Why Your Old Phone System Isn’t Good Enough Anymore.
In Search of a Replacement Business Phone System
We live in Alberta. Home to what was a public telephone utility. Almost every phone system from this era was Nortel. We see a lot of Nortel CICS, Nortel 3×8, Nortel 8×24 and Centrex. I have a lot of respect for these old systems and for Nortel. Over the last 30 years, my computer changed as did my furniture but my Nortel phone was a stalwart companion.
Times have changed and I’m sure my Nortel would have changed too; if the company had not dissolved. Today desk phones are as varied as the phones in people pockets. The have custom ring tones, web browsers, blue-tooth and some even cameras just like their mobile cousins. Should I switch out my Nortel system just so my office has these new features? The answer for any pragmatic administrator is a clear no! On average a small business phone system is $500 to $900 per phone after all the other costs are gathered. Upgrading phones for gadgets is not economically feasible.
When buying a phone system, its the system features that are valuable and make your office hum just a little bit more. I’m going to mention some features that I think have the most value for small and medium sized businesses. I hope you find them as valuable as we do.
Voicemail to Email.
In the age of smart phones, mobile offices and remote workers, voicemail to email is essential. Instead of having to pick up your voicemail by dialing into the office, it simply comes into your email as an audio file and can be retrieve anywhere, including on you smart phone.
Find Me Follow Me
We’re always out of the office. I don’t like to publish my cell phone number. With Find me follow me, when someone calls my desk phone, my cell phone rings too. So no matter where I am, I still can get my calls. It can be set up to only ring through on business hours or only for certain people. If you use a mobile call plan that includes “My5” or “Friends and Family”, all you business calls can be free – because they’re routed from a single office number.
Direct Inbound System Access (DISA)
For a mobile workforce this is essential. DISA allows me to use my cell phone, hotel phone, or home phone to make a call that looks like its coming from the office. This makes sure that the caller only has my office number and any extra toll charges are shifted to the business lines.
Web Based Configuration
With the old Nortel systems, we would configure and forget. They would work for years untouched. When it came time to change extensions or really any minor change, it would take a call to an expensive service tech. Today’s phone systems are all web based which means you just need to hop on your closest office computer and open a web browser to make changes: keeping the control in the office.
These options are very common on the newer generation of phone systems. We are trained and certified in most of the SMB systems including Aastra, Cisco, Snom as well as some 3rd party like 3CX, Trixbox Pro and SwitchVox. If you’d like to just chat about what the differences are and what would best suite your office needs, please feel free to give us a call.
Serving Calgary’s Small and Medium Businesses
Call our Specialist. He can be reached at:Dar Zuch
Phone System Specialist