The importance of communication in the business world cannot be stressed enough. Doing it RIGHT can be the difference between landing or losing a customer. And a very important medium that facilitates seamless communication between employees and customers is a business phone system.
A business phone system might look like your regular phone system at first glance, but it is much more than that. It comes with so many advanced features that are not found even in modern home phones.
But what exactly is a business phone system, and why does an organization need it in the first place? Let’s find out in this post.
What is a Business Phone System?
A business phone system is a multi-line phone system that is predominantly used in a business ecosystem where the call volume is usually huge. They constitute a wide range of technologies, ranging from the basic key telephone system to the more contemporary cloud phone system These office phone systems also come with an array of next-gen features such as call transfer, conference call, call metering, etc., that improve your employees’ lives.
A business phone service is usually adopted in enterprises to improve the overall productivity of the employees and enhance customer satisfaction. It helps build a professional image for the organization and creates channels for seamless communication.
Why do you Need a Business Phone System?
Here are the top reasons why you need a business phone system in your organization –
1. Ease of use
A business phone system simplifies your business communication to a great extent. You no longer have to use several tools to record, forward, or organize calls. Instead, you can use just a single tool for the same. Cloud telephony systems shift your regular business phone system to the cloud making your lives even simpler. They can be integrated with tools like CRMs and ATSs to ensure that all your data remains in the same place.
The phones used in offices historically have always been expensive and bulky. The worst part was wiring them into the building. The more the number of employees in the building, the more complex it became. On top of it, maintaining these phone systems was a cumbersome task. You needed an expert 24/7 to handle outages and downtimes. All these shot up the price of setting up and managing business phone systems.
Modern business phone systems, particularly those working via VoIP or cloud, are highly cost-effective and cheaper to set up and run. For starters, they do not need any hardware or software to operate. Secondly, maintenance is completely handled by the vendor.
3. Helps project a professional image
This point is particularly applicable if you are running a small business or a startup. As a business owner, you might be handling most of the tasks yourself. But this is also the time when your business needs to exude a professional image to the outside world. This is easily achievable through a business phone system. Thanks to features like call redirecting, IVR, call scheduling, etc., your business will look and act like it’s a large and professionally-run organization.
4. Improved customer experience
Earlier business phone systems had one major flaw – you had to be at the office to attend to any incoming calls. This greatly increased the number of missed calls, which, in turn, led to customer dissatisfaction. Modern-day business phone systems are fueled by VoIP and cloud technology, making the business phone system totally device agnostic. This means you or your employees can answer customer calls anytime, anywhere. No more dropped calls, leading to improved customer experience.
5. Helps in making data-driven decisions
Present-day business phone systems come with a powerful analytics engine that generates valuable insights to better understand your company’s collaboration process. Based on this data, you can tailor the call flow. This data is also used for understanding the performance of your teams and helping the low-performing employees to communicate better. But the most important benefit is it allows you to track and analyze your customer’s behavior, which helps in crafting the perfect experience for them.
Different Types of Business Phone Systems
Here are the different types of business phone systems that you can install in your office –
1. Key system units
This is probably the most basic business phone system out there. KSUs are ideal phone systems for small business as it has a limitation when it comes to the number of phone lines that can be installed. This business phone system is also not portable; your employees need to be present at the office to make or receive calls.
These systems use a central switching device called KSU (hence the name!). A KSU is used to determine the phone-line selection manually. There is also the KSU-less system that’s portable without compromising on the features of the original KSU system.
The only catch is this system allows a very limited number of users and is usually not sold commercially. But both KSU and KSU-less phone systems are extremely easy to use (as simple as home telephones), making the learning curve quite flat.
PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange. It is a more complex and advanced business phone system when compared with KSU or KSU-less systems. One good thing about this phone system is that a company of any size can use it as most of the calling operations are automated. This is possible thanks to programmable switching devices which are installed on-premises. The best part about the PBX phone system is that it works with an uninterrupted power supply. In other words, there is no downtime or outages.
You also have the hosted PBX systems where the switching device is not installed on-premises. It’s hosted by the provider instead. This means you can save on some installation and maintenance costs.
VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol is a much more advanced business phone system that uses the internet to connect two callers. The best part about this virtual phone system is its scalability. Since it doesn’t require any major hardware or software to operate, you can add as many users as you want to this system.
Unlike the other two business phone systems, VoIP comes with a myriad of unique features such as conditional call routing, auto-dialer, plug-n-play integration, etc., all of which boost the overall productivity of your employees.
Features of Business Phone System
Let’s now look at the key features available in most modern business phone systems –
1. Unified Messaging
This is a must-have feature in any business phone system of today. In this, your employee can send or receive a variety of messaging such as voice, video, email, or even fax from a single account. In other words, your employees can effortlessly communicate with others in any channel they want without the need to switch platforms or devices. It’s a perfect feature for those working from home or those who are always on the road (like a salesperson).
2. Call Forwarding
If you are a fairly large organization with multiple people capable of attending calls, then this feature is very important. At the tap of a button, your employee must be able to instantly transfer the call to another person within the network of the business phone system. This is particularly helpful if a caller calls the wrong department in the organization and your employee guides them to the right team without them having to cut the call.
3. Call Recording
This is another critical feature for organizations of all sizes that helps in a variety of situations. For starters, recorded calls offer a wealth of information to the organization. You can identify problem areas in your communication process and resolve them before it impacts your business in a big way. Similarly, it helps in training new employees and capturing general customer satisfaction in calls.
If you are an organization using a variety of workflow tools like CRMs and ATSs, this is a great feature to have. Many contemporary business phone systems offer plug-n-play integrations with various productivity tools. Together they become one source of truth for all information you need about the calls and callers. You do not have to visit multiple platforms or tools to collect and use the information.
How to Choose the Best Business Phone Systems?
Here are the different factors you must consider while selecting a business phone system for your business –
- Feature-rich: Make sure that the business phone system you choose has all the must-have features like call recording, call forwardings, plug-n-play integrations, etc.
- Customized: The phone system must be tailored to your industry and all your necessary use cases. Never waste too much time customizing a platform after subscribing to it.
- Pricing: Ensure that the cost of the phone system fits your budget. If not, your ROI will be negatively impacted. Bonus if you could find a platform offering a free trial. It will help you test the platform without committing to it.
- Learning curve: The phone system must be easy to use, even for someone who has just joined your organization. This way, you can save on unwanted training and workshops.
- Scalability: No organization will remain the same forever; the number of employees will constantly grow. This means your phone system must be able to accommodate any number of employees without the need to break the bank.
Top 5 Business Phone Systems in 2022
Here are the top 5 business telephone systems that you can currently adopt in your organization –
FreJun is the best business phone service in India. It comes with a host of features such as call scheduling, autodialer, call recording, Chrome extension, click-to-call, etc. FreJun can be integrated with popular CRMs like HubSpot and PipeDrive, ATSs like CEIPAL, X0PA, and workflow tools like Google Calendar and Outlook Calendar. This is a must-have tool if you are looking to improve call pickup rates and increase team productivity. FreJun comes with a free 7-day trial.
The next phone system on our list is Nextiva, which is a popular name in the business phone industry. The tool is particularly known for its user-friendly admin panel, which ensures that the learning curve is flat. Some of the noteworthy features in this phone system include caller ID, call forwarding, routing, custom greetings, and advanced IVR, to name a few. This is also one of the few business phone systems that have a powerful analytics engine throwing valuable insights in real-time.
RingCentral is a cloud based phone phone system that lets you make calls, conduct audio conferences, and send online fax and SMS, all from the same platform. The best part about this phone system is that your employees can use any mobile device to make or receive calls. The tool also comes with a bunch of nice-to-have features such as call logging, call monitoring, call recording, etc.
Dialpad is an ideal choice if you are a small business or a startup. It comes with some basic features like voice and video calling, team chat, virtual faxing, and SMS texting. Apart from this, there are some advanced features like automatic spam detection, visual voicemail, click-to-call, multi-level auto attendant, call routing, etc. Dialpad comes with a free 14-day free trial for users to try out the tool.
The last name on our list is Ooma which is a VoIP business phone system that provides business phone numbers and toll-free phone numbers for all its customers. Some of the important features that come with this phone system include a virtual receptionist, music-on-hold, smart mobile phone apps, and call logs, to name a few. Ooma also comes with a customized dashboard that lets you manage calls, add members, and more.
Now that you know everything about business phone systems, the only thing left to do is pick a business phone system for your organization. FreJun is the default choice for most organizations today, thanks to its powerful calling features. The best part about FreJun is that it comes with a free 14-day trial that lets you explore the tool to your heart’s content.
Ready to try FreJun? Sign up for a free trial now.
A business analyst turned writer who loves to paint away his free time. A staunch follower of the 'Workcation' concept, he loves to combine the art of writing with the enigma of traveling.