The single most important consideration when establishing your business technology priorities is the impact on your business mission.
As a business owner, you’ll only want to acquire technology solutions that help you:
- Inspire your customers and enhance customer service,
- Manage your costs and improve productivity, and
- Align with your longer-term business objectives.
Often the telephone system is a major component of today’s business technology investment. And, with the proliferation of options in the marketplace, it is easy to be confused. You may have heard of business phone systems referred to as “hosted”, “virtual”, “VoIP”, “cloud”, premise, or hybrid. But how should you make sense of these? Whatever the status of your business may be, it’s important to consider these factors:
- 1. What do you need from your phone system to support your primary business objectives?
- 2. What, if any, new developments and features will positively impact your company’s customer service and productivity goals.
- 3. Which business phone system features will enhance your business success? These may included benefits derived from voicemail, auto attendant, unified communications, contact center, or call recording.
- 4. Do you need multiple lines, digital lines, or full IP service? Will toll-free numbers, virtual in-bound numbers and/or non-geographical numbers assist in attracting callers?
- 5. Will an OpEx or CapEx funding structure best meet your accounting requirements?
However simple or complex your needs may be, reliability of your service is key. Frequent system outages may cause your customers and prospects to be unable to reach you. As result, you and your team may find yourselves disconnected from critical vendors, partners, or customers.
Your ability to meet and exceed customer expectations requires that you provide tools that keep your employees happy, productive, and confident in their ability to help your customers. This means minimizing the hassles and organizational stress associated with technology upgrades, so your front-line staff isn’t struggling with the phone system when they should be focused on solving a customer problem.
Keeping your focus on customer service and the bottom line also means that maintenance or software upgrades should not affect your business operations. This is where a well-designed managed communications plan provides the peace of mind with comprehensive provisions to maintain all the facets of the business telephone system’s reliability. It will also ensure that your staff is kept up to date with training and that your service costs are properly controlled.
In summary, as part of your business technology priorities, you need a business phone system pricing structure that works with you. It should also provide options to add features as your needs change. This is another useful way to prevent being left behind and saves your business from having to make a large capital outlay for technology that you don’t need or can’t expand.