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A quick guide to choosing the best VoIP service in West Sacramento
If you’re not yet on VoIP, you’re probably eager to make the switch to enjoy the cost savings and advanced functionality. There are two key parts to making a successful transition to a VoIP service. The first is to make sure that your IT infrastructure can cope with the extra load (or that you’ve organized a robust VoIP hosting service). The second is to make sure that you’re working with a high-quality VoIP service partner. With that in mind, here’s a quick guide to choosing the best VoIP service in West Sacramento.
Make sure you understand your own capabilities
VoIP offers all kinds of functionality, but only if your network can support it. This means that you have to think about the practicalities of ensuring network capacity before you can start thinking about implementing advanced and/or bandwidth-draining features. The good news is that it’s usually fairly straightforward to implement a like-for-like replacement of your existing telephone system and enjoy the significant cost-savings which are the main attraction of VoIP for most companies.
Look at what you get from your current provider(s)
This is probably less relevant to the business world than to the consumer one, but it’s still worth checking. Your landline phone provider may provide additional services such as cell phones, internet, and/or TV. This is less likely for cell phone providers, but still worth checking. You need to decide whether or not these additional services are of any real value to you and if so to ensure that alternative arrangements are made for when you switch to VoIP.
Examine your current, historic and projected usage
The previous step was checking what you had. This step is about deciding what you actually need now and going forward into the future. Your current and historic usage should give you some guidance about existing patterns of behavior. You then need to think about anything which could change this and what it could mean for your plans. It’s advisable to do this for all phones (i.e. landline and cell) and also any fax machines you have so that you make the most of any opportunities for savings.
For completeness, VoIP is very flexible and hence scalable so VoIP service vendors tend to be more able and willing to accommodate changes. The real question is whether or not you can support the necessary bandwidth requirements. Thinking about your future needs (and wants) allows you to think about what this will mean for your network infrastructure and by extension your budget.
Think about your requirements for softphones/VoIP handsets (or both)
This is connected to the idea of thinking about your usage but is effectively a different angle on it. Softphones are basically apps which run on regular computers or mobile devices. They can be a great option if you’re short on space, but they only work effectively if the underlying hardware is up to the task. In particular, you need to be able to see the softphone plus any additional apps you need to use with it. This means users need screens of a decent size.
VoIP handsets may seem like taking a step backward since you’re basically swapping out a regular phone for something which looks like a regular phone and takes up as much space as a regular phone, but they can be worth the investment. They look and feel familiar, which can ease adoption, and work without needing other devices to be powered on.
If you opt for softphones, then it’s very much recommended to trial a vendor’s offering before committing to them, especially if you want to install it on mobile devices. If you opt for VoIP handsets then you need to decide whether you are happy to purchase them yourself or whether you’d like to get them as part of a contract with a VoIP service vendor.
Create a shortlist of vendors who demonstrate suitable standards
It’s recommended to check three key points before you start looking at pricing plans and ad hoc charges. Firstly, you need proof that a vendor can support high calling quality. Secondly, you need proof that a vendor can support all relevant security and compliance requirements. Your vendor should be prepared to commit to these standards as part of their contract. Remember, however, that contracts only have value if you can enforce them in the real world. This is a strong argument in favor of sticking with local vendors.
Thirdly, a vendor should demonstrate a good attitude to customer service and support, especially to companies of a similar size. Enterprise-focused VoIP service vendors are not likely to be the best choice for most SMBs.
If you’d like to speak to one of the best VoIP service partners in West Sacramento, please click here now to contact Salient IT.