is often much simpler than it is for landline services. Businesses just like yours are reducing their phone service costs by as much as 50 percent by switching to VoIP.
"Gartner predicts that, "... by 2021, 90 percent of IT leaders will not purchase any new premises-based UC infrastructure." This [figure] was 50 percent … in 2018." — BusinessWire
Setting up and maintaining landlines is around 60 percent more expensive than installing and running VoIP (Nextiva), and handset costs are lower for VoIP phones than for standard telephones. On top of all this, VoIP networks reduce the amount of bandwidth you use by filling the space left by silent calls (roughly 50 percent of all VoIP calls) with data to improve efficiency.
VoIP systems need fewer lines than a landline service, which require more lines as the estimated number of calls goes up. With VoIP, you can consolidate your lines and simply add more in the future if the demand grows.
2. Increase uniformity for a stronger brand
Working styles have transformed in the last two decades. The internet and mobile networks mean more people now work outside of an office.
With a VoIP system, everyone gets to use an office number. Remote workers no longer have to use their mobile or home phone to call customers, which improves privacy, increases contactability, and reduces expense claims. All calls appear to be from the local exchange of the virtual number, making communications seamless for your customers.
You can attach any number of extensions to your one business number, which means the entire business uses one phone system to put calls through. An efficient, fast, and secure phone network like this makes bottlenecks a thing of the past, giving you happier customers and a huge competitive edge.
3. Improve customer service
VoIP systems enhance your customer service in a number of ways. First, they let you put calls through to multiple devices at once. That’s especially useful if the person you’re trying to reach is away from their desk, or if there’s more than one person who can help you or (even better) a waiting customer.
Second, VoIP users (whether office-based or remote) can set their availability and provide automated assistance with canned responses, such as a message that explains the opening hours for their office. Additionally, they can set up the system to try multiple extensions before putting the customer through to voicemail.
Third, call quality can be significantly higher on VoIP. This is because the frequency range for VoIP extends to 7000 Hz, compared with a maximum of 3400 Hz for landlines. The higher range improves voice clarity and intelligibility (GL).
And finally, fourth, VoIP networks are actually more reliable than landlines. The idea that your business would be stranded if the internet was unavailable is a myth. While it is true that VoIP relies on an internet connection, it is also possible to redirect calls from a location that becomes unavailable. Sending them to a mobile device or another site instead can reduce the inconvenience of connection loss during, for example, stormy weather.
4. Increase efficiency across the business
VoIP systems can improve efficiency in several ways but perhaps the best of these is that you can send VoIP calls to an email address for later action or filing.
Digium estimates that using unified communications in this way can save an employee up to 40 minutes per day. Add that to the 30 minutes a day saved by being able to find an employee with the first call, and you’ve got a significant time and cost-saving.
What’s more, calls can be recorded. Playing back a recorded call can allow for greater accuracy as well as improved employee monitoring and protection.
5. Secure your company's communications
Cloud-based VoIP solutions give your IT team greater control over in- and outbound calls. Call logging and traffic monitoring can be used to assess staff productivity and find peaks and troughs, which can be particularly useful for customer service employee scheduling.
All good quality VoIP service providers have firewalls and intrusion prevention systems in place, but advanced features that depend on your provider and tariff can include:
- ring-fencing geo locations
- limiting call routes
- limiting access
- implementing credit thresholds
You can also combine your VoIP technology with a VPN (a virtual private network) to encrypt connections and further protect the communications of your employees.
6. Improve remote workforce inclusivity
There has been a rapid increase in 'bring your own device' (BYOD) in recent years creating a large mobile workforce of hot-deskers. These employees often work at remote locations or from home, and it makes sense for them to work from a portable device that they are familiar with. And when they are in the office, according to Gartner, BYOD workers bring an average of 1.7 devices with them.
The risk with BYOD business methods is that the employee does not feel as much a part of the company. They’ve got no permanent office, desk, computer, or colleagues nearby - and that can lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation. VoIP can help reduce these feelings.
Web conferencing is a great way to do this, and it’s incredibly simple over VoIP. As well as the well-being benefits of increased contact with the office, BYOD workers also benefit from:
- instant messaging
- virtual meetings
- sending documents
- sending faxes to email
- getting voicemail into their email inbox
Remote employees can access company directories and voicemail, just as they would in your office.
For employees who spend time out of the office at appointments, the ability to video or audio conference with the office is a bonus. They don't have to travel back to the office after a meeting and they can consult with the team from wherever they happen to be, which reduces travel time and expense claims.
Is your multi-location business ready to reap the benefits of VoIP?
There are compelling reasons to make the change from landline to VoIP. That average 50% cost-saving alone is difficult to ignore. However, as you can see, there are more advantages to VoIP than a simple cost reduction.
Perhaps most importantly, your business will appear as one cohesive brand to your customers, and that can only be an advantage in today’s market.
With VoIP services becoming more reliable, more secure, and more cost-effective every year, it’s surely only a matter of time before you make the switch.
Sam O'Brien is the Senior Website Optimisation & User Experience Manager for EMEA at RingCentral, a global UCaaS systems provider. Sam has a passion for innovation and loves exploring ways to collaborate more with dispersed teams. He has written for websites such as BambooHR and Vault. You can contact him here.