Phone System Shopping List

Is your phone system outdated and inadequate for meeting your needs?

Legacy phone systems often impede business growth. They can be expensive to maintain, have confusing maintenance contracts and obsolete features. They’re also usually incompatible with newer technologies, such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP). Planning for a new office telephone system can sometimes be a daunting task. A phone system should be easy to understand and use. It should be scalable and able to interface with today’s popular mobile apps.

Here’s a checklist to help start the process:

  • How many employees do you have?
  • What is your business growth plan over the next five years?
  • What telephone system features will be required to support your growth?
  • What features will help you be more competitive?
  • Will you want your phone system on your premises, or migrated to the cloud?
  • How many phones do you expect to need?
  • Is a call center part of your business?
  • Must-have call center features: automatic call distribution (ACD) queues, real-time dashboard reporting, call recording.
  • Do you need voicemail, auto attendant, business hour rules, call detail records?
  • Will you need to port phone number(s) or acquire phone numbers?
  • Do you have access to broadband Internet?
  • Important system features to consider: voicemail, email integration, auto attendant, ring routing, business hour rules, call detail records, etc.
  • Other considerations: audio and video conferencing, text chat, etc.

For a no-obligation consultation, speak with one of our experts today:

or email sales@nutecelectrotel.com to arrange a complimentary appointment.

Is it time to update your business telephone solution?

What choices are available?

Legacy ISDN based telephone systems are still available, but the higher line rental costs are pushing IT managers to consider broadband-based VoIP solutions that provide better value for the investment. The choice of VoIP and SIP trunking offers increased resilience and flexibility that that will allow the system to change as your business needs evolve.

Major telecom companies still provide ISDN. However, as Internet services become increasingly more robust and reliable, SIP trunking is the fast-emerging technology to support voice services.

On Premise or Hosted? That is the question.

SIP trunking is both cheaper and more flexible than ISDN, making it the sensible choice for your business. The hardest choice is actually whether to choose to maintain an IP-PBX onsite or opt for a cloud-hosted solution instead.

There are pros and cons of both hosted and on-premise solutions. There are some fundamental differences to each of the systems. The move to an IP business phone system is beneficial regardless of which system is ultimately chosen. However, knowing the differences will lead to a better VoIP phone system and a higher level of satisfaction for the all involved.

On Premise:

  • Higher initial cost and set-up cost
  • Lower monthly cost after expenses are covered
  • Ability to use SIP trunks to get lower-cost calls
  • Having a premise system gives user control to create, adjust and delete users as desired
  • The current carrier may not have to be changed
  • Server ownership reduces expenses over time
  • Expansions may result in complicated projects depending upon the provider
  • The technician may need to be called for upgrades and patches on software
  • Loss of power or system failure will result in callers not being able to get through, which stops business operations unless you have a SIP provider

Hosted:

  • Lower initial equipment cost and set-up cost
  • Providers have more resources than users, so new feature sets are possible
  • New feature installation is handled by the provider to avoid confusion
  • Picking and canceling virtual numbers is easy and fast
  • Moving a phone system is easy. IP phone is plugged into a broadband connection
  • Patches and upgrades of the IP system are handled by the provider
  • Loss of Internet or catastrophic event has no effect on operations because calls can be sent to voice mail or mobile phone. This is because of redundancy within an off-site facility that has safeguards including back up power sources
  • Low monthly service cost
  • Easy to add extra lines
  • Upgrades and new features are included
  • Extended features, like conferencing, may come with additional costs
  • Connections and voice quality are a result of Internet connection
  • Loss of Internet results in loss of phone service (settings can be adjusted so that it goes to voice mail or routed to a cellphone)

Considering the positives and negatives for both the hosted PBX and an on-premise IP-PBX, allows a company to determine the best phone system based upon the setup of their organization and what risks they are willing to assume. Companies will benefit from one over the other, so it is a matter of making comparisons prior to choosing which one to have installed.

To find out more about which option is best suited to your business, speak with one of our experts today.

IP, digital, analog, telco, hosted, on premise, mobility and call centre, opex, capex…

Confused? Nutec can help!

For requirements ranging from basic small and medium telephone systems to full scale enterprise deployments with unified communications and collaboration, our team will design the appropriate end-to-end solution for you. These may include premise-based systems, hosted systems, or a combination of these.

Custom Designed for your Business and Your Budget

  • Our objective is to become a long-term trusted member of your technology team.
  • Not just the right features and solution, but also the right pricing model. More and more customers are wanting flexible monthly pricing models with price certainty and guaranteed service.
  • Technology changes rapidly as we know and by being a part of your team we can help manage and plan for your businesses changing needs.
  • We can offer information on new or different technology and focus on the big picture for your communication.
  • Started in 1977, Nutec Electro Tel, with its group of professionals, offers voice and security technology products and services to clients from Vancouver Island to Newfoundland.
  • Our clients span from small and medium to enterprise organizations.
  • Our solutions continue to fit businesses in education, government, health care, hospitality, manufacturing, commercial and retail.
  • With offices in Calgary, Camrose and Edmonton, augmented by strategic alliances, such as the NEC Dealers Association, across Canada.
  • Nutec Electro Tel can meet clients’ needs from system installations, upgrades, repairs, maintenance and service.
  • Our partnership approach includes a comprehensive support plan including ongoing training, management, governance and call centre expertise.
  • By developing a deeper understanding of our clients’ business, we can offer appropriate solutions in a timely manner.

We take pride in keeping open minds, listening carefully and developing an understanding and appreciation of the culture, strengths and challenges of those with whom we work.

Partnering with Nutec

Nutec understands the Telecommunication technology life cycle and resources required for a flexible Telecom Solution which is easily managed without being an ongoing burden to internal IT resources.

With this in mind, Nutec works with you from design to installation and then through ongoing operation to establish a partnership which will augment your internal management of the system as required.

If you are looking to upgrade any of your business technology systems, require a new system, require a quotation or additional information on our products and services, please contact us now to start the discussion.

Contributed by Trevor Naish

Voice Documentation

Protect your business, your employees, and your customers.

Productivity
Call reporting and recording can be used to monitor productivity as well as misuse of time and phone lines.

Cost Recovery
Some businesses can bill for their specific phone usage. Law firms are great examples of this type of business.

Customer Care
Traffic reports are useful to ensure customer care standards are adequately being met.

Revenue Generation
Phone calls can be tracked to generate revenue. Care facilities are a great example of this type of application.

Quality Control
Record and monitor the quality of calls to ensure that every phone call is being taken care of to your company’s professional customer service standards.

Performance Review
Call Records can be analyzed to improve agent performance and share relevant information with colleagues.

Compliance
Many businesses are required to comply with regulatory requirements regarding sensitive information.

Dispute Resolution
If an issue is to arise between employee and client over the phone, the call record can be easily extracted and analyzed to help resolve the dispute.

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.

Or email sales@nutecelectrotel.com for a professional consultation!

Contributed by Mike Szakacs

PLEASE HOLD

Have you ever called a business, started explaining what you wanted and been put on hold? Then when the reception picked up your line again you had to start at beginning? Sometimes you may have been put on hold multiple times. This is stressful! Stressful for you and the receptionist or person trying to assist you at the other end.

CUSTOMER CENTRIC STRATEGY

Today many businesses are focused on their customer, as they should be. One thought is that the customer wants to be answered by a live voice which is true, but they also want to be helped as quickly as possible in a non-stressful interaction. Answering the same call multiple times, putting callers on hold repeatedly and stressing out both ends of a conversation are not customer centric actions.

IF YOU CAN’T MEASURE IT, YOU CAN’T MANAGE IT

How many calls do you get a day? If you have multiple people answering calls, are they equally efficient? Do you need more staff answering at different times? How much time do callers spend on hold? How many callers hang up before achieving the goal of their call?

CALL CENTRE SOLUTIONS

You don’t have to be an airline to be a call center. If you have people calling your business, you have a call center. Maybe they are calling by email or text. Still a center where these calls are received. You also don’t have to be a large business to use technology in your call centre to improve interactions with your customers or improve conditions for your staff. If you have times of the day with more callers than people to answer the calls you could benefit from a more formal solution.

CUSTOMER CENTRIC TECHNOLOGY

Queuing calls when all your staff are occupied speeds up the actual call. Your staff do not spend time listening to partial requests. On hold messages can give some callers the information they wanted or direct callers to your web page or other service options. Visual displays let secondary or supervisory staff know that there are more calls waiting. Measurement lets you know if you are improving and meeting your goals. Staff are more relaxed because they don’t not hear phones ringing all the time and they are focused, one on one, with each individual call.

TAKE ACTION TODAY

Nutec helps plumbers, IT firms, municipalities, doctors, dentists and help desks with call centre technology, advice and solutions.

Watch this 7 minute video on call centre technology https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZlpIi4t5Fc

Call Nutec (800) 898-3336 for a discussion about your call centre.

Submitted by Trevor Naish

Communications technology constantly evolves.

To meet guest expectations in a competitive market, hospitality providers must rely on their communications solution. Not only does the technology platform need to be reliable, so does their provider and partner.

Nutec Electro Tel implements and supports hospitality solutions of all sizes throughout Western Canada. Our managed solutions approach provides reliability and peace-of-mind. We become members of our clients’ IT teams. Technical expertise and defined response times are expected and achieved.

Comprehensive hospitality solutions may include:

Guest Services

  • Contact Center
  • Wireless LAN
  • Information Analytics
  • IP Phones

Conference Services

  • Voice Conferencing
  • Video Conferencing
  • Hotel Sound Systems

Staff Productivity

  • PMS Interface
  • Hospitality Directory
  • Unified Communications
  • Interactive Voice Response

 Staff Mobility

  • Mobile Devices
  • Wireless Phones
  • IP DECT Solutions
  • 2-Way Radios

Property Safety & Security

  • Emergency Notification
  • Emergency Conference
  • Network Management & Security

Custom designed solutions fit your needs and your budget

A suitable solution may include on-premise, cloud-based, and hybrid components.

Funding choices include capital investment, competitive leasing, or operating expense.

Managed solutions help sustain system life cycles. This prepares for the future, and achieves maximum value.

Or email sales@nutecelectrotel.com for a professional consultation!

Hospitality Solutions

Contributed by Mike Szakacs

PHONE BILL DETECTIVES

How often do you pick up your detective tools and review your phone bill?

Do you know what to look for? Can you spot the clues in the pages of services and phone calls to Moncton and Tofino? Do you have comparables from other investigations and other providers? Are you spending too much? Are you held hostage by old contracts? Do you have the best combination of services and pricing to give your business the advantage?

Nutec Electro Tel has a team of experienced detectives available to work for you. We can compare Telus, Shaw and third-party services for you. We can find out if your telephone company is being faithful and let you know your options.

Orphan Location:

  • Many companies have old phone numbers being billed that they are not using. These can be old fax or modem lines.
  • Some companies are paying rental charges for equipment they no longer need or don’t know they have
  • Are all your lines under contract? You can pay more than double for uncontracted lines or long distance

Solution & Partner Vetting

  • What is better for your business? Purchase a phone system? Rent a phone system? Just rent the phones on a hosted/cloud option. There is no one size fits all option. Some companies need more functionality than others. Your budget may require a pay as you go option, or you may want reduced monthly operating costs.
  • What are your data options? Who is now providing internet in your area? Many customers can now greatly increase their speeds at the same or lower cost than they are paying today.

Protection Services. Improve your business and customer service.

  • Connect your branches to improve employee and customer interaction
  • Use time zones to lengthen your availability
  • Queue your calls to even out workload and customer experience
  • Toll free numbers

Nutec Electro Tel offers managed communication services. We don’t just sell hardware. We join your team and work with you on an ongoing basis to improve, improve and improve while keeping your overall costs competitive. By investigating your current phone costs, researching your business and reviewing new technology, solutions and pricing models we solve the crime of wasted expense and opportunity. Put one of our detectives on the case today!

Or email sales@nutecelectrotel.com and ask for a free consultation!

PHONE BILL DETECTIVES

Contributed by Trevor Naish

Too often organizations wait too long to replace out-of-date business telephone systems. Often they are satisfied as long as employees can pick up their handsets, hear dial tone, and make a call to just about anywhere. This has been the major strength of circuit-switched PBX systems since their introduction in the 1960’s. But nearly 60 years later, the workhorse simplicity of circuit-switched PBX has also become its major weakness. Now, packet-switched Voice over Internet  Protocol (VoIP) systems provide significantly more business value than merely placing and receiving calls.

Most small and mid-sized businesses rely heavily on their telephone system. Unfortunately, this part of their technology investment often takes a back seat to the computer network. Has this been your experience? If so, is it possibly inhibiting your business potential?

If you depend on your business phone system to maintain that critical connection with your customers,  suppliers and staff, it may be time to explore the options.

Key Benefits

Some key benefits, integral to a business, that IP communications can enhance are:

  • Productivity: Employees can communicate from their offices or from virtually any remote location, or  telework from home.
  • ROI: A broader base of personnel, customers, and business partners can access and utilize resources.
  • Customer Satisfaction: IP technology supports self-service capabilities and facilitates problem resolution. This makes for happier customers.
  • Business Process Improvement: Gone are the days of the monolithic PBX; today’s communications systems must integrate into business processes.
  • Competitive Edge: Enabling teamwork between different locations and distributed work groups reduces time to market for new products and upgrades.

Business Risks of Older PBX Systems

Organizations face numerous threats with older PBX systems. These threats not only impact business continuity. They also increase costs and constrain short- and long-term plans for growth.

Threats related to older PBX systems – and the ways IP communications can help resolve these threats include:

  • Frequent Outages and Business Disruptions: Where older PBX systems can crash and require manual  servicing, IP technology enables technicians to perform remote diagnostics and clear troubles, often remotely, without dispatching a technician. Remote service capabilities improve performance benchmarks.
  • Increasing Costs of Repair and Maintenance: Vendors and dealers typically increase prices for older   systems to motivate customers to move to current platforms. As a result, newer systems may be more cost-effective than keeping an existing system.
  • End of Manufacturer Sales and Support: Vendors phase out support for legacy systems over time. IP communication platforms are typically software-powered, which enables vendors to offer perpetual software assurance agreements.
  • Shrinking Manufacturer and Third-Party Supply of Spares: As systems require updating, companies may find it harder to locate hardware and ancillary components; circuit boards with compatible firmware release levels; system documentation; and skilled telecom technicians. Voicemail systems are especially vulnerable because backup electromechanical disk drives used for message storage are scarce.
  • Increased Likelihood of Shadow-IT: When employees can’t get the features or capabilities they require from IT, they obtain it themselves often with consumer apps. Although this may solve their problem, it often creates significant issues for the organization and IT itself in terms of protecting customer data, compliance, interoperability, scalability, import/export, and integration.
  •  Limited Capacity for Adding New Elements: When PBX systems need to grow, companies may struggle with the ability to add users and trunks, voicemail boxes, call center agents, etc. IP communication systems often can grow by buying more software licenses.
  • Dial Plan Limitations for New Regional and Global Locations: IP platforms from major providers generally conform to E.164, the ITU-T (International Telecommunications Union Telecommunication Standardization Sector) international public telecommunication numbering plan recommendation for the worldwide public switched telephone network (PSTN) and some other data networks.
  • Inability to virtualize communication platforms: By definition, a hardware PBX is not virtual. In contrast, IP communications’ compatibility with VMware and similar offers from other providers support highly resilient implementations using a centralized data center model.

10 Features to Consider 

  1. Call Forwarding: This is similar to call forwarding performed by a receptionist, although the process is completely automated. When a call is received at a designated number the system can be configured to automatically forward the call to other pre-set numbers, such as your cell or home phone if you happen to be working remotely or from home.
  2. Quality of Service (QoS) refers to the process of prioritizing certain VoIP features, such as call quality, to ensure uninterrupted service. You can program the QoS settings to defer to voice over other services such as email and video. QoS may also be improved by improving the internet connection. VoIP functions best on a fast, reliable Internet Service.
  3. Conference Bridge allows multiple callers to participate in a phone call by providing virtual conference room(s). Traditional 3-way calling limits the number of participants in a meeting. Conference bridges may be equipped to handle a larger group, and eliminate the need to dial through a central operator to access the call.
  4. Call Logging is an important phone system feature that can have a huge impact on your organization’s efficiency and your employee’s individual productivity. Call logging can produce statistical data which can be used for management and analysis purposes to set objectives and drive revenue. Statistics obtained can also be used to reduce the cost of calls. Businesses can ascertain when their calls are being made, which regions of the country are being contacted and how long the calls generally last.
  5.  Automated Attendant informs callers of how long they can expect to wait until their call is answered as well as ensuring customers can reach the correct department by making menu choices with their telephone keypad. This is a vital aspect of customer service today as customers become more impatient over the phone and any unexpected delay could lead to disinterest and ultimately breakdown of relationship.
  6. Call Recording is often used for training purposes and can have a huge impact on the quality of customer service and overall communication standards throughout an organization.
  7. Music on Hold can make the hold time more bearable for the caller and can also be a marketing tool by interspersing music with announcements about products and services.
  8. Call Restrictions allow telephone system administrators to bar certain numbers so they cannot be  dialed from within the network. This can also be set to stop users from dialing certain groups of numbers such as overseas numbers.
  9. Unified Communications (UC) integrates multiple communication channels into one centralized access point. A Unified Communications service allows users to communicate through their preferred channel such as IM. Whether you’re a small or large business, it’s quite common for employees to be dispersed across many locations. Unified Communications ensures that everyone can reach each other in real time, whether they’re traveling or working from a remote location. This often results in increased productivity. Also, UC users can be accessed on mobile devices, so they can work from any location.
  10. Contact Center: In today’s business environment, organizations must take advantage of the latest communication technologies to streamline their processes, enhance staff productivity and improve customer service. Contact Center software helps accomplish these goals by handling high call volume with a minimum number of resources. Combining this with UC enables users to login as an agent and view real-time queue statistics plus monitor Contact Center status of other agents. When call volumes are high, they can easily and quickly login to handle calls that are waiting in queue which results in improved customer satisfaction.

Interested in more information? Call now: 1-800-898-3336 or email sales@nutecelectrotel.com to arrange a complimentary needs analysis.

Business Technology Solutions Custom Designed for Your Business and Your Budget

Source credit to Dave Michels, TalkingPointz

Who would have predicted the telephone’s evolution to the role it has in our lives today? A lot has happened since 1876 when Alexander Graham Bell was awarded the first U.S. patent for the invention of the telephone. The telephone also has its roots in the telegraph, with popular inventor Samuel F. B. Morse, along with by many other contributors to the evolutionary process.

Some telephones in the early 1900’s resembled wall-mounted oak furniture. They were equipped with batteries to support voice transmission and a crank to operate a magneto and generate ringing.

Initially there were no telephone exchanges. However, Western Union applied the principle of telegraph exchanges to its telephones in New York City and San Francisco. Fast forward to the present with the proliferation of telephone exchanges around the world accompanied by private branch exchanges (PBXs) in businesses everywhere. These have evolved to include analog, digital and VoIP technologies.

Take a step back to 1983 when Motorola Introduced the DyanaTAC cellular phone. We have witnessed cell phones evolve immensely since then. Today’s smart phones are a prime example as they keep being re-invented. Now you can not only have a conversation, you can email, text, take a picture, play a video, browse the internet or run one of the thousands of applications. Those of you with children will know how hard it is to put parental restrictions on anything electronic. Smart phones even enable you to track your child with a GPS locator, lock out questionable website addresses, and more.

A more recent development allows your smart phone to be an extension connected to your office PBX. A prime example is NEC’s Multiline Client (MLC) Mobile. This provides anywhere, anytime access by moving NEC’s desktop telephone functionality, including unified communications, onto a user’s Android™ or Apple® mobile device. It allows call response to be immediate, regardless of the user’s location. Emulating the intuitive interface of an NEC 32-button self-labeling phone display, MLC Mobile solves the business challenge of customers and colleagues being able to reach your mobile workforce. It gives your mobile workforce the visual displays and features needed to perform their job intelligently, while remaining connected. Following is a view of this app on a smart phone:
Users are able to transfer their NEC desktop telephone to their personal handheld Android or Apple device, while maintaining their call connection. Calls are initiated or can continue via Wi-Fi or LTE connection.

You may ask, “what’s next?” Who knows? You may not have to wait long for an answer!

Need a modern business telephone system without a major upfront investment, but not ready for the cloud?

The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE offers a complete, out-of-the-box, on-premises business telephone solution. The packages include all the phones, hardware, and SIP Trunks needed – providing a cost-effective alternative to cloud-based solutions.

With a reputation for reliability and security, the SV9100 BLUE by NEC is ideal for the small or medium-sized business in need of technologies like Unified Messaging, Voicemail and the latest Mobility features without the requirement of a large upfront investment.

On-Premises or Cloud?

Businesses today are often faced with the difficult decision of choosing between a cloud-based communications solution or an on-premises solution. It’s a difficult choice for many small businesses since both delivery methods have their unique advantages. The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE offers a combination of the strengths of both models.

A History of Dependability

The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE evolved from NEC’s award winning premise-based UNIVERGE SV9100 solution. This is a complete, field-proven business telephone solution supporting applications including mobility clients, unified messaging and much more.

Minimal Investment Required

Instead of a requiring a capital investment, the SV9100 BLUE includes all the hardware and SIP Trunk services in the low monthly payment. This operating expense (OPEX) funding plan allows more flexibility, a value for any business. NEC Today recently posted an article on getting the best value in a communications solution, even on a tight budget.

A Predictable Expense

A key advantage of the UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE solution is the cost. No purchase or expensive lease payments are required. The SV9100 BLUE is strictly deployed under an operating expense model, without the need of a large upfront investment. Pay only for the capacity you need with a single monthly bill for hardware and phone services.

Shifting your communications to an operating expense plan means fewer surprises. Nobody likes surprise charges when you least expect them, especially on equipment installations, maintenance and upgrades. An OPEX model makes it easier to forecast your budget compared to a capital expenditure (CAPEX) model.

Unified Communications Features

The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE is a robust, on-premises UC business phone solution from NEC, a trusted leader in communications technology, with all the latest features your business needs.

Simple, Reliable, Secure

The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE is delivered as an on-premises phone solution offering unsurpassed NEC reliability and security. Your business phone system becomes an easy install, predictable monthly expense, eliminating the need for a large upfront investment. Pay only for the capacity you need with a single monthly bill.

The UNIVERGE SV9100 BLUE is a cost effective phone solution to meet your business communications requirements. The subscription base platform includes everything you need to get started.

More information