The Importance of Your Office Phone and Telecommunication System
Whilst many companies make and receive significantly fewer phone calls than in times gone by, largely due to the vast array of other options available, such as email, social media, and text messaging, an office phone still plays an important role. A phone call is a lot more personal than digital means of communication, and it is one of easiest and quickest ways, apart from face-to-face meetings, to form a connection with someone in the course of your business dealing. Never underestimate the power of the human voice!
There are several aspects to consider when setting up your office telephone system:
Type of System
In a small office space for rent, for example, there may only be one office phone. This may be answered by any member of a small team, or there may be a designated person to answer the phone and deal with enquires. Larger offices generally have several office telephone lines, with at least one for each team if not every member of staff.
Whereas a lot of businesses have landlines with actual telephones, and probably a fax number too, some companies find that they can function well using just mobile phones. This not only saves on line rental costs but also means that the company does not have to buy telephonic equipment. When office sharing or hot desking is the norm, this has the added advantage that your members of staff can always have their office phone with them; they are not tied to a particular desk or even a set location. People can work from the office or work remotely and still be completely connected with their business phone.
Type of Service
There are many packages to choose from with both landline providers and mobile phone companies. Cost is often a huge factor, as is usage allowance with cell phones. Compare several before signing up for a service.
Where a fixed office telephone line is desired, a VoIP system can prevent the need of having a landline installed. Calls can be made and received using the internet rather than the more traditional method. VoIP office phone systems may be self-hosted or via a cloud service.
Some businesses manage to operate with just a voicemail service in place to answer calls, with members of staff listening back to messages and dealing with messages, sometimes with call-backs, sometimes with emails. Most people dislike talking to a machine, however, and, unless you receive very few business-connected calls, a voicemail-only office phone is not the ideal. Having a voicemail service in place for outside of core business hours is, though, highly recommended.
A business may rely on many virtual office services, including the answering of office phones. This is generally the case with receptionists who field calls for several companies, answering as though they work for the various companies. It will probably be necessary to provide at least a basic level of training and vital company information to the person or people who will be taking your business calls in this manner.
There are times when a business phone call is more secure and confidential than electronic means of communication. Conference calls can bring people together without people needing to leave their own offices or office space.