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Moving Considerations: Replacing Your Business Phone System | It’s Your Move | Part 1

by Kevin Gillingham | Sep 21, 2012

Last month, we introduced the topic of technology considerations when moving or expanding your business.  Today, we kick off a six-part blog series for Deciders on the different areas of technology that need consideration.

Assume you’re changing office locations, which means you’ll likely use this as an opportunity to reassess your existing phone system.  What do you need to think about first?

The initial thinking process is not about the heavy technical stuff.  Technical, customized considerations come later.  Need video-collaboration calling?  Unified messaging?  Remote worker support?  Call-centre capabilities? Expandability?  Sure, no problem.

But let’s consider the broader choices first.

If you have an outdated phone system, chances are you’ve heard of Voice Over IP (VoIP) technology and its potential to save you money and add functionality.  What you may not be aware of is that you have choices on how to purchase and manage your phone system.

Managing Your Choices

Managing your choices means deciding how much control of your phone system you need.  Consider the scale and nature of your business.  How often do you have staff changes?  How critical is up-time to your business?  Does call volume fluctuate seasonally?  Do you have the appropriate IT people to manage your own system?  Do you want to purchase it up front?  Do you eat the red ones last?  You get the idea; you’re a Decider.

To Host or Not to Host?

Everything begins with a nuanced selection.  The options differ slightly, but the difference for your business could be significant.  Let’s look at three choices:

(1) On Site All the Time: This means that the IP PBX system—or, the box, the unit that combines networking and telephony—is installed on-premise by Activo.  You have it managed by your capable IT team.  You’ll take charge of everything, thanks very much.

(2) Remotely Yours: Your business doesn’t have the scale necessary to support an IT team.  You don’t care to host the system for whatever reason anyway.  You have Activo remotely host your system in a secure location and manage it for you.  (You’ve got better things to worry about).

(3) The Compromise: You like to have your stuff in your place, but you either don’t want the hassle of managing it or simply can’t. You pay a management fee that helps you breathe easier. But it’s still your gear—in your house.

(4) The Backup: You want backups for everything.  Your phones are too critical to your business.  You keep the box on site, but you also have a backup off-site hosted by Activo in a secure location.  If your on-site system ever goes down, it immediately fails-over to the off-site backup.  Resilient peace of mind.

Your decision just got a lot easier.

Have an Activo professional collaborate with you today to determine what’s best for you – and we can certainly talk about all the heavy technical stuff, too.

Next blog, Part Two: Moving Considerations: The Bandwidth Bandwagon