How outdated phone systems are killing business
Thrive in today’s economic climate requires unified communications
Yes, those old traditional landlines are on the way out. In 2017, almost 90% of phone numbers were connected to mobile devices or Internet-enabled phones. And some experts predict that 2020 is the year landlines will finally become obsolete. (Honestly, they probably won’t go away that quick. After all, there are still people using analog modems, believe it or not.)
Still, even as landlines fall out of favor, many businesses rely on traditional private branch phone systems (PBX) for day-to-day operations.
Their trust in these systems makes sense: landlines aren’t susceptible to remote hacking (although analog lines can still be hacked locally with good old fashioned wiretapping), they usually keep working when you’ve lost power, and they’re locally based , which gives full control to the owner. Owners like to have complete control over everything that affects their business, especially things that affect the bottom line.
But the world of work is changing rapidly, and for any business to succeed at this point, it needs a better alternative – unified communications.
How old phone systems are hurting business
Older PBX phone systems in today’s business environment have some pretty serious limitations. Some of them impact the business and lead to:
- Bad customer service: Leaving a voicemail and waiting for a response is a 90’s thing! In fact, most consumers expect to communicate with businesses online, be it online ordering, email, text messaging, or live chat. If the only way to contact your business is by phone, you’re probably missing out on a big opportunity to quickly address service issues, retain customers, and improve your reputation.
- Internal communication error: Using old phone systems can be frustrating for office workers. Imagine leaving a voicemail about an urgent problem with your boss and not getting a response for hours or days. Relying on outdated technology makes employees feel less productive, which can lead to other problems. According to a 2018 study by Unisys Corporation, these frustrated employees are 450% more likely to leave than employees at companies with better technology solutions. Although this study sounds pretty far-fetched, it’s entirely possible that the presence of outdated technology is an indication of a larger problem in the business. However, this dubious study supports the narrative that old technology can cause serious problems in a company. It is therefore worth mentioning. Clearly, updating your system and improving communication for everyone is better than recruiting and training new employees.
- Less flexibility: As many companies have moved to remote work, they have found that landline phone systems are much less flexible than VoIP-based PBX systems. Landline systems are tied to a specific geographic location and connect to the company’s individual telephone network through telephone hardware (eg, telephone cables, telephone wall ports, etc.). Thus, they cannot be easily integrated with computer software applications, SMS and MMS messages, video calls, chat applications and other great features required for remote work easy. Conversely, a unified communications system supports all of these tools, making it extremely easy to onboard remote employees.
- Difficulties in diagnosing problems remotely: Diagnosing and fixing problems with traditional PBX systems requires troubleshooting by the IT department (if you have one, that is) or a technician from the phone system provider. The process includes testing connections, evaluating internal and external parts, and possibly tinkering with equipment on the outside of your building. This means scheduling a day and time for the repair, while your system remains down, resulting in lost revenue. On the other hand, to deal with problems with cloud-based systems, you have access to 24/7 technical support that can get into your system and quickly restore things. No pre-registration required.
- Difficult to grow: When your business grows, it is quite difficult to outgrow your old phone system. Typically, with each batch of new users, you’ll need to add a bunch of new hardware. This hardware is usually proprietary, expensive, and probably needs to be installed by an experienced technician. Web-based phone systems are much easier to expand.
Why Your Business Needs Unified Communications
As an alternative to your old phone system, it’s time to embrace unified communications. Broadly speaking, it is a comprehensive service that enables all employees in your company to communicate in a way that delivers the best business results. Most unified communications components are based on Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), which enables you to communicate from anywhere using the same phone number, extensions, and features.
And if we look more specifically at the advantages of a VoIP PBX system over an old phone system, there are several advantages. You have the option of using both physical phones and “soft phones,” which are computers or mobile devices that use specialized communications software. VoIP PBX systems also connect to all of your business locations, allow you to respond to messages and requests in a timely manner, and can be easily scaled up or down at any time. In short, a VoIP PBX system moves and grows with the ever-changing needs of your business. Your old phone system limits your ability to serve employees and customers and ultimately reduces your profits.
Set up your virtual PBX system today
Work with us to introduce cloud phone systems in your daily business operations. Our VoIP PBX system helps you reduce costs, connect all your business locations in one communication domain, send free SMS messages from business phones and desktop computers, and have access to free technical support 24/7/365. Contact us today to discuss your needs and explore the best options for your company.
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