The advancements in technology have changed the way a business process is performed, how a business interacts with clients, and how workers collaborate and connect with each other.
From in-person to remote interactions, communication isn’t only ideal but also crucial in the success of business operations. But while new technologies mean that omni-channels for communications are now more accessible, it’s noticeable how the majority of people still prefer to use mobile phones.
Thus, a phone call remains at the top of preferred channels for communication between businesses and their customers, and within the business itself.
But for businesses to truly benefit from it, a multi-function phone system is more ideal. Business phone systems can offer a lot of advantages such as improved customer service, streamlined workflow, and reduced cost in different aspects of the business.
If you have a business that you think may benefit immensely from a phone system, you should consider setting up one for your business. But if you don’t know where to start, keep on reading.
The following is the typical process of setting up a phone system for a business.
1. Choose The Most Suitable Type of Phone System For Your Business
There are many types of business phone systems offered in the market today. To avoid getting overwhelmed, decide on your priorities first. What features and functions will really help the business process you employ? You may have to do a lot of research, and perhaps some consultations too, to make sure your decision will be the best for your business in the long term.
For small businesses, there are also options like Open Phone, which can be perfect if you simply want to add a work phone number to your existing device and don’t want to carry extra sim cards or two phones.
For bigger businesses, phone systems can either be landline-based or online-based. There are also hybrid systems.
Some of the best options you can consider are the following.
KSU (Key System Unit) System
The most basic, landline-based system, the KSU can come with multiple phone lines. As the name implies, this system is reinforced with a physical, core central unit known as the KSU or key system unit. Because of the hardware required, a KSU system may be costlier as it’ll also need you to invest in installation and maintenance fees. Nevertheless, it’s ideal for small to medium-size businesses.
This is the portable version of the traditional KSU, minus the core control box. It provides multiple phone lines, where the phone units can be easily unplugged when they have to be moved or transferred to another location. The KSU-less system is best suited for businesses with no more than 10 phone lines.
VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) System
One of the most popular options for larger businesses, this system has more features and is scalable. The VOIP system connection is dependent on the internet, which has changed the traditional phone call made via traditional copper wiring. Another reason to use VOIP is it allows the integration of other online tools that make it possible to streamline the entire phone-based communication process.
PBX (Private Branch Exchange) System
PBX is similar to VOIP, except that it uses a hardware system where it’s dependent on like routers and phone units. The PBX system is also ideal for larger companies. But although it also has advanced features, it is less flexible and more expensive to scale as it requires more hardware and infrastructure.
2. Sign Up And Choose Your Business Number
Once you’ve decided on the type of phone system, you can sign up for an account or a contract, and then choose your business phone number. If the provider allows it, you may be able to customize your number to suit your brand.
3. Record Messages
After the successful installation, the next step is to record custom messages. This includes the greetings and voice prompts that will be played throughout a phone call process when a live agent is not on the line. Examples are the prompts that customers will hear if they need to dial options to reach a department, if their call is not picked up immediately, or if they have to wait on hold. These messages should sound warm and professional. Pick an employee who has a courteous and polite tone. You can also hire a professional voice talent.
4. Incorporate Extensions
When setting up a business phone system, don’t forget to add extensions, especially if you have multiple departments. Extensions are usually included in business packages offered by the majority of telco vendors.
These extensions will help to direct customers to a specific department faster. Internally, it’ll also help your employees coordinate with other departments on the fly.
5. Start Receiving Calls
Once your phone system is all set up and tested, you can start receiving phone calls from clients and customers. But before launching, make sure to have a monitoring process in place that’ll help you keep an eye on your system. This can be easier and streamlined if you a software program that tracks all activities in your phone system, which will also help you consolidate and analyze the data you need to improve your system in the future if needed.
In this digital era, businesses should be easily accessible to consumers who want to make a connection. Fortunately, business phone systems today are more advanced and have better functionality.
To choose the right phone system for your business, consider your company size and the typical number of phone calls you’re expecting in a day. Do some research on the options you’re considering, and visit the provider for consultations so you can get all the details you need before making a decision. Once your phone system is running, your daily tasks should include monitoring and analyzing your activities.
An efficient phone system will help expand your business’ reach. Once you have one in place, it’s a continuous responsibility you’ll have to commit to in order to make sure it serves its purpose well.