The Primary Reasons to Choose VoIP Services for Your Business

IP Telephony cloud pbx concept, telephone device with illustration icon of voip services

Is it time for an upgrade of your phone system?

Voice over Internet Protocol (or VoIP as it is more commonly known) is a telephony system that allows users to make and receive calls using a broadband internet connection rather than a conventional analog phone system. VoIP works by recording audio and converting it into a digital signal that can be transmitted over an internet connection. Recent years have seen a vast expansion of VoIP both amongst residential and commercial users, as VoIP phone systems tend to provide a higher level of service than traditional phone systems at a much lower cost. However, if your business still uses a traditional phone system, you may be unaware of the benefits VoIP can provide, and you may be wondering why there is so much talk about VoIP. If your company still utilizes an analog phone system, here are just a few of the reasons you should consider switching to VoIP.

VoIP Can Save You Money

One of the primary reasons that so many businesses are switching to VoIP phone systems is due to the substantial financial savings that doing so can represent. The fact is that traditional phone systems are expensive to set up, alter, and maintain. Not only are most set up and maintenance costs averted with VoIP, but also, placing calls is much more affordable using a VoIP system. Many VoIP phone systems include unlimited domestic calling for free, and many even include all of North America. When international calls are placed, it is at a much more affordable rate than offered by the mainstream phone companies, which can mean significant savings if you do a lot of international business. The great thing about VoIP is that you do not have to sacrifice call quality for these cost savings. VoIP systems provide clear sound quality that rivals traditional phone lines in most instances, depending on your internet connection.

VoIP is Easy to Install and Maintain

One of the greatest hassles of traditional phone systems is that they are difficult, costly, and time-consuming to set up as someone has to come and run wiring throughout your facility and set up the necessary hardware. Alternatively, setting up a VoIP phone system is often as easy as connecting them to your computer or internet connection, making it easy for you to set these systems up yourself. No hardware or software needs to be installed before you can start using your IP phone system.

It Scales Up and Down Easily

Another problem with traditional phone systems is that they can be difficult and costly to scale up and down. The fact is that it is not always easy to predict how many phone lines you will need to add in the coming year, or where you will need these lines in your facility. This can lead to costly changes if you need to add or move a line. With a VoIP phone system, adding a new line can be done instantly, wherever you need it, as soon as you bring on a new employee, and the phone line can just as easily be removed if they leave. Additionally, moving a phone line with VoIP is as simple as placing it where you need it to go, without the need for any rewiring.

VoIP Supports a Variety of Features

Another benefit of VoIP phone systems is they often come standard with a variety of features that are either extra, or not available, in a traditional phone system. Features that are included or available on many VoIP phone systems include: call holding, call transfers, caller ID, voicemail, visual voicemail, and conference calling. VoIP phone systems also allow for video conferencing, allowing you to conduct business meetings remotely, which can reduce travel expenses.

VoIP phone systems are truly transforming the way in which companies conduct business by providing a variety of useful benefits, only a few of which we have been able to highlight here. Contact us to learn more about VoIP and the reasons why you should consider converting your business to a VoIP phone system.

How Can You Have A Successful Backup Disaster Recovery (BDR) Plan?

Two businessmen looking at broken laptop, operating system crash - Backup Disaster Recovery (BDR) Plan concept

How will your plan hold up in a disaster situation?

When it comes to back and disaster recovery(BDR), one of the keys to making sure your business is still being able to operate efficiently is being prepared for any natural disaster or event. Not only is it important to make sure you have a BDR plan you can trust, but it is also important to make sure you are able to go through a test run so you will always be two steps ahead.

Before any type of disaster ever occurs, we want you to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do I really need a backup and disaster recovery plan?
  • Am I currently using a backup and disaster recovery plan? When was the last time someone tested it?
  • How long does it usually take to recover data from the current backup solution?
  • When there is downtime, how much money could I lose?
  • What is the average downtime for my business after a disaster? Can I afford to be down this long?
  • If a disaster strikes, will there be other copies of my data in another location that I can access?

What’s The Problem?

Not every disaster is going to be the same, and this means not every recovery process will be the same. Before you take any action, we want you to understand all the issues surrounding the disaster and your data. How will all of these issues impact you? Is the current issue impacting one system or is it impacting the entire system? Do you have any files that have been deleted? Are any of your systems and servers down?

What Are Your Goals?

When it comes to a BDR solution and a simple backup of your data, the major difference in a BDR is its ability to actually recover. This is why it is so important to know what your disaster recovery goals are. Do you plan to restore only your data? Do you plan to restore only the system? Do you plan to restore both? How much time do you plan to spend on recovering files before the system recovery begins? Once you determine if you want to spend time on the recovery process, you will want to make sure you have identified the systems that are the most critical.

The Recovery

When you are walking down the recovery road, you should make sure you follow the proper procedures. Which recovery procedure do you plan to follow? We encourage you to follow the recovery procedure that will give you the best opportunity to reach the goals you have set, including file restoration.

Once you have verified the recovery, you should make sure that there is a positive interaction with the users by ensuring the network connectivity is working. You will need to make sure everyone is able to access the files, resources, and other applications. If you need to restore your business’s original system, you should carefully decide what process will be better.

After you have answered the questions and created a backup and disaster recovery plan, you should take a moment and think about the process. Did everyone handle the recovery process the way you hoped they would? Do you wish you could have done things differently?

After you have answered these additional questions, you should be able to determine what caused the failure and what things still need to be addressed and corrected. It can be a wise decision to make notes of what mistakes were made and what things can be done in the future to avoid these mistakes.

If you are looking for backup and disaster recovery solutions, we are more than happy to provide you with a variety of options that will protect your data, whether it is in the cloud or on-premise. Contact us today for more information on BDR solutions.

Why VOIP Is the Perfect ‘Out-of-Office’ Phone Solution

Business woman using VOIP in a mobile phone out outdoors

How easy is it for your customers find you?

Email, chat, texting, and social media have brought us a long way, but in business you always need to have a phone number. For whole industries and tiers of your supply chain, the phone is the primary form of contact. For many businesses, certain things can only be confirmed on the phone or in person. And, of course, there must be a way for you to be contacted by clients or your boss.

Multiple Business Numbers

This means that you need a business number: A line of contact you can put on your website and business cards. A number you will almost always pick up during business hours. But this is easier for some professionals than for others. People who work at the same desk all day long have it easy, they can pick up their desk phone at any time during the regular work day. However, if you are a field service professional, visit clients, or travel often, you rack up a lot of ‘out of office’ hours where everyone must reach you at a second–personal cell–number instead.

Providing a Unified Company Number

Professional phone lines aren’t free. Businesses buy package deals but must still install the hard lines one by one to connect desk and office phones. On top of this, professionals who travel for business are often provided with company cell phones. In part to provide them the privacy of also having a personal cell if they choose to. This means that any professional with both a desk and a company cell carries the cost of two unique phone lines.

In the age of wireless technology, this is no longer necessary. VOIP, also known as internet phone, allows a business to provide each employee with exactly one phone number. A number that will follow them around on any device with internet access. Because you log into it like an app instead of needing a line or SIM card. This one little change from wired and cellular phones to internet phone simplifies so much about business communication.

Now, professionals who travel often or work in the field can give their clients and colleagues one number that can reach them any time during business hours. You can set it to ring through to your current device on a schedule or even schedule off-hours that go straight to voicemail. But it gets better.

Connecting In the Field

Staying connected while traveling is a constant search for signal coverage areas. Based on how 2-5G cell networks and wireless internet work these days, connectivity is almost identical between when a cell phone and a wireless hotspot can connect enough to make a call. But VOIP can do even better.

There are a great many places that have a wired and local wifi internet connection but do not have cell signal, and in these places, VOIP is always superior. No matter where on-the-go professionals find themselves, any device with an internet connection can make and receive calls, keeping you in touch almost everywhere.

Staying Connected in Emergencies

When traveling for work, equipment emergencies are the worst kind. If your laptop or cell phone break down on the trip, it could mean disaster. But accidents happen anyway. Your cell phone could fall out of your pocket, get soaked, or sat on and you would be left out of touch. Unless you have a VOIP number.

Most VOIP providers work like an app, where you can install and log into the VOIP platform then access your number from any capable device connected to the internet. Unlike a cell phone with a unique SIM card, VOIP numbers can be answered from your office desktop computer, your laptop, a tablet, your phone, or even borrowed device or hotel lobby computer. VOIP is the ideal phone number solution for emergencies in the field.

Traveling for work and working in the field both require you to be away from your office much of the time. But that doesn’t mean you have to give out your personal cell number or be tethered to a company cell. VOIP allows on-the-go professionals to answer one number from any device on any available network. For more information about how VOIP can improve your workflow, contact us today!

How Can Managed Service Provider (MSP) Help Your SMB?

Corporate Manager Pushing MANAGED SERVICES

Do you have a team of engineers to tackle your next problem?

Many small businesses and medium-sized businesses have to make the decision to seek help from local specialists and experts to help them solve various problems on an impromptu┬ábasis. The lack of clarity with the “fix it when it breaks” model can be very damaging to a promising business. Furthermore, this type of model does not provide the┬ánecessary functions an up-and-coming business will need, including the following:

  • disaster recovery
  • IT management
  • network security
  • applications management

If your small business is currently operating under a model that lacks the necessary expertise and key functions, this will likely mean you are falling behind due to the push towards mobility, the use of cloud applications, and operating in a complex business industry.

Where Can Managed Services Help Your Business?

A Managed Service Provider will have the necessary tools and experience to solve any issues you may be having, and any issues that may arise in the future. A Managed Service Provider(MSP) will take care of the main responsibilities of your business and allow your employees to focus on other key business operations.

A Managed IT Service provider will also allow a small business or medium-sized business to perform better even with fewer resources. A Managed Service Provider(MSP) will regularly evaluate your business’s IT infrastructure and the current network. The MSP will also perform repair and maintenance activities remotely, and this will include upgrades and updates.

Not only will the right Managed Service Provider(MSP) partner provide you with the proper protection if something breaks or fails. With the assistance of the right MSP partner and expanded availability, your small or medium-sized business will less likely experience any interruptions or downtime. Your SMB can also avoid employing more in-house IT workers as your business grows because the right MSP will provide you with the workforce your growing business will need.

You may need managed service to manage some of your basic technical needs or you may want to outsource the entirety of your business technology and IT infrastructure. The majority of MSPs will have a pay-as-you-go plan, and this means you will be able to get the services you need without breaking the bank. You can choose a plan that will align with your business needs and requirements.

Productivity Increase

When you partner with a Managed Service Provider, you can expect your business processes and systems to be simplified. A managed service provider will take on issues that come to light because of technology. How can a Managed Service Provider(MSP) take on these issues? An MSP will be able to successfully fight these issues through the use of monitoring and experience. Even before issues come to light, an MSP will be able to uncover the problems, carefully plan for them, and prevent them from becoming worse through all the elements of a managed service plan.

Reduce Downtime

An MSP is able to do more than uncover issues and track them; it can also predict how big of a threat each event may be. When an MSP is able to predict how dangerous an event may be, this will allow them to use a strategy that will prevent it from occurring in the first place. This means your SMB will be able to continue running with no interruptions.

Someone On Your Side 24/7

How much would you like having instant access to IT professionals and experts on a 24/7 basis? An MSP will not only give your business access to IT professionals, but your business will also have access to the following:

  • virus protection
  • firewall protection
  • infrastructure management
  • internet monitoring
  • disaster recovery

An MSP will have everything you need when it comes to monitoring and managing your IT needs. An MSP will also address any problems you are having, keep your business data safe, and ensure your business operation is functioning as it should be.

Are you ready to have an IT plan that will be a perfect fit for your business? Please do not hesitate to contact us today for more information on Managed Service Providers(MSPs).