Kesher Communications Blog

Tech and VoIP Related Blog

12 Jun

Home Working with Hosted PBX

Posted in VoIP on 12.06.12 by Merlyn

Although VoiceOver IP has been around for a while, internet connections have only recently become fast enough to provide good call quality. Now, VoIP has become a real option for businesses looking at ways to improve their business model. In this article, we will explain how your company can make use of our Hosted PBX service and employ staff who work from home, while cutting costs.

What is Hosted PBX?

Hosted PBX is a service which gives you most of the features of a regular office-based phone system. For example, you can transfer calls, put calls on hold and divert calls. You also have access to advanced features which are often not included in office-based PBX systems, such as call queuing, call recording, and IVR Menu Systems. Rather than buying expensive PBX Phone Systems, you pay a monthly fee to rent a place on a Hosted PBX system. This allows for substantial money saving over buying a phone system.

Cut Costs

When you look at employing a home/remote worker (for example, to answer calls and make appointments), you need to be able to transfer incoming calls to them without incurring divert charges which can mount up over time. You also need to give the caller confidence that their call is being handled professionally. With a Hosted PBX system, calls are transferred using VoIP and the internet, which means there are no call transfer charges. And because the call control never leaves the Hosted PBX system, the caller still receives a professional service with features such as call queuing and music on hold. You also reduce costs by not having to pay for office space, heating and lighting for home workers.

Scalability

With Hosted PBX, you can easily setup additional users within a few minutes and theoretically, add an unlimited number of extensions. With a normal phone system, you would need to ensure you had enough phone lines to handle the number of calls you are receiving. Otherwise, callers would hear an engaged tone and hang up. With VoIP, you don’t have this limitation. Our Hosted PBX system can handle as many calls as you need to receive by queuing calls. We have extra capacity on our network to ensure call quality is always maintained and callers never hear an engaged tone. So, if you have an advertising run that’s more successful than you expect, or have an important event that creates unusually high call volume, you don’t need to worry. Our system will automatically increase queue sizes and the number of lines you are using, without any input from you.

Remote Working

Most companies choose to provide staff with a physical VoIP phone which looks like any other normal office phone. There are also options of using VoIP software-based phones which allow users to make/receive calls through the Hosted PBX system while they are on the road. In addition, when bad whether hits and most companies have to close their phone lines because staff can’t make it to the call centre, your company will stay open as usual because all your staff will be working from home.

If you have any questions on this article, or would like more information on how we can help you set up your first Hosted PBX service, please contact us or visit www.KesherCommunications.com

tags: , , ,

No Comments »

04 May

Help Your Business Stay Open During Bad Snowy Weather

Posted in VoIP Related Articles on 04.05.12 by Merlyn

Every year the snow affects people and businesses. According to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), in 2009, businesses lost an estimated £1.2bn because of bad weather.

This article was created to show how businesses can use relatively new technology to stay open during bad weather.

Remote Desktop and Cloud Computing

Although cloud computing is quite a new, the concept has been around for a long time. Two example of cloud computing are the Hotmail and Gmail email services. Emails are stored on large computers and accessible from anywhere in the world via the internet. So, in the event of bad weather, people are still able to access their emails from home.

Businesses can use this to their advantage. By storing information in a format that’s accessible online, during snowy weather, businesses can allow staff to work from home and avoid the need to drive to work.

Remote Desktop is a technology that’s part of the Microsoft Windows system. Small companies where each member of staff has a designated computer can use Remote Desktop to give staff access during bad weather. It can be used to give people fully access to their work computer from home. Microsoft Small Business Server builds on Remote Desktop, and allows users to simply select their computer from a list, and start work without even leaving the house. If a company does not have Small Business Server, or the technical knowledge to set it up, they can sign up for a free LogMeIn account. LogMeIn Free is a service that gives users secure access to their computer and is very easy to set up. If you want a higher level of access, you can sign up for LogMeIn Pro2.

Cloud Computing is just like Remote Desktop, except the desktop’s are stored by a cloud provider and staff access it via Remote Desktop or similar technology. Cloud Computing can give a higher level of flexibility and security. Usually, a professional cloud computing provider will keep backups of your files and have fail safes in place to ensure you are never without service. With Cloud Computing, the desktops are already accessible online and therefore available if staff need to work from home.

Hosted PBX and Phone Systems

In an emergency, the telephone is still the primary means of communication. Often during bad weather, call centres find it difficult to manage when staff cannot get to the office. Traditional office phone systems generally only operate within one building. If staff need to work from home, it would mean that calls would have to be transferred to the staffs’ houses which can be impractical and expensive. Hosted PBX is similar to Cloud Computing in that the main part of the phone system is stored on the internet. Incoming calls are received directly by the Hosted PBX system and then transfer over the internet using VoIP. This means that the transfers are free and can be to anywhere in the world. In theory, a company’s entire workforce could be home-based.

Hosted PBX gives a number of additional advantages over traditional phone systems. These can include Call Recording, Menu Systems, Voicemail and Call Queuing. And staff can use phones that look like standard phones so they won’t notice the difference.

Security

It is very important to make sure any project is implemented securely. Anti-virus and firewalls need to be installed and updated on all staff computers, including home computers. All passwords need to be complex and secure. Make sure no member of staff have simple passwords that can be easily guessed. Some businesses think that no one would want to steal their business information. But hackers can find simple passwords and use them to disrupt your business in a number of different ways. The most common at the moment is using your computer systems to send out junk emails which can blacklist your company and prevent your legitimate emails from being delivered.

This article was written by Dan Journo from Kesher Communications.

Please ask questions and check that the information is suitable for your business before using any of its advice.

tags: , ,

No Comments »