It’s not just about reducing call costs. The real power of Voice over IP (VoIP) is the flexibility it brings to your business communications. This includes both in the office and out in the world.

VoIP works by sending your voice calls across IP data networks rather than via traditional telephone lines. This is something that can naturally deliver significant cost savings. You can take advantage of cheaper long-distance call rates. You can also make the most of free internal and intra-office calls to help your people work more effectively as a team.

These cost savings alone were a major selling point in the early days of VoIP. However, the new wave of competition forced traditional voice providers to offer more attractive business rates to claw back some of this advantage. A VoIP phone still offers the flexibility of automatically switching between different voice providers to take advantage of the best rates for different types of calls.

VoIP today

Today, VoIP’s major attraction is that it puts the power and flexibility of an enterprise-grade phone system within reach of small to medium businesses.

For starters, an in-house IP PBX voice server like 3CX is much easier for a small business to manage than a traditional PBX. It offers an intuitive interface that can be administered by non-technical staff. For example, it’s easier to add, remove and reallocate numbers. It’s also easier to move lines on the fly. This ensures your business isn’t hampered by the limitations of your phone system. It also ensures you’re not reliant on external suppliers to make even the simplest of changes to your office voice network.

3CX is Windows-based, which means you can run on a physical server or virtualise it to become part of your existing IT infrastructure. At this point you can treat your VoIP phone system like the rest of your key computing infrastructure. That is, offering high availability and redundancy without investing in additional voice-specific hardware.

An IP-based phone system like 3CX is also far more scalable than a traditional phone system. It lets your business grow without fear of outgrowing your PBX investment.

More than meets the eye

Of course, a business-grade phone system isn’t just designed to let you manage a fleet of office handsets. It also lets you intelligently handle incoming and outgoing calls. Here an IP PBX can deliver a wealth of productivity-focused features. These include IVR and directing incoming calls into hunt groups, which ensure important calls don’t go unanswered.

The flexibility of VoIP also lets you look beyond physical handsets to a new generation of communication tools. “Soft phone” apps are available for computers, smartphone and tablets. These ensure a virtual desk VoIP phone is always at your fingertips.

It’s easy to tap into the power of your office voice system from anywhere. Meanwhile, incoming calls can be intelligently routed to the best person and device to handle the call. You can also tie your phone system into a Unified Communications platform. This allows you to arrange conference calls and tie into other business systems.

3CX integrates with WebRTC-based video conferencing. It also links with a wide range of software platforms including Exchange, Office 365, SalesForce, Microsoft Dynamics and Google Contacts.

If your phone system is holding you back then it’s time to consider what Voice over IP can do for your business.

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Adam S

Adam S is a technology expert with a passion for innovative ideas.