Posts Tagged ‘multiple locations’

Increase Your VOIP ROI By Connecting Remote Locations

May 19, 2009

Once your company has made the investment in a VOIP phone system, there are ways to keep expanding the use of the technology to increase your profits and ROI. A VOIP phone system connects the IP-PBX phone server to each of the phones in any of three ways, all of which work very well. 

The most common method is through the data network infrastructure at your office, using the cabling, switches, routers and other network equipment that is also used by the data side of your business. That would be the main computer server, workstations, printers, etc. Instead of a separate phone system such as was used in the last century with CAT 3 cabling, the modern VOIP system can piggyback on your existing data network, eliminating cost and delays at the startup. With Quality of Service (QoS) enabled in your network, voice traffic is given priority so that the talk is crystal clear to everyone. 

The second method is by wireless networking. Again, when you can run your data network across a WLAN (Wireless Local Area Network), you can add your VOIP phone system as long as you have enough bandwidth to support it. Most G and N band WLANs are fine for office use. 

The last method is via the Internet, using your broadband provider as the conduit for your phone packets to travel to the destination. This opens up your VOIP phone system to connect to telecommuters, field service technicians, sales people, temporary offices, branch offices, and home offices. Everyone who activates either an IP phone or a softphone (computer program installed to work like a screen image cell phone) can connect to the main office as just another extension for the office. They can use the voicemail, page other employees, transfer calls, and use all of the other features used while actually located at the main office. 

A specific example of how useful this VOIP phone system remote connectivity can be are companies with temporary locations such as construction companies for homes, buildings, and everything else you can think of. It is a tremendous advantage to have a live phone at the trailer and worksite to enhance communication between management and the remote work crew without waiting for Ma Bell to run a phone line with a setup and monthly cost attached to it. 

Another example is a managing entity with a main office and many satellite offices. For instance, if a government agency was managing a district with lakes, pump houses, laboratories, fleet offices, warehouses, etc., they could all be connected and just an extension away from each other, even if separated by many miles. How far is many miles? It doesn’t matter if it is on the other side of the city, out in the country, in the next county or on a remote island. As long as a good internet signal is delivered by the telecom company, the connection is strong. 

A franchised business with multiple locations can really benefit from having one VOIP phone server in the main office creating their own hosted solution for every remote store. The cost of the total phone system company-wide might be a fraction of what a normal pre-VOIP system would have cost them. In addition, having the VOIP phone system in place company-wide allows the management to filter all of the phone use data via their desktop Internet browser at any time they need to see the company Call Data Reports and associated metrics. 

Ask for your free phone system audit from Select Phone Solutions by calling 281-501-6464.

“Productivity Through Technology”

Case History – Multiple Locations For One Company

April 8, 2009

Every business has its own method for receiving phone calls, taking messages and coordinating with other offices in the company that may be at separate locations. These methods have been put in place for a reason and are the most effective ways for you to work with your clients, prospects and employees, right?

Well, not necessarily so. Sometimes the methods used in a company are the result of making your habits fit your phone system instead of changing the phone system to reflect how you want to run your business. Any business analyst would tell you that you don’t want to run your business that way. Technology is so advanced these days so why should you let it control you when you can control the technology?

A case history to tell you about is a large company in the medical industry. They have nine locations in a major Texas city with a total of about 270 handsets. They have a PBX in every location but they were not coordinated to work with each other. The company wanted to have all calls go into one location and then filter through to the appropriate office. This is not a difficult project for Select Phone Solutions because of the customized VOIP software that is used to program all of our phone systems.

Asterisk with trixbox is a Linux-based software control system that runs the phone system via computers linked by existing network cabling. In between locations, the broadband Internet connection serves as the link to create the coordinated system that this company wanted to have in place. In this case all of the offices were in the same city, but it actually does not matter if they are one block from each other or across the state. The project is implemented the same way in either case.

The important features of the system were:

  • Every location was structured to set up local phones and extensions.
  • The main location was set up to handle all of the inbound calls and then pass outbound calls to a second server due to the high volume that was flowing through the system.
  • All locations were linked to act as a wide area phone network.
  • A call center was set up so that the personnel could log in and out of their handset on the desk and allow it to be used by multiple employees during the day.
  • T-1 lines were implemented at all locations to provide proper up and down bandwidth to maintain Quality of Service for the entire system.

The end result was that the company now had the system running the way that it wanted to conduct its business. They didn’t have to conform their methods to an inflexible key system or someone else’s idea of how to run a business no matter what industry or type of clientele was important. The Asterisk / trixbox system performs exactly the way that is best for the company today and if that changes next month or next year, the system can be tweaked to reflect the new method that would be best for them at that point. Should your company have any less than that?

Ask for your free phone system audit from Select Phone Solutions by calling 281-501-6464.

“Productivity Through Technology”