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Author Archives: Kelly

The Importance of Unifying Your Vendors

How many unique communications services and vendors is your business using today? How many different apps, platforms, dashboards, and file-sharing services are you toggling between each day? As both technological capabilities and your business have evolved, it’s probably just become second nature to add a new service or provider when you need one. Of course! You have a problem, and this shiny new app or software solves it. Who wouldn’t sign up?

Where there’s growth, there’s usually growing pains, and communications services is no different. A recent report detailed in the Wall Street Journal shows a staggering 68% increase in the number of software apps deployed by large firms, an average of 129 apps per business. Smaller firms, while utilizing fewer apps, are still increasing the number they deploy, averaging 73. 

Wherever your business falls, it’s clear things can quickly get out of hand. Bouncing around from app to app all day takes time, gets unmanageable, frustrates your employees, and costs your business. Unifying your communications services and minimizing the number of vendors you have to interact with increases your operational efficiency, saves you time and money, and eases employee tensions. 

Cut off the unnecessary dead weight and endless service providers who are holding your business back. Unify your communications platforms and bundle your Managed IT Services with one reliable provider and enjoy all of the benefits of unified services. 

Boost Your Business’ Efficiency with One Service Provider

Toggling between several dozen apps or platforms takes time. Opening the software, logging in, remembering which app does what, and then finding the tab you need eats up precious work hours. 

A recent study from Pega found that within 5 million work hours reviewed, the average employee switches between 35 apps more than 1,100 times a day. One thousand one hundred times a day. Further, they found that this time adds up to over an hour of lost productivity each day per employee. Say goodbye to 5 hours a week from each of your employees! 

Not only is the physical act of switching from one app to another a time-suck, but consider all of the other time spent managing these apps. Your employees must remember which service does what, where is this file saved again? Does Mark prefer email or text? If I can’t reach Beth via phone, what app should I try next? The mental gymnastics and cognitive dissonance can become dizzying. 

On top of all of that, the more apps and services you use, the more likely it is that at least one of them is experiencing issues at any given time. Who do your employees reach out to? How do they request a ticket when their communications services malfunction? 

With one reliable provider, you can seamlessly integrate all of your services into one platform. Deliver a consistent UX to your employees, and eliminate time spent wasted bouncing from one messaging service to the other. 

With S-NET unified communications and managed services bundled, your business enjoys best-in-class service, one simple interface, and high-level IT expertise. Save your employees time and offer a truly integrated and functional work environment. 

Improve Manageability and Operational Agility

When your business deals with multiple vendors to support your day-to-day operations, you suffer from a lack of operational agility. 

Imagine your business experiences a great quarter and you need to add a few teammates to support the growth so you hire 3 new employees. Now, either you, your IT manager, or someone else within the organization must create new accounts for each of those employees across your suite of services. 

New desk phones, new computers, new logins to all of the apps you use, and all of the onboarding and training those apps require. Even just adding 3 new employees can take a tremendous amount of time, especially if your business falls closer to the average of 73 apps (that’s 220 new accounts..).

Not only is scaling a monumental task across multiple vendors and services but so is dealing with any situations that arise. Your customer service experience may vary wildly if you can figure out how to get ahold of anyone who can help you. 

Instead, with just one provider who manages your phone, messaging, data, file sharing, and provides Managed Services, your support, for nearly any technological issue, is simple to access. Get industry-leading support and lightning-fast response time from a reliable provider you can trust. 

Let S-NET Manage Your Tech

Your business relies on a wide range of services and equipment to function as normal. If you’re like most businesses, this comes with an overwhelming number of vendors and apps. Your employees and your business deserve better.

Enable your staff to work productively and free from frustrating app-toggling while ensuring that your network and business-critical applications are always functional. S-NET offers our clients a seamless process from start to installation, handling all of your technology and maintenance, and providing 99.999% uptime. 

We offer the high-level IT expertise your business needs, with the white-glove customer service that you expect. We’re large enough to deliver and small enough to care. We’re in the business of empowering yours. Contact us today to cut out the unnecessary vendors and applications holding your business back. 

 

How to Select the Right VoIP Provider

There are literally countless VoIP providers vying for your business all around the world. Seriously. For us to try to quantify just how many VoIP providers there are out there would be nearly impossible. 

Instead of focusing on the thousands of VoIP providers out there who aren’t the right fit, you’re probably much more interested in understanding how to select the right provider for you. With so many sales pitches, gimmicks, and SDRs fighting for your attention, we’ll help you cut through the clutter and identify your ideal VoIP partner. 

Understand the Service Options 

Before you can select a VoIP provider, one of the most critical things you’ll need to understand is what exactly is available to you. 

For starters, you’ll need to decide between hosted VoIP or Premise based. With hosted, your call flow and data will be routed through an off-site location, supported by the cloud. Your provider maintains control of the system and settings, and is responsible for maintenance and 

A premise based system on the other hand, requires some initial investment (hardware and equipment), but grants you more control of your network. Your business is responsible for producing, installing, and maintaining any and all equipment for your network. 

Each option comes with their own unique pros and cons, so be sure to do your research and understand what is best for your business. You can find some more info on how to determine if a cloud or premise based phone system is best for you here. 

Identify Key Features Your Business Needs

VoIP phone enables your business to achieve its goals with several advanced features. Not all providers offer all of the same features and functionality in their VoIP package. 

In order to determine exactly which features your business needs, you’ll first need to understand your current gaps and goals. 

A reliable VoIP system can fill in your current gaps in a number of different ways. If your business is experiencing reports of poor customer service, you can utilize call monitoring to ensure calls are handled appropriately, set a custom ring list so calls are routed correctly, or even set up virtual extensions so customers can better reach you. 

You may also consider utilizing an IVR or auto-assistant to immediately greet callers and route their calls. This feature not only frees up time for your front office staff or receptionist, but it also provides a helpful experience for your customers. 

There are dozens of different unique VoIP features, you can check them all out on our site and determine which are most critical to you. 

Request a Demo

Any VoIP provider worth partnering with should offer a demo of their services. Even if they don’t advertise it on their website or in their marketing materials, they should accommodate a request for an informal demo. 

Be sure to take this time to familiarize yourself with the products and services. Take note of the call quality. Is it as clear as you’d like? Does the provider offer all of the features that your business needs?

Your demo is not only for testing the product, but also a test-drive for their customer service. Of course, the demo will likely be the most buttoned-up and prepared presentation the provider offers, but it should be a good glimpse into their customer service. 

Connect Integrations

Your ideal VoIP provider should offer integrations to connect your phone system with other platforms. This unifies your communications tools, houses them in one simple dashboard, and increases productivity amongst your staff. They’ll no longer spend time bouncing from one app to another, deal with downtime due to technical difficulties, or have disjointed communications across a number of apps. 

If a provider does not offer any supplemental integrations, you may want to look elsewhere. 

One common integration is a VoIP and Microsoft Teams integration. Enhance your current Microsoft Teams platform and add advanced call features, native within the app. Gain valuable insight into your team’s performance with additional call reporting features that Teams lacks. 

A VoIP Integration augments your staff’s ability to communicate and provides them with the advanced Cloud PBX functionalities they need to be efficient.

Explore Their Plans and Pricing

VoIP is not (and should not be) a one-size-fits-all solution. Does your business have the same exact business model and goals as the business next door? Probably not. 

Why then would you want a provider who only offers a cookie cutter solution for their clients?

Your VoIP provider should be transparent about both what they offer and how much it will cost. If not, you have to wonder what they’re hiding. Ask for and explore their plans and pricing.

Once you receive that, you should be able to make an informed decision about what is best for your company. If you’re still unsure, don’t sweat it. Your VoIP provider should offer a technology consultant who can clear up any questions at this point. 

Selecting Your VoIP Provider

 Now that you have a general idea of how to select the right VoIP provider for your business, you can feel empowered as you search. 

At S-NET, we offer each client a dedicated project manager and technology consultant, ensuring each of our clients receives the attention and expertise they deserve. Our personalized, white-glove service, coupled with our customizable platforms make us your ideal VoIP provider. 

Ready to upgrade your communications, or looking to ask a few questions? Contact us today for a free demo. 

 

Preparing to Switch to VoIP

Whether you’re ready to switch to VoIP or just considering it as an option, preparing for the switch can seem like a hassle. For many small businesses, same outdated PBX system has probably been in use for decades. 

Upgrading your traditional phone system  to a VoIP phone system comes with clear benefits, like cost savings, easier maintenance, and enhanced scalability, but how exactly do you upgrade? 

Prepare to switch to VoIP and enjoy all it has to offer with us as we walk you through just 4 simple steps.

Plan for the Switch

While it may seem like a daunting task, you can rest easy knowing that a switch to VoIP is likely a much easier change than you’re used to. 

With a traditional, analog PBX system, making any changes, switching locations, or adding new users is a tremendous (and costly) hassle. Requiring the installation and configuration of physical analog lines, any modifications to your former telecommunications system were likely costly and time consuming. 

With VoIP however, you can expect the installation to take significantly less time and money. VoIP systems only require a reliable internet connection, not any additional expensive hardware. Our engineers estimate an average install can be completed within one business day.

Now that you’ve got an idea of what to expect, you must also prepare your team for the switch. VoIP phone will offer them new features and functionality that they will need to be trained on, and you may also receive updated phones, which will require training as well. As a heads up, during the switch, you may lose connectivity, this shouldn’t take too long, but let your team know so they can plan accordingly. 

Prepare Your Network and Equipment

While switching to VoIP does not require any additional hardware, you may find this to be a good time to upgrade your outdated phones anyway. Upgrading to an advanced phone or headset unlocks even more features of a VoIP system, giving your team even more freedom to do their jobs. 

Take this time to prepare your equipment. Do you have enough to support all of your users now and any future hires? If your team will be taking their work on the go with the power of VoIP, do you have enough hardware for them on the road/at home and in the office? 

You’ll also want to confirm that your network can support a cloud phone system. In an overwhelming majority of cases, our clients already have a strong enough network. 

VoIP requires about 100 kbps or .1 mbps, so your network will almost certainly hold up, but you may want to check your network speed just in case. 

Select a VoIP Provider

Almost just as important as making the switch to VoIP is selecting your VoIP provider. When making your choice, be sure you partner with a company that offers the services your business needs, as well as the appropriate level of customer support.

At S-NET, we’re proud of our customer retention rate and white glove customer service. We assign one dedicated technician to each account, ensuring our clients get the care and attention they deserve. 

Your VoIP provider should be trustworthy, transparent, and be able to prove their success. 

Train Your Staff

Once you’ve selected a provider and picked an install date, you will need to train your staff. 

Thankfully, making the switch to VoIP is a relatively easy one, so your team will pick it up in no time. 

We suggest going over the new functionalities afforded to your staff with a VoIP phone system. Key features like call routing, call parking, and call forwarding may require some training. View a full list of VoIP features to understand what to expect and identify key features for your business. 

Enjoy the Benefits and Freedom of VoIP

There you have it! Switching to a VoIP phone system should be a seamless process that offers your business enhanced communications. 

With the right partner on your side, the transition is quick, easy, and most importantly, saves you money over time. 

If you’re still on the fence about whether or not switching to VoIP is right for your business, contact our sales team for a free demo today

 

UCaaS: Everything You Need to Know

As the world of telecommunications and technology continues to evolve, keeping up with the latest trends can become overwhelming. The newest and most preferred business communications solution on the market is UCaaS or Unified Communications as as Service. 

The ultimate business communication tool, UCaaS is taking businesses by storm. But, what does it even mean? How is it different from what’s already on the market? We took a look at the ins and outs of UCaaS, and explain everything you need to know. 

What is UCaaS?

Unified Communications as a Service. Simple, right? 

Not so much. 

In order to fully understand the depth of UCaaS and the benefits it provides, you must first understand unified communications. In short, “unified communications” is the interconnected framework of all forms of communication that your company currently uses. 

All of the messaging, software, video chat, and phone systems your company is currently juggling? House all of those under the same roof, with the same application and you’ve achieved unified communications. 

Now that you’ve got that, don’t get thrown off by the addition of “as a Service” at the end. “As a Service” just implies the delivery method of your service and software. Similar to SaaS (software as a service).

UCaaS draws much of its functionality from VoIP phone, but does expand upon it. 

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How UCaaS Works

UCaaS serves to streamline your communications tools. One simple solution across your entire platform, UCaaS provides real-time communication, including voice, text, and video, over the internet. 

Since it is powered by your internet network, you most likely do not need any supplemental hardware or equipment to power your communication. 

VoIP phone provides the base functionality for all UCaaS systems, and would rightfully be considered the predecessor to UCaaS. VoIP converts voice data (like phone calls and voicemail) into small data packets that can easily be transported and interpreted. Transmitted through the cloud, this data can be sent virtually anywhere. 

UCaaS expands upon VoIP by blending video, text, and voice communication. 

The Benefits of UCaaS

Save Money

Despite how new and advanced this technology is, it does not come with a shocking price tag. In fact, users who switch their business communications tools to one UCaaS platform experience savings over time. 

If you have an outdated PBX system, upgrading to UCaaS reduces your maintenance costs over time. Gone are the days of bulky hardware and expensive upkeep on old, ancient machinery. Instead, maintaining your UCaaS platform is significantly cheaper and easier. 

Not only that, but you’ll also realize cost savings due to unifying your communications apps. Ideally, your UCaaS platform should tackle:

  • Audio and phone conferencing 
  • Online meeting apps
  • Text messaging
  • Internal IT Management
  • Internal file sharing
  • On-premises telephones

 

With all of those apps under one system, you no longer need to pay separate subscriptions for these services. Your finance department will thank you for reducing the number of invoices they handle each month. 

Work From Anywhere Technology

Of course, since beginning to return to normal business operations, work from anywhere technology is less of a hot ticket item for many businesses. Despite this though, remote work is here to stay. Its benefits have already been proven, and, like it or not, companies all over the world will continue to adopt at least a hybrid business model. 

Do not take work from anywhere technology for granted, even if your company is returning to in-office work. 

Thankfully, UCaaS seamlessly grants your employees the freedom to work from anywhere in the world. With no need for analog wires physically connecting your phones and offices, your employees are no longer tethered to their desks. 

Don’t forget, switching to a UCaaS platform shouldn’t require any extra hardware, so your employees truly can work anywhere they have an internet connection. 

Streamline your Tools with UCaaS

As we mentioned, a reliable UCaaS platform should unify all of your communications tools. This means you can delete all of those countless apps your employees are using everyday, once and for all. 

Streamlining your communications significantly increases employee productivity. They no longer waste time bouncing from one app to another, trying to keep them all straight. Similarly, your organization is less prone to experiencing downtime. With so many apps and tools to keep track off, chances are, one of them is malfunctioning. 

Reliable Endpoint Security

As more and more organizations adopt a work from anywhere model, securing your organization’s critical data becomes a bigger and bigger concern. 

With UCaaS, you can rest assured that you have an ironclad security system, supported by Next-Generation Firewall. This security goes well beyond traditional IP address and port-blocking security to provide you with strong enterprise grade protection. 

With enhanced application visibility and control, you can allow, deny, or restrict access to individual users, or your organization as a whole. With our best-in-class Firewall and security, your organization is as secure as it gets. 

Quickly Scale with UCaaS

As you’ve probably picked up by now, UCaaS’ virtue lies in its simplicity. Scaling and growing your business with UCaas is no exception!

Enjoy the beautiful simplicity of scaling and adding new users instantly with a cloud-based UCaaS platform. All you need to worry about is having a stable internet connection and you are good to go. 

Not only is adding new users seamless, but you can add entire new locations or regions with just the click of a button. 

Enhanced Insights and Analytics

With all of your communication/file sharing taking place within one software, extracting data and monitoring KPIs could not be easier! 

Instead of bouncing from dashboard to dashboard, you’re able to easily explore all of the data that you need to inform your decision making. Monitor calls, internet activity, messages sent, emails, and much more!

Your Business’ Bottom Line

As a small business owner, keeping up with the latest technology likely falls pretty low on your priority list. If it even makes the list. We understand. That’s why it is so important, particularly for small businesses, to find a reliable technology partner. 

Your technology, including your UCaaS, should help you overcome challenges, not create new ones.

At S-NET, we go the extra mile and truly provide our clients with the white-glove customer service they deserve. We serve thousands of users, and experience over 99% reliable uptime. 

Contact us to upgrade your business communications and achieve your business goals. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Using Your Technology to Overcome Business Challenges

Now at the tail-end of a global pandemic that turned our worlds upside-down for the better part of two years, organizations across the world are recognizing an entirely new set of challenges to overcome. 

Consumer demands are evolving day by day, and as we continue to enjoy loosening COVID restrictions, the way we work and address those demands will never be the same. In order to remain competitive, business owners and IT managers across all industries must adapt and utilize features of their telecommunications system to thrive. 

Client Expectations are Routinely Evolving

Customer service is a little bit like the phrase “if you give them an inch, they’ll take a mile”. As technologies evolve to allow businesses to provide even better customer service, suddenly your customers expect even more. 

After over a year of heightened stress, when almost everything felt business-critical, those expectations only rose. Customers were simply experiencing more problems and obstacles themselves, and expected almost immediate, personalized care from their providers. As a provider with many customers, that easily became one of the biggest, earliest, and longest-standing new challenges. 

As a business owner or manager, fear not. Your telecommunications system should come equipped with advanced features perfect to help you address the evolving needs of your customers. Don’t have a powerful cloud-based phone system? Check out our list of VoIP features and contact our team of dedicated tech consultants today. 

Once you get under the hood of your VoIP system, you can use features like our advanced reporting and analytics to dive into the nitty gritty of your business. The more you can understand about how your business really operates on a day to day basis, the better you can address your customer needs. For example, take a look at when you have the highest call volume, are you adequately staffed? Are many of your calls shorter than you think they ought to be? Are callers following your IVR or abandoning it? These are all questions your VoIP system can answer for you. 

The Rise of Remote Work

Another glaring obstacle to overcome as of late is the rise of remote work, which is here to stay. Though the noticeable rise in productivity, increased morale for employees, and reduced operating costs for business owners, a remote workforce does come with its cons as well. 

Chief amongst them obviously being the inability to meet in person for efficient conflict resolution. Be it technical difficulties, a brainstorming session, team-building, or hammering out the final details of an important proposal, meeting in person just sometimes cannot be beat. 

Fortunately, a reliable cloud-based communications system can easily give you the next best thing, digitally bridging gaps and connecting worlds. Not only that, but a powerful, industry leading VoIP phone system can provide the advanced call center features your business needs to weather this storm and beyond. 

Manage your cloud phone system and monitor it, in real-time from one desktop and mobile application. Add new users instantaneously as your business scales. Make and receive high-quality calls and video meetings from anywhere in the world. While it may not be the same as sharing an office, you can rest assured that you telecommunications system is working hard for you. 

Support your employees and business needs at this time by upgrading your connectivity. Consider switching to 5G, scaling up, or fortifying your network with Next Generation SD-WAN and built in firewalls. 

Increased Focus on Security and Technology

Internet scams and attacks are as old as the internet itself. As the world wide web has expanded and grown in sophistication, so too have the bad actors who execute these dangerous attacks. 

Today, identifying a malicious email can be almost impossible, with cyber criminals embedding viruses in new and clever ways. Through the use of social listening, they can gain access to your personal devices. From there, they’ll observe the conversations you have with people close to you and replicate a real correspondence almost exactly. The sophistication of these phishing attacks and data breaches can be truly overwhelming. The damage they inflict on you personally, or your organization as a whole, can be catastrophic. 

Not only are cyber criminals getting savvier, we are collect and share more information online than ever before. Every piece of gated content, every “contact us” form, each discount code and so much more comes at a price. Your personal data. The more we collect, the more criminals can take. 

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Your customers demand you take proper care of their sensitive data, whether they know you’ve collected it or not. Implementing a secure SD-WAN solution with Next Generation Firewall provides your business with ironclad security built right in (among the dozens of other benefits of switching to SD-WAN). 

Keeping up on regulatory scrutinies and compliances, like HIPAA, GDPR, and the FCC, is a good general practice to adopt as well. Stay up to date on a regular basis as laws and regulations evolve to ensure your business remains compliant. 

Further Expectations of Transparency

Considering the growing issue that is cyber security and how to combat the sophistication of new attacks, it’s no wonder that customers expect transparency. Wherever and however you collect customer data, you must treat it with care.

In the European Union, the recent passing of the GDPR  has designated a framework for collecting and processing personal data. The GDPR sets aside 7 key principles, the first of which includes transparency. The purpose of this first-of-its-kind regulation is so European citizens can fully understand how their data is being used and to easily file a complaint if it has been misused. 

Just under three  years after implementation, the GDPR is largely considered to be a success. Though it is regulated by the EU, even US based companies must comply, or risk having their content blocked. 

This shift towards a demand for transparency signals a greater shift in personal opinions and values. Your customers will continue to demand transparency, regardless of where you operate or what the law is. You must, at any time, provide documentation proving that you handle customer data appropriately. In essence, you must not only protect their data, but also “show your work.”

As a business owner or data collector yourself, you must find a suitable balance between making data collection easy for you, but impossible for an outsider. 

Humanizing the Tech Space

Despite talk of automation, 5G, the internet of things, and various other advancements in technology, you simply can not automate customer service. Your technology should be one tool of many in your customer service toolbox. 

Another delicate balance to strike here, customers want automation when it’s convenient, as is the case with IVRs or virtual assistants, but they want a personalized white-glove service as well. It’s not easy to appeal to both, but nothing worth doing is easy anyway. 

Put your technology to work for you as you overcome this challenge. Consider employing chatbots, AI, personalized tokens in communication, to name just a few of the options out there for you. 

Keep in mind that above all, your customers want simple and relevant customer service. Whether they’re reaching out to you seeking help, or you’re reaching out to them with a marketing communication, be sure that you provide them with easy to understand information on the topic they’re interested in. Bombard them with jargon or information that is unrelated, and you may just turn a customer away. 

The Bottomline

Of course, you understand your customers more than anyone else. Exercise your best judgement. Your technology is just one tool of many to help you overcome some of the challenges facing businesses today. 

The challenges plaguing businesses today can be daunting. Having a trusted cloud-based communications partner, like S-NET Communications, can help you overcome them. We have over 50,000 users in our system from over 3,000 organizations. Give us a call today for a free evaluation of your current system, and a demo of truly what your technology can do for your business. 

 

9 Common VoIP Misconceptions

We’ve all heard some of the common Voip misconceptions, like “it’ll overload my network.” But, How true are they? VoIP is quickly becoming the dominant platform for phone communications, and for good reason. The right VoIP solution can give your team a significant boost in productivity and can dramatically improve your customer interactions.

However, despite its mass adoption amongst businesses across the world, VoIP is still shrouded in some mystery. We’ve broken down 9 of the most common VoIP misconceptions so you can rest assured that you’re fully informed.

As you discover more and more of the benefits of VoIP, contact us for a free evaluation of your current phone system.

1. It will be hard to set it up.

Wrong! VoIP phone is super easy to set up. In fact, it takes significantly less time, capital, and equipment than setting up a traditional premise-based phone system. With most VoIP phones, setup is as quick and easy as plugging your phone in. Seriously, that’s it. 

2. VoIP is only for high-tech companies. 

While VoIP tends to be adopted at a higher rate by tech companies, its benefits reach all industries. Healthcare clinics, dealerships, shipping and logistics companies, restaurants, dental offices, legal offices, are all happy S-NET VoIP customers, just to name a few. Companies large and small, from coast-to-coast all benefit from VoIP.

3. VoIP will overload your network. 

Will VoIP slow your internet down? Not at all. You only need about 100 Kbps to support VoIP, which most businesses have far surpassed. Most internet speeds are calculated in Mbps, and 1 Mbps is 1,000 times faster than 1 Kbps, so you can rest assured that your internet will operate just fine. 

4. VoIP is less secure than premise-based phones. 

Because it is hosted in the cloud, it’s understandable that you may have concerns about how secure VoIP is. However, VoIP is as secure as a traditional phone system. All you need is a stable internet connection to secure VoIP calls. Conversely, premise-based phone systems require you to build and maintain their infrastructure. 

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5. Advanced Call Center features are expensive. 

VoIP’s many advanced features, like custom ring strategies, click to dial, auto attendants, and call monitoring may seem expensive, but actually aren’t! In fact, your VoIP phone system can actually save you money! Up to 30% on your total phone bill. 

6. VoIP calls quality is poor. 

So long as you have a stable internet connection, your call quality will also be stable. There is no evidence to support that VoIP calls are poor quality! In fact, in many cases, users report even higher phone quality after switching to the cloud. 

7. You need to get a new phone number. 

Nope! We allow for number porting, so you can bring your old numbers with you! Or, if you’d prefer, you can set any available custom number you want, including area code, regardless of where you’re located. 

8. Upgrades cost a lot. 

Upgrading and scaling your VoIP phone system could not be easier! Most VoIP providers offer a simple $X per user per month model. With this easy and predictable model for adding new users, you’ll always know what to expect as you scale. On average, this price hovers around $25/user/month.

9. You need to buy new equipment. 

Still using an analog phone system? No worries! You can easily modernize your current phone system so it will work with VoIP. All you need is an analog telephone adaptor (ATA)!

The Bottom Line

Clearly, misconceptions galore surround VoIP phone. As technologies continue to advance and evolve, these common VoIP myths and misconceptions will only snowball into more and more outlandish claims. 

While VoIP is in general a much simpler telecommunications solution, that does not mean you can “go it alone.” As is the case with any technology, you’ll need a trusted partner to guide you as you modernize and maximize your communications. 

S-NET is Chicagoland’s preferred total cloud solutions provider. We offer a full suite of cloud-based telecommunications services, all of which are fully customizable to meet your specific needs. Contact us today for all of your cloud communications needs. 

 

11 VoIP Stats You Must Know

VoIP seems like it’s kind of taking over the world lately. With millions of workers transitioning from their offices to working on their couch in PJs, most have enjoyed the freedom of VoIP. However, despite its prevalence, not very many people know much about VoIP.

Businesses all over the world are turning to VoIP everyday, but just how much will it grow? Since VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) is the talk of the town, we looked into just that, and 11 other statistics you must know about VoIP!

The Hosted VoIP market is expected to grow by 20% in the next 7 years.

We couldn’t keep you waiting for too long! Hosted VoIP is expected to see a rate of growth of at least 20% by 2027. This is largely due to communications and technology becoming more sophisticated over time, but there are several factors driving the growth of VoIP.

Source: Global Market Insights

Users Who Switch to VoIP Can Save up to 40% on Local Calls.

There’s some of the money we said you’d find at the bottom. The good news is you don’t even have to jump off a bridge (really, that would be kind of weird). Users who switch to VoIP enjoy an average savings of about 40% per local call.

Source: TechAdvisory

Savings with VoIP

83% of Enterprise Workloads are in the Cloud.

LogicMonitor predicted that 83% of workloads would be conducted in the cloud. This is a dramatic increase from just 3 years ago when only around 68% of workloads were conducted in the cloud. Public cloud use saw the largest increase with a 10% jump over 3 years.

Source: LogicMonitor

The Global Unified Communications Market Will Register a CAGR of 16.8% from 2019 to 2025.

Compound annual growth rate (CAGR) is a formula used to find what an investment yields on an annually compounded basis. Basically, it measures how much your investment earns you. If you’re not into finance, take our word for it, 16.8% is pretty good!

Source: Grand View Research

Unified Communications Still Has a Whole Lot of Growing Left.

The unified communications market size, which includes VoIP, was valued at $56.33 billion in 2018, and expects to reach as high as $167.1 billion by 2025.

Source: Million Insights

3 Billion Projected Mobile VoIP Users by 2021.

Now more than ever, we’re taking VoIP on the go. 3 billion users are expected to take their unified communications on the run with them and access their business or personal VoIP features via a mobile phone or tablet.

Source: Hosting Tribunal

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78% of Small Businesses Have Adopted Cloud Computing by 2020.

More than 75% of all small businesses in America have already switched to cloud computing. We know, we know.. “Would you jump off a bridge just because everyone else was doing it?” We would if there was a ton of money at the bottom.

Source: Microsoft

Users Who Switch to VoIP Save up to 90% on International Calls.

Companies with a global presence can now make calls for literally pennies on the dollar. At this price, you might as well just make a few calls across the world just because you can. Get a pen pal or something.

Source: TechAdvisory

The Global VoIP Industry Earned $14.1 Billion in 2020.

The global VoIP industry earned $14.1 billion in revenue in 2020. Though it’s been around since the 90s, VoIP did not start to see any significant growth until about 2005. Since then, it’s been full speed ahead for VoIP.

Source: IBISWorld

1,088 VoIP Businesses in the United States.

There are almost 1,100 VoIP businesses and providers just in the United States. Be sure you do your research, and know what to look for when selecting the right vendor. After that, watch your company take flight with VoIP!

Source: Finances Online

82% of Companies Report Cost Savings After Switching to the Cloud.

82% of all companies who switch to cloud computing and VoIP discover that they save money. That’s more R&D, more engineers, a company trip, more cash registers.. Anything you want it to be! What would you do with all of your extra money?

Source: Microsoft

Users who Switch to VoIP Save up to 30% on Telecommunications Costs.

Taking into consideration all of the different ways VoIP saves you money, it averages out to be about 35%. What would you do with 30% more money laying around?

Source: Finances Online

Be More Than A Statistic

We weren’t kidding when we said that VoIP is taking over the world. Each day, more and more businesses make the switch to cloud telephony and experience proven, tangible benefits.

S-NET can provide your company with a perfectly tailored, custom-fit VoIP solution built to provide you a more reliable and affordable phone system. Contact us today to for a free evaluation of your current system, and to see where the power of VoIP can take your business.

Choosing Between Cloud or Analog Phone

Are you sure you’re getting the most out of your phone service? Looking to upgrade your old legacy system? Choosing between a hosted or on-premise system? The number of options for what type of phone system you have and how you deploy it can certainly get overwhelming. Take a deep breath, grab a cup of tea (or something else yummy) and don’t sweat it. 

We understand that the options can seem endless and the differences between them aren’t always crystal clear. Throw in a few confusing acronyms here and there and understanding how your phones work can feel like speaking a different language. We’re here to help. 

There are, of course, pros and cons to choosing both a hosted phone system and an on-premise system. We’ll break these down, provide some use cases and best practices, and help you determine whether a hosted phone system or on-premise system is best for your business. 

What is a Hosted Phone System?

A hosted phone system, also known as hosted cloud, virtual phone system, or just a cloud phone system, is exactly that. Hosted in the cloud. Calls are made, whether incoming or outgoing, through an internet connection, as opposed to using physical wires.

The only hardware needed for a cloud phone system to operate successfully are your office phones or headsets. Everything else is powered through the worldwide web and your VoIP provider. Luckily, most business phones support a hosted system, so you can probably continue to use the same equipment you have. Or, if you’re feeling like upgrading everything all at once, you can take this time to upgrade your phones as well. 

If you already have a traditional PBX (Private Branch Exchange), you can utilize SIP trunking to convert to the power of VoIP and a hosted system 

What is an On-Premise Phone System?

An on-premise phone system is powered by physical equipment and hardware that is stored somewhere on your property. Most on-premise phone systems simply keep their PBX in their office headquarters.

The equipment needed to run your premise-based phone system can be both bulky and costly. In many cases, it requires an entire closet or room within your workspace to keep all of the boxes and wires organized. 

It’s important to note that you own and are therefore responsible for maintaining the physical hardware when using a premise-based phone system. This includes regular maintenance and patches, any outages, and adding new physical equipment as you scale. Owning your own equipment does give you a level of total control that renting or leasing cannot offer you so be sure to weigh your options when choosing between the two. 

Choosing between Hosted Phone and an On-Premise System

Clearly, there are several reasons why one would prefer a hosted phone system over an on-premise system, and vice versa. So, how do you choose which is best for your business? 

First, take a deep, introspective look at where your business is now, and where you hope it will be. What are your goals and how can telephony help you achieve them?

Now that that’s taken care of, examine the features and offerings of both a cloud-based phone system and a premise-based phone system. Which features are critical for your business, and which can you live without? 

Installation

Mentioned earlier, one of the largest differences between a hosted phone system and premise-based systems is the requirement (or lack thereof) for equipment. Premise-based systems must house physical equipment somewhere within their workspace. A cloud-based system does not require any extra equipment. All you need is a phone and an internet connection. 

Installing an on-premise phone system requires a much larger initial investment. All of that equipment costs money, with prices ranging around $4500 for just 5-10 lines. For larger organizations with several hundred, or even thousand users, that cost can add up quickly. A cloud-based system that does not require that initial hardware is therefore much cheaper to install up-front. 

It is also important to note that installing an on-premise phone system takes much longer than a hosted system. Depending on the size of your business, physically configuring your equipment will take time, and may interrupt your business operations. Keep in mind that you will be unable to place or receive calls during this time. 

S-NET Newsletter

Scaling your phone system

For an on-premise phone system, scaling is quite similar to installing a new system. You’ll need to purchase more equipment, install it, and add it to wherever you house the rest of your phone equipment. Overtime, you may even outgrow your space.

Each new user you add to your system will require new hardware. As your team scales up, your on-premise phone system will have to grow, too. Sometimes, you may only need one extra seat but have to buy large packs of equipment that can accommodate several more users. 

A cloud-phone system, on the other hand, can be scaled with the click of a button. Adding users is done so instantly, allowing you to continue with your normal business operations interruption-free. 

Using your Phone System

Beyond just installing and scaling your phone system, on-premise phone systems vary from hosted-phone systems in their day-to-day use as well. 

Be sure to consider how your team will use your phone system each day, both today and in the long-term. If one solution isn’t an absolutely perfect fit for today, but would make the most sense for achieving your business goals, you may want to consider implementing it now. 

By far, the largest difference between a hosted phone system and a premise-based system is that a hosted system allows users to work remotely via the cloud. So long as your employees have a reliable internet connection and VoIP, your team can conduct work from anywhere in the world. Difference between hosted and premise

A premise-base system demands that all employees (who want to use the phone, of course) do so while it is plugged in to your PBX, which is housed somewhere in your office. These employees can NOT work remotely.  

Maintaining your phone system

Regular maintenance for your phone system is non-negotiable. Premise-based systems and hosted systems are maintained differently. 

As the owner of premise-based phone equipment, it would be your responsibility to maintain it. This includes regular patches and updates, and technical breakdowns, and of course, adding new users. 

Cloud-based phone systems are maintained by your VoIP provider. Whoever you select as your partner can set their pricing however they like, but it’s typically done on a $X per user per month structure. Prices vary across vendors and what they offer, but in general, is less than the cost of owning equipment, to a certain point. Of course, the more users you have, the more your monthly fee will be. 

How to Choose the Right Phone System for Your Business

As you can see, each phone system has its own set of pros and cons. Weighing your options can seem like a hefty task. How do you choose the right phone system for your business? 

  1. Cost- what can your business afford? Is a large up-front installation fee cost-prohibitive? Perhaps a premise-based system isn’t for you? Does the thought of a monthly fee for hosting your phones scare you? Do you have hundreds or even thousands of employees? If so, be sure to consider the recurring costs of a cloud-based system before signing a contract. The Bottomline: In general, cloud-based phone systems are more affordable than a premise based system, and are especially more affordable for small to medium sized businesses.
  2. Vendors- Selecting the right vendor for your hosted phone system is just as important as deciding between hosted and premise-based. Your vendor will be your go-to for all things related to your phone, so be sure you select a trustworthy, reliable vendor. A vendor with a 98% retention rate and over 3,000 happy customers is a great option (like us!).
  3. Your team- If you have a remote workforce, or ever plan to, a cloud-based phone system is essential for your business. Similarly, if you have multiple offices you may want to consider a cloud-based system as opposed to installing premise-based systems for each and every office. However, if you want total control of your system, and your team always works on site, a premise-based system might suit you best. 

S-NET is Here

As Chicago’s leading cloud-solutions provider, S-NET has the experience and expertise to support your business’ telephony needs. 

We’ve added and continue to support tens of thousands of users to our industry leading cloud communications platform, and have a 98% customer retention rate, with 99.999% uptime reliability. We’ve helped thousands of businesses just like yours. 

Whatever you decide, contact us today for a free evaluation of your current phone system. 

 

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