According to a report from Infonetics Research, the global hosted VoIP and Unified Communications (UC) market will reach a whopping $12 billion in 2018, across almost 63 million service instances. Cloud-services for hosted voice have grown in popularity, along with many other cloud-based offerings, because they provide numerous advantages over premises-based systems. These are just some of the countless benefits enterprises can experience after deploying a hosted enterprise voice system.
1. Reduces Operating Costs
Implementing hosted voice in the enterprise reduces operational costs in myriad ways. For starters, there are few if any hardware costs, as the majority of the system is housed on the provider’s end and only requires a connection to the provider across the internet. Secondly, additional support costs are eliminated since 24/7/365 phone, email or chat support is handled by the provider, and included in the hosted voice solution. Third, costs of deployment are lower when compared to all of the working hours required by the local IT department and other departments to coordinate a large onsite installation. Finally, maintenance and upgrade costs are few if non-existent, as again, they are part of the bundled enterprise voice package from the get-go.
2. Provides Access to the Latest and Greatest Features
In most markets, the companies that ride the wave of technology trends - and use it to grow their businesses - generally have the advantage over their competitors. Such is the case with hosted enterprise voice. As new tools are added to product suites and further integration between other software utilities occurs, hosted voice users are able to immediately benefit from these upgrades. For instance, adding the ability to text or chat through a cloud-based voice system or access customer information through an integrated CRM database helps customer service and sales agents perform their jobs more efficiently and effectively. They are able to communicate with the end user in more ways and gain access to - and knowledge about - their clients, which assists in customizing the end user experience and maximizing its outcome.
3. Gives Remote Workers the Ability to Work from Anywhere
These days, the average person is busier than ever with a task list that seems never-ending. A large number of employees are looking for a flexible work situation or one where they can leave for a child pick-up or appointment and then continue their work from another location. Hosted enterprise voice systems give remote employees the ability to continue knocking away at their task list even after they walk out the office door, using features like Find Me Follow Me, where all contact numbers ring simultaneously, or calls to your desk phone are forwarded to your mobile device when necessary. And products like MobileMeet, from West, allow remote workers to schedule and participate in conference calls and online meetings from Apple and Android devices – giving them the ability to make forward progress on their workload from work, home, or on-the-go.
4. Gain Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Capabilities
Businesses possessing only on an on-site PBX have but one option when the power goes out or a natural disaster strikes the building in which it’s housed: go without a phone system until the power resumes or a replacement system can be purchased and set up. Either situation is less than ideal for any systems administrator. With hosted enterprise voice, options are readily available for Disaster Recovery Services (DRS). An integrated suite of cloud-based call control and unified communications tools comprises DRS, which allows administrators to create a plan for how voice traffic will be handled and routed during any type of outage.
Products like MaxxConnect SIP Trunking from West – a flexible SIP and TDM trunking option offering cloud-based voice services that work with your on-site PBX – can be merged with DRS to provide disaster recovery and survivability from any type of interruption, from power issues to natural disasters. With DRS, calls can be routed to alternate emergency numbers including other office locations or mobile phones. Auto-attendant greetings can be automatically switched over, to account for the emergency situation, and thanks to synchronization with Active Directory, contact numbers can still be retrieved for outgoing calls.
5. Integration with Existing Business Tools
Another huge benefit of deploying hosted enterprise voice is its interoperability with existing onsite systems. For example, cloud-based voice products like VoiceMaxx CE can integrate with West’s Cloud Contact Center products to provide a complete and scalable voice and contact center solution. Office 365 and existing Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems can work with these cloud-based utilities to quickly provide your call center agents with up-to-date customer contact information, predictive dialing, call history, enhanced call routing, call recording, and much more. With a consolidated system, employees are able to handle customer inquiries or follow-ups with the optimal number of resources and tools at their fingertips, increasing efficiency and resulting in greater customer satisfaction.
6. Improves Collaboration and Productivity
Providing all your employees with the same, feature-rich collaboration software, on the same platform, will ensure your employees have the tools they need to perform their job functions quickly and effectively. Hosted enterprise voice solutions work across all office situations whether on-premises or remote and across a majority of devices - for a universal user experience. Solutions like Cisco Jabber, Cisco Webex Teams and Webex Teams Hybrid, and Microsoft Skype for Business are comprehensive collaboration utilities with communication choices ranging from instant messaging and meeting, to voice capabilities and file sharing, to video calling with directory and calendar access for any kind of collaboration situation that might arise. With all users on the same platform, accessing the same cutting-edge tools, more work is completed in less time.
Here’s what you need to know about the benefits of hosted enterprise voice in a nutshell. It will cut down on operating costs for the business, from hardware, support, deployment and upgrade standpoints. Your users will always have the best, most current communication and collaboration features available to use. A hosted voice system can be deployed almost anywhere, across any platform, regardless of geographic location. Furthermore, companies gain peace of mind from the business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities offered by a cloud-based voice solution. Top-of-the-line hosted voice systems will integrate with the everyday business tools you are already using. And finally, you’ll notice improved collaboration and productivity in your organization as employees have the tools and access they need to perform their jobs to the best of their abilities.