Business Telecommunications

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Business telecommunications aren't getting simpler--they're getting more complicated. Whereas phone calls and faxes were all we had to deal with fifteen years ago, now we've got more calls, more faxes, pages, e-mails, cell phones, and wireless devices (just in case we're out of reach of any of the aforementioned devices/methods of communication). Complicated enough for you?

As the methods we use to communicate expand exponentially, most managers are looking for ways to streamline the way these communications are managed. Bundling is one way to accomplish this. Finding providers that offer multiple services for one price is much easier than negotiating and establishing individual contracts for individual services. VoIP providers are an example of how bundling can really add up to big savings (in terms of time, money, and productivity) for just about any type of business.

When you implement VoIP, you're changing your phone communications from analog to digital. Since you've already got digital communications going through any and all available bandwidth in the form of e-mails and wireless communication, the next natural step is to combine all digital services into one package, managed by one provider. To sweeten the deal, many VoIP providers have expanded their offerings to include mobile office solutions and unified messaging. You may wonder why a bundled solution like this hasn't become de rigeur yet. The answer lies in the timing.

When Is a Good Time to Switch to VoIP?

Switching over to VoIP makes more sense at certain times of a business cycle. Legacy communications systems like on-site PBX systems aren't cheap. Many companies want to squeeze every drop of use they can get from such a system before changing from analog to digital. It makes sense--if you've just bought a great cathode-ray TV, you're not likely to turn around in a couple months and buy a HDTV or a plasma TV. Responsible consumers want to get top value and usage out of existing resources, which is fine. That's also why the changeover to digital communications is slower than you might expect--companies need to do this at their own pace. Not everyone went from having a film camera to a digital camera overnight; the same is true with communications systems.

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