voip phone system for small business?
Hi, I found this site when searching for small business forum and was hoping someone here would be able to help me. (hope this is in the right section!) We are a sister company of a larger business which has been using the BT Business phone solution. Some of the more tech savvy guys have been recommending we switch to a voip system for a while now and I have just been given the green light to look into possibilities. We currently have 10 employees and are looking to add a few more to the team in 6-12 months. The current phone system from BT is up for renewal and I was hoping some people on this forum might be able to assist my search and help me look in the right places. Each employee also has an office mobile as well as their own desk extension numbers and voice mail. Our absolute requirements are voicemail, call forwarding and conference calling. We also deal with foreign clients a fair bit so some kind of international calling plan would be ideal. I know that the current system we have works for us but if we can get the equivalent or better for less then that would be great! I’m the most non tech-savy person in the office and unfortunately I’ve been tasked with coming up with possible alternatives to what we have as I have the most time available for research! My initial questions are as follows: 1. Do we get a seperate voip provider and purchase the kit like this: http://compare.ebay.co.uk/like/160717829470?var=lv<yp=AllFixedPriceItemTypes&var=sbar&adtype=pla and get our IT department to sort it all out (they are obviously not very keen on the extra work!!) 2. Would you recommend an all in one solution such as this: http://www.teliqo.com(currently the IT department’s front runner =) 3. What do you use if you have a similar number of people? (we are in recruitment so it’s very much constant phonecalls in and out of the office.) Thanks for your time and any pointers/recommendations are much appreciated -Jennifer Fielding
I run Cisco SIP phones using Voipfone’s service. Works really well for me…
Worth looking at
In general if your phone system is going to be used by more than 25 users a premise based solution will be your best choice. If you business phone system will have less than 25 users, you should look at both hosted and premise based solutions.
Once you hit around 15 phones, its more cost effective to install your own VoIP server but there is nothing wrong with using a Hosted Phone System.
Heres a little information.
Hosted Phone Systems mean that instead of installing and paying maintenance for your own in-office phone system, you are renting part of a much larger system. The deskphones connect through the internet to the large phone system. This means you only need one BT line for the internet. Although some of our clients have two lines so they have a backup.
We have clients using a dedicated broadband line with around 12 to 15 voip phones without any issues.
Alternatively, you can install your own VoIP phone system which is basically a normal computer. A £350 one should do. If its important, maybe a slightly more pricey one if you want to have features such as RAID which will ensure your phone system stays online if the hard disk stops working. You would install something like FreePBX (which is free ) http://www.freepbx.org/download-freepbx then connect FreePBX to a VoIP provider to make and receive calls.
We have some client that take the Hosted Phone Systems approach and we have some clients who take the in-house system approach. Both options give you access to VoIP services. However the in-house option gives you the ability to keep your existing BT lines if you wanted to and just make outgoing calls using VoIP to save a bit of money.
With regards to the actual deskphones, we recommend Polycom or Yealink which are both well built and good quality.
Kesher Communications 0161 820 8353 http://www.KesherCommunications.com