A modern approach to business telephony
Companies that adopted cloud-based technologies for business communications plus general productivity and operations were better prepared for remote working during the Covid-19 pandemic. This adoption is expected to continue and having hosted voice telephony is a key part of digital transformation for small and medium sized businesses.
What is hosted voice?
Hosted Voice is a fully featured telephone system hosted in the cloud, it is fully managed and highly reliable. Of course, being technology, there are several other names that are used to describe the same thing, such as:
- Cloud PBX
- Cloud telephony
- Hosted VoIP
- Hosted PBX
- Hosted telephony
Because it is cloud based there is very little hardware involved, this is in complete contrast to a traditional phone system with all the hardware and phone lines located in a single office.
The great thing about Hosted Voice is the simplicity, all that is required is a high quality and reliable internet connection. This simplicity means freedom to access your phone system from anywhere, anytime, and from any device.
Flexibility is also a key business benefit, particularly today with a dispersed workforce. Cloud based solutions are scalable and offer value for money. A hidden gem that is often overlooked is because hosted voice can be accessed anywhere, anytime and from any device, it is not only useful for working in the office, home or a bit of both but it’s also another tick in the box for your business continuity plan.
How does it work?
The key difference between a traditional in-the-office and a cloud-based phone system is the way calls travel. Instead of calls travelling over copper wires between the handset to the phone system and the phone system and beyond, calls travel over a data network and over the internet. In effect, calls are treated as data, which means you will need a reliable and good quality internet connection.
To get a little more technical, the voice call travels from IP (Internet Protocol) source to IP destination, or may break out to the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network). An IP destination could be a work colleagues’ handset, and a PSTN destination could be a landline number of a customer.
If the Covid-19 pandemic has taught us one thing, it is that cloud-based technologies have enabled many businesses to adapt to the huge home working experiment with relative ease. It is these businesses, the early adopters of these innovative technologies, that were and are best prepared for the future. By making investments in the latest operational and communications technology, your business will not only be more agile but because of that commitment to modernise, it will make tasks easier for your staff and help attract new talent.
The genie is out of the bottle, even when the pandemic is behind us, most employees expect to continue to be working from home in some form. A positive output from this pandemic is that a new work/life balance is being established, and modern cloud-based technology is a key part of this new world of work.
Benefits of Riverbank Hosted Voice for business communications
- Any device, anywhere communications
Hosted voice can be used by your staff wherever they are. It can be accessed from any device such as mobile, PC/Mac and tablets. Of course, if a handset is required then a range of fixed handsets are also available. Calls can be seamlessly transferred between devices and voicemail can be accessed from any location.
Hosted voice is scalable, unlike a traditional phone system, so you can scale up or down depending on your needs. You pay a monthly fee based on the number of users, without the considerable upfront costs for system hardware.
- Business Continuity
As a cloud-based system, hosted voice significantly reduces the chances of business disruption. It is a key part of your business continuity plan, no matter if it’s an office closure due to a power cut or a global pandemic(!), you can still make and receive calls as if you were in the office.
- CRM Integration
Our hosted voice solution can be integrated with numerous line-of-business applications such as SalesForce, providing access to contacts from one place and identifying customers before you answer. A productivity benefit and enhancing the customer experience.
- All-in-one communications
We get it, some people like Microsoft Teams and want all their comms in one place. No problem, with our Teams Talk solution, your phone system is integrated with Microsoft Teams, the ultimate unified communications system
With hosted voice, security comes as standard. Optional features such as PCI-compliant call recording can help prevent fraud and can also be used for staff training and improving customer service.
Make the switch to hosted voice in advance – traditional telephony is being retired
Traditional telephony or on-premise phone systems are expensive to buy, occupy physical space and lack scalability – yet there are still lots of businesses using them with fixed landlines.
Today’s hosted voice solutions have significantly changed telephony for the better with a more efficient and cost-effective approach.
Make a note that from 2025 BT will switch off traditional PSTN and ISDN telephony, this means businesses will have no choice but to switch to a modern phone system. Data from BT reveals that while just over half (52%) of businesses are aware of the change, only 8% have prepared in advance.
Switching to a hosted telephony solution now means that you can tick one thing off your list without having to worry about it later down the line and you can stay ahead of the competition with all the benefits that a hosted voice system brings.
Want to learn more about hosted voice?
As part of the Air IT Group, Riverbank IT Management is an award-winning communications provider helping to digitally transform businesses of all sizes and sectors. If you’d like to find out more about how Riverbank’s Hosted Voice can increase your productivity and futureproof your business, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.