Powerful on demand leased line technology is set to be a game changer for the way companies and organisations communicate with their customers. In this article we look at the prospects for Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP), and how a leased line can open up new opportunities.
As a small business owner, one thing you probably keep hearing about is how the successful enterprises of the future will be ‘connected.’ They will have ‘unified communications,’ after implementing a successful ‘digital transformation’ that might have been fraught with the perils of costly overruns had things gone awry.
It’s easy for the SME business owner to ask yourself: “Where do I start?”
This feeling of being left behind by the rest of the world is easy to understand. At FlexFibre, we have seen it many times amongst those of our clients who are just getting started in the world of connectivity. Typically, these are people who run and own companies of 5-20 people, but don’t have an in-house technology officer responsible for keeping the companies systems up to date.
Very easily, it becomes an item that is moved to the bottom of the ‘to do list.’
With that in mind, FlexFibre has decided to publish several blog posts about the benefits of our on demand leased line service and what such infrastructure can mean for your business. We hope that they will provide you with an insight into what the service could mean for you, and to demonstrate the opportunities that can be exploited if you become a partner of our on demand leased line technology.
In the first article of this series, we will examine Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) provided over a leased line and what that can mean for SME businesses.
What is VOIP?
Voice Over Internet Protocol is at its heart the ability to make and receive calls over the Internet rather than a traditional phone line. This brings with it several key advantages that can be used to give your business a competitive edge.
1. Cost saving:
With a leased line service from FlexFibre, your SME business would be exceptionally well placed to install a VOIP system. The costs of making calls, both domestically and internationally, are much lower than over the traditional telephone lines. The reason for this is that VOIP uses infrastructure that is already in place, (an existing Internet connection).
And with the right VOIP hosted package, other elements of your communications can be included: such as company mobiles, therefore reducing your costs further. They can even include fax technologies, saving incoming messages as PDFs for later retrieval, bringing everything into a single channel.
VOIP allows the business to assign and re-direct numbers extremely quickly. What this means in reality is that a customer help line can be re-directed to a different person in the office or even a different office itself should the need arise. Likewise, new numbers can be assigned to any user to support dedicated help lines for marketing initiatives or product lines.
A prime example of this flexibility with assigning numbers is that a company can have local numbers for certain geographic areas, allowing tailor made responses that can help to increase conversions and offer better appeal over a faceless corporate head office.
3. Location advantage:
VOIP is available anywhere so long as you have access to the Internet – which can be extremely useful so long as the available bandwidth can cater for the traffic. (What this means is that, as an individual you shouldn’t have any problems with a VOIP call, but running a team through a standard Internet connection throughout the day, or from a hotel where there is a connection shared across dozens of people, then quality and speed would suffer).
4. Video conferencing and smart automated answer messages.
VOIP is more than just transmitting voice calls over the Internet. With it, you can conduct video conferencing with clients and staff, you can offer video tutorials as an extra form of help, and you can present to a wide audience from wherever you are. Furthermore, the features of many VOIP services allow you to develop scripts for customer calls, ensuring they get to the right department or staff member.
A case study in leased line VOIP services: The car showroom.
A company based in the South East faced a dilemma that is common amongst firms with different branches. Some customers would call up wanting information that only head office could provide, such as details about their accounts and payment issues. The staff at the local showrooms had no means of answering these satisfactorily, and had to refer the clients back to head office and the finance department.
The management decided to introduce a VOIP system with a leased line connection to allow them to assign numbers for differing departments, using local numbers to keep the trust they had established with their buyers. When a client called in to ask about their accounts or finance plans, the call was taken at head office in the correct department, bypassing the showroom altogether.
Furthermore, each showroom was assigned a series of local numbers to support local advertising campaigns, ranging from radio adverts to print and online. This allowed the company to see which form of advertising worked best for them, resulting a considerable cost saving.
The FlexFibre leased line VOIP advantage:
Whilst VOIP can be used on a conventional broadband, this option is really only practical for a sole user. If there are more than 5 staff operating on a daily basis, conducting sales and account management and putting orders in to suppliers, then a dedicated leased line is necessary to make sure the upload and download speeds of service are of good enough quality for both speakers to communicate clearly. If large files are also being transmitted through the Internet at the same time, then a normal broadband connection will struggle with all the data flows.
So if you think you require a leased line service for your organisation to take advantage of the latest VOIP technology, then contact our FlexFibre consultants for a friendly chat.