Whether you are a large or a small company, wanting to offer a high quality telephone reception to its customers is something logical since, in current events, this is in direct contact with the number of sales made and the client satisfaction…
A switchboard is a good solution to efficiently handle incoming calls and manage those that we cannot answer. So, if your company is thinking about the need to subscribe to a system for managing its calls, you will find many possibilities on the market.
Here are some tips when choosing a switchboard.
1. Physical standards, it’s over!
A few years ago, the only option to effectively manage a company’s calls was the purchase of a physical switchboard. Although you can rent them nowadays, the fact is that a physical switchboard requires a significant investment and, besides being expensive, is very difficult to configure and use.
There are currently “cloud-based” solutions known as “virtual telephone switchboards“. This is the natural evolution of the physical standard. They offer more efficient, flexible and economical services, which do not occupy a place in your business and which also allow you to forget traditional physical standards.
2. Look for a quality solution
There are two types of virtual switchboard: the one with which calls are transferred over traditional networks and for which the call maintains the same quality as a normal call, and then the one with which calls are transferred over VoIP.
When subscribing to an IP switchboard, be aware that voice will travel over the Internet to your destination. So you have to be sure you have a very, very stable Internet connection.
It should also be taken into account that, although it is possible to transfer this type of call to 3G laptops, this is not recommended, since the quality of the call is still quite poor.
3. Look for the solution that integrates your portable lines
Today, everything is based around laptops. The trend towards the disappearance of fixed lines is a fact of life because, over time, the costs of portable lines have become more and more reduced while those of fixed lines remain stable.
The advantage of laptops is that they allow you to answer calls wherever you are. The best will therefore be to find a standard that follows the trend and that allows you to make transfers on portable lines.
4. Interconnection is a good option
One of the best things about virtual switchboards is that if you have multiple offices, you can centralize communications for your business, even if the contact numbers for the customer are different. Make sure that your switchboard can be configured under several main numbers and thus centralize, virtually (because physically they will still be separate), all the headquarters of your company. What about sorting calls? Just set up a voice menu for automatic sorting.
5. Take into account basic functionality
There are solutions on the market that call themselves switchboards, but have barely two or three features. Receiving and transferring calls, phrases, hop groups and queues should be the minimum of features of a good standard.
On the market, each company offers a set of initial functionalities for its basic price. Compare them and find the supplier who offers you the best pack at the best price.
6. Pay attention to the fine print
When choosing a virtual switchboard, you will have to take into account the cost of receiving calls.
Some providers set a minute limit for incoming calls. Beware of very economical offers which can have limited call reception and very high costs once this limit is exceeded.
Likewise, the volume of incoming calls may vary from month to month. It is therefore more interesting to find a supplier who offers a service where the reception of calls is unlimited.
7. Know your goal
Before asking for quotes from different companies, keep in mind exactly what you are looking for. Know the number of extensions you need, to define the starting features you need, as well as calculate the budget that you are willing to spend will allow you to have a mind set that will make your choice easier.
Compare the different offers using the Internet and you will be well on your way to choosing the best switchboard for your business!