We have all heard automated telephone greetings including statements such as, “This call may be recorded for quality assurance purposes.” There is increased recognition of the value to be gained from call recording today. Accordingly, there is a recognized need to move beyond the associated negative stigma and refer to it as voice documentation.

Email communication is an important part of the daily communication for most businesses today. Email is quick and efficient while providing a documented audit trail of the communication. However, when compared with voice communication, it misses the immediate real-time response and the between-the-lines meaning that is inherent to voice expression and tone.

By deploying voice recording in your business communication system you can gain the benefits of both worlds, maintaining the personal touch of voice communication while having documentation for future reference.

Whether you are an automotive, construction, education, healthcare, hospitality, industrial, or manufacturing organization, there are tangible benefits to deploying voice documentation. Here are five specific reasons why voice documentation is a valuable tool to protect and enhance your business:

  • Resolve Disputes  

With a voice documentation system, a misunderstanding between an employee and the customer can be quickly and professionally resolved. The voice document for the call can be easily retrieved and an extract of the call emailed to your client to confirm details.

  • Demonstrate Compliance  

Obtaining documentation of each interaction with a customer is often crucial. For many organizations it is necessary to demonstrate that regulatory guidelines have been followed.

  • Monitor Quality  

Review calls to ensure that all clients have been dealt with professionally at all times. Replaying past conversations is a great way to teach new employees and keep current employees trained.

  • Improve Performance  

Work with staff to develop their telephone and telesales techniques. In today’s highly competitive environment and the impact of social media’s instant reactions, delivering excellence in customer experience is paramount.

  • Share

Share conference calls and online meetings with business colleagues.

Voice documentation is available for analog, digital and VoIP business communications platforms. Integration into your existing telephone system is not only necessary, it is easy to do.

The advantages of using voice documentation are abundantly clear. When documenting all phone-based communications with your customers you can control liability threats, improve employee performance, enhance the quality of your client interactions and develop an archiving tool all in one shot.  Voice documentation is a simple way to ensure that your employees feel protected and knowledgeable at all times, enabling them to consistently deliver a better customer experience.

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Two-way radios play a more important role in industry, event management and emergency services applications than most people realize.

Two-way radios are available in mobile, stationary base and hand-heldportable configurations. These are half-duplex devices and are usually equipped with a push-to-talk button. Repeaters may be used to extend the range between radio units.

Trunked radio, a specialized repeater system, may be implemented to allow a large number of users to share a relatively small number of frequencies. One or more towers could be installed to support a trunked radio deployment.

Points to keep in mind:

  • Radio communications are not private, so don’t share confidential information
  • Keep messages short and ensure clear understanding of your communication
  • Repeat important messages back to avoid misunderstanding
  • Keep your radio powered off and charging when not in use
  • Industry Canada requires two-way radio frequencies to be licensed

VHF or UHF

Selecting the correct frequency type for the intended use of your two-way radios is very important.

  •  VHF radios have a longer wavelength and are mostly suitable for outdoor use in open areas.
  • UHF radios are suitable for indoor and mixed use. UHF, with its short wavelength is effective within metal and concrete sites, or heavily wooded outdoor areas.

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Given the growing complexity and options in the field of telecommunications, it is important to keep an eye on developments if you expect to keep a reasonable handle on planning for your short and medium term needs. Of course, defining your requirements is much more involved today than, for example, “I think we need 15 lines and 30 telephones.” Other considerations may include:

  • Voicemail

  • Voicemail to email integration

  • Unified Communication

  • Integration with CRM software

  • Contact centre users

  • Mobile users

  • Remote/work from home users

  • Multiple branch communications

  • Conversation recording

Premise Systems

Premise based telephone systems are well suited for larger organizations and those with the resources to support and administer on-site hardware. These are available in either Digital or VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) solutions.

Digital Systems

Premise based digital telephone systems may be equipped to support both analog and digital connections (trunks) to the outside world. Digital trunks or PRIs(Primary Rate Interface) will each support up to 23 voice channels. Internal workstation and other end points will be equipped with digital telephones. The system may also have analog station ports to connect other devices such as fax machines, door phones, etc.

Digital systems may also be configured as hybrid systems and include support for IP end points. This is often useful for the remote/work from home users.

VoIP Systems

VoIP (Voice over IP) systems may be equipped to support both analog and digital trunks as well as SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) trunks. Both IP telephones and analog devices may be supported internally. IP telephones would normally be supported by PoE (Power over Ethernet) switches rather than connecting to a power source at each end point.

Before ordering a VoIP system, have a network assessment performed to ensure your network is suitable.

Hosted Systems

Hosted, or Cloud-based VoIP systems offer sophisticated features without a capital investment. UCaasS (Unified Communication as a Service) is quickly becoming a popular option and certainly worthy of consideration. The ability to deploy this system using the operating budget makes it particularly attractive to small and medium businesses.

As in premise-based VoIP systems, a network assessment is a pre-requisite for a cloud-based system deployment.

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A clear definition of your security requirements is at the forefront of successfully deploying and using your system. This includes defining the characteristics of your environment and potential vulnerabilities.

Intrusion Security

An intrusion security system should be part and parcel of an overall security and loss prevention plan. Intruders seek out sites that offer high rewards with low risk of being caught. The “success” of the intruder’s activity is dependent upon such factors as time, detection, lights and noise.

Access Control

The sophistication of today’s multi-faceted access control systems enables integration with intrusion security and video surveillance systems. Together these integrated systems can help control the movement of people and assets.

Adequate planning is critical to the success of your system. To ensure compatibility with your existing IT infrastructure and any new components, collaboration with your IT staff is highly recommended. This will aid in deploying and maintaining a functioning, reliable system.

Video Surveillance

Either analog, IP based, or hybrid video surveillance systems are available. If you are starting with a new system, an IP solution gives you the most options and provides the potential for the best quality results.

Considerations for a successful system include:

  • Bandwidth

Your network may already have the required bandwidth. However, a network assessment is an important part of the planning process. Factors to consider include the type and number of cameras required, internal network parameters, and internet bandwidth.

  • Router

An appropriate internet router is required for remote viewing and system access. This may include a wireless component to complement any wireless access points for connecting with wireless cameras and viewing devices.

  • Switch(s)

A network switch or switches with Power over Ethernet (PoE) will reduce the need for locally powered cameras.

  • Computer

A suitable computer is required to manage the system and provide control for the cameras, recording and monitoring.

  • Viewing

Provide for both on-site and remote viewing of cameras. Prominently displayed monitors offer an effective deterrent.

  • Storage

Video storage requirements are dependent upon the number of cameras, resolution of the video, and how long the video files need to be kept. Using event-based recording such as motion detection can effectively reduce storage requirements.

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