by Matt Peterson Friday, September 21st, 2012.
Today’s telephone industry vastly varies from yesteryear. With advanced telephony technology overtaking the market, there are a number of small business phone systems that help to increase productivity and decrease telecommunication expenses.
Even though email, text messaging and instant messaging have overtaken the telecommunications market, nothing will replace the personal feel of hearing a voice at the other end of the line. Often times, miscommunication can be traced back to emails feeling impersonal, leaving room for confusion.
There are four main types of business phone systems, which include:
- Key Systems – Otherwise known as a Key System Unit (KSU), these business phone systems are best for companies with 10 to 40 employees. They look and feel like a traditional telephone, but allow companies to upgrade and expand their phone systems as their needs grow.
- Keyless Systems – These systems are extremely inexpensive and ideal for businesses with 10 or fewer employees. The downside of Keyless Systems is that they cannot grow with a business and are not scalable. These small business phone systems allow an employee to pick up a line while another employee is on a telephone call. All technology is built into the phones, making them extremely easy for transport, should a company relocate.
- Private Branch eXchange Systems – Known as hosted PBX, these systems are perfect for businesses with 50 or more employees. This is one of the most common business telephone systems on the market, and can also be one of the most expensive. It has extremely advanced features, making it exceptional for larger businesses or businesses that have rapid growth models. These types of systems are designed to work with other telecommunication tools already in place in many large companies, making it flexible and easy to incorporate.
- Voice over Internet Protocol Systems – This modern form of telecommunications utilizes the Internet to further advance business communications. VoIP systems are extremely affordable, work exceptionally well for any size business and are easily scalable. Since the Internet is portable, this type of telephone system is also portable, making it easy for traveling employees or those that work from home to maintain high productivity levels. These types of systems are inexpensive, and most carriers, offer fixed monthly fees per user. These types of systems do not charge exorbitant fees for long distance, making it easy for companies to budget set fees into their annual telecommunication expenses.
It is important for companies to consider their future growth model and production projections when selecting a telephone system. Instead of only looking at the present, it is important for them to look towards the future. Is scalability a must with industry growth? Does the company plan on relocating in the future? Are budgeting precise expenses vital for investors? These questions can help a company determine which telecommunications route best meets their present and future needs.