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VoIP 101: What is It and Why Does Your Business Need It?
by 8x8
June 13, 2024
Business woman using laptop and talking on phone

In what now is a tech-savvy business world, communication happens more frequently and on more diverse tools than ever before.

From chat platforms to video conferencing, modern communication tools such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) allow colleagues to conduct business from anywhere in the world.

You might be asking yourself, “What exactly is VoIP”?

To put it simply, Voice over IP is an alternate communications service that allows businesses to make calls over the internet, rather than through traditional phone lines. One of the biggest benefits of implementing VoIP capabilities is the elimination of large phone bills every month, as these services are significantly cheaper than physical phone lines. The savings associated with switching from traditional phone services to calls made over the internet have reportedly reached 60% and continue to rise.

Another common question about Voice over Internet Protocol is, “How does it work?”

VoIP sends and receives digital audio ‘packets’ of data between any two places in the world via their IP connections. The initial deployment of such a system is fast and cheap, as it doesn’t require the implementation of new hardware or line installations. In fact, more often than not, VoIP phone solutions are as simple as plugging connections into your company computer and hitting ‘go’.

Why do you need it?

Now that you understand exactly what VoIP is and how it works, there are an array of advantages to implementing such a system into your business. These benefits include:

1. Tool Flexibility

VoIP gives your company the freedom to control networks more efficiently, by picking and choosing only those tools that will best support your company’s needs. Many companies that offer communication services allow you to customize your unified communications offering to include several tools such as a messaging platform, video conferencing capabilities, and phone services. The beauty of these options is the freedom to choose one or multiple options based on the everyday workings of your business. This flexibility also allows your business to grow seamlessly because you have the ability to increase or decrease the number of channels active on the network at the click of a button.

2. Application Features

Applications available through a unified communications suite enhance employee productivity by working in collaboration with calls made on the computer. The ability to multitask using features, such as email voicemail delivery, voice call button in an email, and presence information, increases agent efficiency. These phone systems allow employees to provide better service to their customers and allow client retention rates to rise.

3. Built-in Backup Plan

Without virtual phone systems in place, your company runs the risk of losing telephone service due to outages and other unexpected incidents. The costs associated with losing phone service could be immense due to the hours business is down and possible repairs. On the other hand, VoIP allows you to reduce the impact on your business by quickly redirecting calls in response to an outage, or pre-setting routing plans in anticipation of the worst.

4. Remote Capabilities

The lack of fixed phone lines associated with VoIP services gives companies the advantage of supporting remote workers. This way, calls can be made and received from any location through the use of any compatible device. VoIP providers make it easy to transition devices through apps that allow you to set up your own phone extension on any device. Whether you are on the road visiting clients, traveling abroad, or homesick, you have the ability to access all important tools from your mobile device, allowing you to get more done. As the business world incorporates more flexible work arrangements, the productivity provided by these capabilities becomes more and more critical to incorporate into your business.

If you are looking to gain or maintain a competitive edge over your rivals, internet-based services could be the answer. The ability to communicate cheaply and on-the-go, while avoiding the threat of outages, will put your business a step ahead of the rest. And with the quick implementation of these services, you could have these advantages within the next few days.

About the author
The 8x8 Team has made it their mission to inform and educate the public on all things communication technology.
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