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Getting the Right PBX Service for Your Business

By James Allen Subscribe to RSS | April 10th 2012 | Views:

Before deciding which PBX will be right for your business, you must make an in-depth study of what are your exact communication needs. How many of your employees will be in need of individual extensions with voicemail? Will you want some kind of mobile solution - such a cell phone, a BlackBerry or other smartphone for certain select employees?

How many employees you expect to have in the next three years? Will you want calls routed to employees in remote locations? Decide on all these and all similarly important factors before you make up your mind on the choice of PBX. Apart from the standard features, you should consider the following extremely useful optional features while deciding on the right PBX for your business needs:

Auto-attendant: This is a great feature as it will free your employees from picking up the phone every time it rings. Besides, when customers hear a computerized system with options, it can make them believe they are dealing with a large corporation.

Conferencing: You will find teleconferencing facility cost-effective, help you arrive at business decisions faster and also contribute to overall employee productivity.

Call hunt: This is yet another valuable feature. If one employee doesn't answer the phone, the call will automatically forward to another person instead of going directly to voicemail.

Expandability: Whichever PBX you opt for, make sure there is adequate expandability provision. Your business will be growing and you will be recruiting more and more employees and you can ill-afford to keep discarding systems.

PBX systems comprise of onsite switching equipment to route calls between employees and outside lines. Standard PBX systems are usually the right choice for medium and large businesses. But there are also PBX vendors who, provide services suitable for the small-businesses using VoIP technology. These kinds of systems are a good choice if you need sophisticated features including auto-attendant.

Virtual PBX services can be the right solution if you want to test the waters before committing to a larger system, because it lets you take advantage of all the lines you currently have. There are service providers who give you a toll-free number, call forwarding, voicemail, and a basic auto-attendant system with hold-on music. The cost of Virtual PBX (or hosted PBX) systems depends on features and the number of lines, and can save you tons of money. Opt for Virtual PBX if you want to use the equipment you already have and do not want or need a permanent office installation. An inexpensive system like this could give you all the communication you need.

In today's computer age, more and more business houses appreciate the merits of voice-related services over the Internet, The three available options for VoIP PBX options are:

1. Standalone IP PBX - This entails buying all the equipment and software and managing the system on your own without external support.

2. Managed IP PBX - The business acquires the equipment but hires an outside service provider to operate the system for them.

3. Hosted IP PBX - The business hires a service provider to host and manage the system

With standalone and managed IP PBX systems, if a line goes off, employees can not make calls or even get voice mail. However, with hosted IP telephony, they can. This is one among the many reasons why businesses favor hosted PBX.

James Allen - About Author:
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