How to Transition Your Business to a VoIP Phone System

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Is it time to switch from your antiquated, obsolete traditional phone system to VoIP?

The thing is, when it’s time for a new business phone system, it’s abundantly clear. All of the red flags go up, whether it’s all at once or over time, and your employees start feeling the frustration of a limited phone system.

In today’s world of innovation and digital transformation, most businesses still operating with a traditional phone system have been feeling the heat for a while now. In the back of their mind, their phone system needed an upgrade long ago and the change to a VoIP phone systemis inevitable. It’s just the “how” that keeps businesses from making the leap.

But, let’s say that you’ve already made the decision to ditch that phone system that is holding your business back from a greater return on IT investments. Which, by the way, is a great decision.

So, you’re doing your research, scoping out the different business VoIP providers, and attempting to get your feet wet in the VoIP world, right? It’s a process and one that can seem extremely overwhelming, especially if you don’t have a fully staffed in-house IT team at your disposal. You’re not sure if the transition to VoIP will disrupt your day-to-day functions, or put a big hole in your pocket.

Well, to put it simply, the transition is actually quite easy, without disruption – and you don’t have to worry about your pocket. You’ll actually end up saving more in the long run.

To make it easier for you, we’ve put together the top useful tips that will surely help you on your trip into the cloud:

Have a clear communications strategy 

Don’t just jump in. You’ll probably get sucked in the undertow and likely drop the project before you get started. Then, you’ll miss out on so much potential because you didn’t take the time to strategize first.

Know when you want to implement a new system or if you want to go all in or go in gradually.

Understand your existing infrastructure, budgetary requirements, mobility needs, collaboration application preferences and whether or not you’ll need contact center functionality.

Ask your employees. Survey them and see what they need in order to do their job more efficiently. Analyze your customer’s needs. Figure out what you can optimize in your communications strategy that is going to improve the overall customer experience. After all, your employees and your customers are the foundation of your business. Give them a voice, so that you can give them what they truly need.

Getting a clear picture of what you’re looking for in VoIP phone system is a necessary step in selecting the right solution that will grow with your business. You have the time, so take it. Start your journey well before you’re looking to make the transition, so that when it’s time, you’ll be able to make a truly informed decision.

Select a business VoIP provider cautiously 

Don’t just go for the provider that is most well-known.

Your business is unique, and your VoIP phone system requirements are unique. Avoid a “cookie-cutter” quote at all costs. You’re often paying for what you don’t need, and hidden fees are lurking – you can bet that.

Also, when selecting a business VoIP provider, make sure that you fully understand your goals. If you know your goals, you will better be able to identify which provider is actually concerned with your goals and helping you achieve them. You’re not just a number, so don’t let them treat you like one.

You want to especially avoid settling for the cheapest provider too. When you’re evaluating the different providers, you want to make quality your number one priority. Look beyond the price and focus on features, functionality, customer service, tech support, scalability, flexibility, security and mobility.

Really do your homework. It will pay off.

Secure training for your staff

This is bigger than you think, especially when coming off a traditional phone system that doesn’t have much functionality. You’ll want your team to be fully trained on the new system so that they are leveraging all of the robust features available to them to improve the way they do their job.

You’ll often find that people don’t like change when it comes to the way they have been using their phone system.

People get stuck in what is convenient and have a hard time welcoming a new solution, and that is why, you need to make sure your business VoIP provider offers your team and admins training.

With a wide feature set, and powerful productivity and collaboration features, it would be a shame for your staff not to leverage their solution to its greatest potential.

Do you want the greatest return on investment? Make sure you choose a service provider that doesn’t just make you sign a contract and fend for yourself. You want a vendor that nurtures your employees and actually takes pride in howyou leverage their system. 

Make sure there are no disruptions

When transitioning to a VoIP phone system, there should be no disruptions in communications for your employees or customers. If your business VoIP provider is doing it correctly, it will be a seamless process. So don’t go with a provider that tells you your system will be down for an extended period of time.

You also have to understand that VoIP phone systems need electricity and access to the Internet in order to operate. So, before transitioning to VoIP, you want to make sure that those two pieces of the puzzle are ready for the switch. This is also something your VoIP provider should discuss with you prior to signing a contract.

If you’re not VoIP-ready, a good provider will help you get ready – electricity, internet, and equipment.

On a similar note, you want to make sure that you select a VoIP service provider that offers Business Continuity Plans and Disaster Avoidance. This means that once you’re up and running, you’re protected in case the electricity or internet goes out. Your lines of communication will stay open.

So, make sure you speak to your shortlist of providers about worst case scenario, because you never know. It could be the difference between keeping your customers or closing your doors for good.

Is your business ready to transition to a VoIP phone system?

Whether you’re ready to make the jump to a business VoIP phone system today, tomorrow or in six months from now, you’re making the right decision. Don’t let the fear of change hold you back.

Just remember to do your research on business VoIP providers and find a provider that will fit your unique feeds. As mentioned previously, the cheapest or the most popular is often not the best choice.

Choosing a VoIP providertakes a lot of thought and understanding so that you make an informed decision. Here at UniVoIP, we help our customers through every step of the process. Reach out to us for a live DEMO of our solution unique to you and your specific needs.

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