You hear about it all the time. You think you know what it is. You may even think you’re using it. It’s the Cloud. And yes, it probably does need to be capitalized.
You could call it the Internet to make it simple, or you could Google it to make it complex. The point is, most of the developed world is on the Cloud and your phone system should be too.
Here are 3 simple reasons your business should be using cloud-based communications:
The entire system, with the exception of the actual physical phones, is stored in secure, climate-controlled, redundant power facility data centers (versus the ominous data closet).
This means your entire control center and communications configuration doesn’t depend on premise-based functionality or operations (or disasters like major storms or floods). Their are even multiple locations in separate parts of the country that make up the cloud infrastructure, offering “geo-redundancy.”
Call routing, call forwarding, call reporting, and much more can be easily customized and managed by simply logging into your voice portal and customizing your configuration.
For example, let’s say you were expecting to close your business for a day because the building was being rewired and the power was going to be down. Unless you really needed a day off, you could simply update your phone system to automatically route to home or mobile phones for the day and keep your business open. In other words, cloud-based communications mean you are no longer limited by being tied to a physical system.
Not long ago, premise-based phone systems had “cabinets” with cards for lines and extensions. When the cards filled up, there would be relatively large expenses associated with adding cards whenever a business needed additional phones, lines, and extensions.
With cloud communications, you can add as many phones and call paths as your broadband bandwidth will allow without adding significant expenses. Cloud-based phone systems are able to quickly and easily increase and decrease according to your company’s needs.
Let’s say you sign on 20 phones but realize that 5 people are in the field most of the time and you decide to cut back 5. You can quickly do so and shave back expenses. Once a cloud-based plan is initially provisioned, it’s quick and easy to add (or remove) phones.
You can even add call paths on the fly. If you have 6 lines and you need 8 or 10, that can be increased the same day. And if you’re exceptionally busy during a certain time of year, you can utilize “Burstable Call Paths” (BCP) to make sure callers are never getting a busy signal or voicemail during business hours. If you’re swamped during the holidays, for example, you can program a BCP so that if you have 5 lines and a 6th call comes in, you’ll automatically expand to a 6th call path while you need it, and unless you decide to keep it, it will fall off your bill for the next billing cycle.
If you’re still on the fence (or the premises) with your communications system, you should definitely reconsider. Bring your business up to the Cloud.