1 UNS White Paper - What is hosted voice? Learn more about how a Business hosted voice solution could benefit you Hosted Telephony is one of the most powerful ways to make your business more agile and save you money. VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, is an established technology that allows telephony services to be delivered over the Internet rather than traditional telephone lines. When you make a VoIP call, your speech is condensed into packets of sound, sent over a broadband connection and restored at the far end. This means that the quality of a VoIP call depends on; How good your broadband connection is How good your telephony equipment is at condensing and restoring speech How good your telephony provider is at managing your connections and equipment Why Hosted Business Voice? There are two classes of services, namely business and consumer. A Business service delivers better quality, is more resilient and offers more features than a consumer service. This is very important because the quality of calls can range from outstanding to inaudible. There are three important reasons why you should consider using Business grade solutions; Hosted solutions costs less than traditional business telephony services Business VoIP has more and better features than traditional business telephony services Business VoIP works anywhere, including on your mobile telephone, nationally and internationally Quite simply, Business VoIP delivers a better telephony solution at a lower cost.
2 Why choose hosted voice? How do you make the right choice between a hosted VoIP service and an on-premise solution? If you already have Private Branch Exchange (PBX) system, it seems logical to simply upgrade your existing equipment to an IP PBX telephony solution. However logical this step may seem, it may not be the best decision for you and your business. How do you decide between a hosted VoIP service and an on-premise IP PBX? Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) A hosted service is often a lower cost solution than an on-premise IP PBX. In general terms, hosted services deliver a better TCO for a business with Geographically dispersed offices and customer locations A growing need to support mobile and remote end-users A desire to exploit some of the advanced features offered by hosted Voice If you would like to understand whether a hosted VoIP service is a lower cost solution for you, please call us and we will help you with no obligation for you to buy. Before you call, please make sure that you have the following information The time period you wish to consider for the cost ownership analysis The number of office or shop locations The number of employees and telephones you require, including your anticipated growth over the time period Your monthly telecom expenses Business performance improvement Hosted services offer a number of significant advantages that are not rooted simply in cost. The most important benefits to consider are; Improved service performance for your employees. Hosted service providers invest heavily in network connectivity, ensuring that all of your offices or shops benefit from robust and well managed connections. VoIP is not a simple service to implement and manage. If call quality and high levels of service availability are important to your business, then a hosted service is more likely to meet your needs, Increased productivity. Hosted services are generally easier for your employees to use, offer more features and management report facilities than on-premise systems, Increased agility. Hosted VoIP services are simpler to move, change and scale up or down.
3 Other important factors to consider A PBX requires a dedicated, configured and properly managed environment. PBX software needs regular support and maintenance that extends to the desktop and telephony devices. Most IP PBX vendors release new software upgrades every six months and managing this could place an unwanted burden on your business. A PBX will require you to purchase and maintain call logging equipment for you to be able to monitor your costs and performance. A PBX will require you to buy and maintain call recording equipment. A single PBX gives you no resilience. Many PBX s are proprietary which means that they only function with telephone handsets, headsets or soft clients from the same manufacturer. Moves, Adds and Changes are faster, simpler and lower cost with a hosted service. An on-premise solution will mean that you must have an appropriately qualified system administrator. With a hosted service, employees can manage their own telephony needs through an intuitive on-line portal. If your business is geographically dispersed, an on-premise solution will require you to implement dialling plans, inter-site trunking, call distribution for inbound calls etc. Hosted services are simpler to implement and require little or no management from you. Hosted services scale by the telephone line from single line additions upwards. IP PBX systems require an initial investment to support a block of telephone lines and upgrades are also only available in blocks. Scaling an IP PBX up or down will make "lumpy" changes to your capacity. Many PBXs do not fully support click-to-dial from outlook. This can be a particularly issue because some PBX s partially integrate with outlook. You need to understand how you want outlook to function in your new IP environment to be able to make an informed decision. Hosted service providers tend to have better outlook integration. Hosted services are delivered using world-class equipment on secure networks with built in resilience and business continuity. Replicating an IP PBX environment of a similar integrity will be costly and highly complex. How has cloud changed business telephony? Until relatively recently, all telephony was delivered using Public Switched Telephone Networks (PSTN). VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, transmits voice over a data network. When you make a VoIP call, your speech is condensed into packets of sound, sent over a dedicated connection and restored at the far end. In other words, telephony has moved from circuit switched to packet switched. This simple innovation lies at the heart of VoIP s power.
4 What benefits are available? VoIP offers businesses a compelling combination of streamlined telecommunications and lower cost of ownership. In practice, this means increased productivity and lower telephone bills. Hosting can reduce your call costs significantly The actual savings you achieve will depend on how you use your telephones. Some businesses have enjoyed savings of 70% to 80% when they have moved to a hosted provider. Any call made between customers on the same system is free. If all of your fixed business lines are delivered by the same service provider then you will eliminate internal call costs. If your customers and suppliers use the same provider then calls to them are free too. In addition to these savings, conference calls are much lower cost than their PSTN equivalent. Hosted Telephony can lower your capital costs Business grade hosted voice does not require capital investment in a PBX and its associated network equipment. Hosted service providers offer the lowest cost of entry. If you choose a hosted service, the only hardware you will need is a set of IP telephones and a voice gateway connected to a router. Hosting can lower your maintenance costs A hosted solution streamlines your business telephony, dramatically reducing maintenance costs because a packet switched service can be managed more efficiently than traditional telephone lines. Hosted Telephony can improve your business performance Hosted voice offers powerful features that improve productivity and support mobile working. Business users can access their telephony over any Internet connection wherever they are located. Integration with applications like Microsoft Outlook and Customer Relationship Management systems deliver significant productivity benefits like click to dial. In practice, businesses have enjoyed productivity benefits ranging from 8% to over 35% on moving to a hosted solution. Follow up To take advantage of our no obligation discussion to find out how hosted solutions can benefit your business or arrange a demo simply call us on or
5 About Unique Telecoms play a vital part of your IT systems. Mobile, 3G, Lease lines, ADSL and now our Hosted Phone Systems. All of these from vital parts of the overall system, and UNS have teamed up with leading brands to provide our clients throughout Essex, London and the South East with end to end solutions for voice and data links. Hosted voice solutions now allow our customers to reduce overall cost be eliminating expensive monthly line rentals, system maintenance and charges for adds, moves and changes by using existing broadband to deliver their calls, reliably, with great quality and from anywhere at any time, providing great business continuity. So whether it s getting the cost savings that Voice over IP can offer, looking at a new phone system, understanding how Skype can help you, or making sure you have the most competitive overall voice and data packages, UNS can help. Many of our clients have made significant savings, some up to 40%, by having our specialists take care of their voice and data. Most of all you ll have one dedicated contact for all your voice and data needs.
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