Your phone system is the lifeline of your business. It keeps you connected to customers and helps your employees stay in touch. But is your current phone system meeting all of your needs? Should you upgrade to a cloud-based business phone system? How do you know when it’s the right time to update your communications system? Here are six signs that your current phone system is slowing down your business. If you recognize any of these signs, it’s probably time to move your organization forward with a new cloud business phone system.
1. You are paying more than you should.
On-site PBX phone systems are expensive. There are up-front costs of course, but that’s just the beginning. When analyzing the total cost of ownership, business owners also need to consider recurring fees for maintenance, upgrades, and training, as well as the time employees, spend learning the system, and any downtime that becomes necessary for fixes and changes.
Investing in a cloud-based phone system offers many improvements over older PBX hardware. The most important is the cost. Using a virtual PBX is much more affordable than buying your own gear. Pricing is simple and affordable, and the low monthly fees are per person so your costs are predictable and easy to manage. Maintenance is handled for you, and phone systems can be administered from mobile devices, reducing the need for expensive specialized technical support and training over time.
2. You need an integrated system.
Technology moves quickly, and chances are your teams are using a variety of tools to communicate, including email, messaging software, audio and video conferencing, and more. All of these different services are used across a variety of hardware, including desktop computers, laptops, and mobile devices. Siloing information slows productivity and makes collaboration more difficult. There are also security concerns to consider when your company’s proprietary information is spread across so many systems.
Moving to a unified communications system allows you to streamline processes and use tools and features that are built to work together. RingCentral’s cloud communications platform includes voice services, online meetings, Business SMS, team collaboration, and tons of other advanced features. They’re all designed to work together, and there are desktop and mobile apps so that your employees can work how they want, using familiar tools and resources no matter where they are located.
3. You don’t have advanced features.
It used to be that conference calling and voicemail were the only phone features that mattered. But today’s working environment has changed, and now both customers and employees are demanding more advanced tools. Whether you need to add video conferencing, SMS, or team collaboration, a cloud communications system offers advanced functionality over traditional phone systems.
Nothing is more frustrating for customers than long hold times on the phone. Advanced call routing features ensure that callers get directed to the right people as soon as possible, minimizing wait times. You can also set up rules on a per-number basis, giving important customers priority service.
Business SMS is another advantage that cloud systems offer over traditional phone systems. You already know the benefits of bringing your own device (BYOD) policies. Now your employees can send SMS messages from business telephone numbers, using their personal devices—without compromising their privacy. SMS messaging can improve productivity and reduce response times between team members as well.
4. You have a mobile workforce.
A cloud phone system offers huge benefits for businesses that need to support remote workers. Whether you have full-time employees scattered across the globe, have employees who travel frequently, or would like to offer the flexibility of work-from-home days, a virtual system has tools and features to boost productivity when working remotely.
Hardware phone systems are notoriously difficult to integrate with mobile devices. But flexible call routing and answering rules mean that your mobile employees can easily direct calls to their devices and even set up rules to allow different call handling based on who is calling and what number they dialed. Calls can even be switched between devices on the fly using Call Flip. All of these features can be managed from mobile or desktop interfaces, for maximum flexibility on the go.
5. You need more flexibility.
Businesses can be unpredictable. When a product takes off, you’ll need to scale up quickly to meet customer demand. A virtual PBX system enables your business to grow at exactly the right rate. Scale-up (or sometimes down) as needed, adding new extensions or moving existing ones as your business grows.
If your business is seasonal, a cloud phone system allows you to respond seamlessly as you ramp up for the busy season, and then back down afterward. Unlike traditional phone hardware, scaling your cloud-based business phone system doesn’t require investing in new hardware or extensive tech support. In fact, the whole thing can be managed from a mobile device.
6. You want to provide better customer service.
Moving your business to a cloud phone system lets you offer better service to your customers. The auto-attendant helps incoming calls get directed to the right employees, and you can change call routing to adjust for absences or changes in your business. Automatic custom greetings can provide quick information to callers and also help your small business project a more professional image. When you need to meet with customers or clients, RingCentral Meetings lets you collaborate with up to 50 participants in multiple locations. Built-in screen sharing and integrations with cloud file storage solutions mean you won’t waste time trying to share files between meeting participants.
Meetings work on Macs and PCs, as well as iOS and Android mobile devices. No matter where you are or what hardware you’re using, you can collaborate and share in real-time, without the need for costly travel or the complications and expense of using third-party meeting software. Don’t let an antiquated business telephone system slow your company down. By leveraging the power of a cloud phone system, you can modernize your communications, save money, boost productivity, and improve service to your customers—all of which can also improve your bottom line.