VoIP and Improved Business Mobility
Mobility is essential for businesses in the modern era. Employees need the flexibility to work from anywhere, whether at home, on the road, or remotely with clients. And customers expect to reach your business no matter where you or they happen to be located.
The solution? Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone systems. With VoIP, your business gains tremendous mobility advantages over traditional landline phones. Read on to learn how VoIP enables a mobile workforce, flexible customer service, and expanded business capabilities from any location.
The Mobile Workforce Powered by VoIP
For companies with employees who are constantly on the go, VoIP offers game-changing connectivity. VoIP systems allow calls to ring on any selected device – desk phones in the office, mobile apps on smartphones, and desktop apps on laptops.
Wherever they are, employees simply need an internet connection to send and receive calls on the full business phone system. It’s as if they never left the office! Let’s explore key benefits:
No Geographic Restrictions
With VoIP, geographic location becomes irrelevant. An employee could be at a satellite office in another state or a hotel room overseas. Perhaps they’re at home but want full access to business calling abilities.
VoIP allows them to use the company phone system anywhere with broadband internet access. There’s no need to be tied to a physical office building just to make and take calls.
Seamless Call Handling
Incoming calls can ring to any designated endpoints, whether desk phones or mobile devices. On the receiving end, clients and customers won’t even recognize the call was fielded remotely.
Outgoing calls display your business’s Caller ID as well, for seamless integration. VoIP makes for smooth call handling that clients never even notice involves remote workers.
VoIP systems unify your business’s communication channels – phone calls, video conferences, instant messaging, call routing, voicemail – into one manageable platform.
With a single interface, employees can handle multiple modes of contact. This unified communications capability remains the same whether they’re working in the office or on the road.
For companies paying for traditional phone lines at headquarters plus remote offices, VoIP saves significantly on expenses. You pay only one monthly VoIP service fee instead of recurring landline bills.
Long distance is also free over VoIP. And smartphones have data plans already, so no incremental costs are incurred for mobile calling.
IT teams can easily add or change VoIP system extensions, call routing, auto attendants, and phone menus from one centralized dashboard. When a new remote employee comes aboard, just provide credentials – no need to ship phones and configure equipment at satellite offices.
VoIP’s flexibility empowers companies to swiftly scale remote teams and reconfigure call flows while reducing headaches for IT staff.
VoIP enables a seamless, mobile workforce that transcends geographic boundaries.
Flexible Options for Customer Service
Today’s consumers expect accessibility from the businesses they patronize. They want to be able to call your company at their convenience, rather than only during working hours. VoIP phone systems allow your business to meet the flexibility needs of on-demand clients.
No More Missed Calls
With VoIP call forwarding options, calls to your office can ring simultaneously on any mobile devices your team desires. Sales reps and support agents no longer miss important customer calls simply because they’ve stepped away from their desks.
If nobody answers, calls route automatically to voicemail which can be monitored remotely. No more missed opportunities due to not being at the phone!
Is your team responsive after hours, or do customers get an answering service? VoIP features like auto attendants, call queues, and time-based call routing allow for customized after-hours experiences.
For example, calls could route to mobile phones carried by on-call staff. Night and weekend calls no longer go to voicemail limbo. Customers reach responsive agents anytime they call your business.
Call Center Capabilities
VoIP systems provide call center functionality, right from the cloud. Capabilities like call queues, interactive voice response with menus, hold music, call recording, and more means built-in tools for customer service excellence.
VoIP call centers facilitate efficient routing and monitoring of high call volumes, out of the box. And remote agents have full access to the same functionalities as on-site staff.
Customers won’t know where your support staff is physically located when they call in. All that matters is that knowledgeable professionals field their inquiries – no matter where the agents happen to be working from.
VoIP provides opportunities to build distributed call centers of home-based agents. Location does not limit your customer service team’s capabilities.
VoIP offers the flexibility today’s customers demand. Your business can serve clients on their schedule, rather than just during office hours. Contact anytime, from anywhere is the new expectation.
Expanded Business Capabilities with VoIP
In addition to supporting mobile employees and customer service, VoIP delivers advantages that expand what your business can do. Let’s look at some powerful capabilities:
With VoIP, you’re not limited by physical phone lines and hardware. The VoIP platform lives in the cloud so you can easily scale up call, message, and conference capacities as needed.
As your business grows, you ramp up service with your provider – no costly equipment investments required. The cloud backend makes growth easy.
Built-in Disaster Recovery
A VoIP phone system centralizes call control and traffic in the cloud, rather than an on-site server. By its distributed nature, VoIP already offers built-in disaster recovery that traditional phone systems can’t match.
No matter what happens at your office location – power outage, internet goes down, fire, flood, etc. – calls continue routing through the cloud uninterrupted. Business continuity is virtually built in.
From interactive voice response menus to call analytics dashboards, VoIP offers advanced telephony features not possible with analog landlines.
Capable VoIP systems have open APIs to integrate with CRM software, help desk platforms, payroll systems, and more. This expands what your business can accomplish by unifying platforms.
VoIP makes it inexpensive to make and receive international calls by providing affordable flat rates. Some providers even deliver local phone numbers from other countries, so prospects abroad perceive you as in-region vendors.
Number porting and worldwide connectivity make VoIP a globalizing force for enterprises. Geographic distance seems to shrink over VoIP networks.
In summary, VoIP solutions provide advanced features, scalability, reliability, integrations, and global connectivity that empower businesses in transformative ways.
VoIP Hardware and Network Considerations for Mobility
To enable a mobile workforce with VoIP phone systems, the underlying network infrastructure is critical. Employees need reliable connectivity and call quality when they’re on the road or working remotely. Here’s how key components impact mobility:
- VoIP Phones – Choose hardware like wireless headsets and mobile apps to maintain seamless calling abilities from any location.
- Routers – Routers should offer QoS and VLAN features to prioritize VoIP traffic, ensuring minimal lag for remote workers.
- WiFi – Office WiFi needs sufficient bandwidth and solid connections to support call quality for mobile endpoints.
- LTE – For remote locations, LTE and 5G provide the internet backbone for VoIP mobility. Stay current on network upgrades.
- Switches – Power over Ethernet switches simplify wiring VoIP phones flexibly across office locations or remote sites.
- Firewalls – Firewalls must allow VoIP protocols like SIP and RTP while also protecting systems from intrusions.
Optimizing Your System for Remote Work
Want to maximize mobility for off-site employees? VoIP systems offer powerful capabilities to keep your team connected anywhere.
Provide smartphone apps so workers have access to the full VoIP phone system from their mobile devices. Enable automatic call forwarding to route office calls seamlessly to any destination. For remote teams, supply VoIP desk phones or conference speakerphones to maintain office-quality group calling abilities.
Ensure your IT department configures remote VPN access into the system backend so traveling or home-based employees can manage voicemail, access dashboards, adjust settings, and take advantage of advanced features. Equip your mobile workforce with wireless VoIP headsets for hands-free calling and comfortable prolonged use on the go.
IT should closely monitor call quality metrics and troubleshoot any issues that arise. Mobility should not come at the expense of clear reliable service. Consider policies that encourage and enable remote work, like reimbursing for high-speed home internet service required to power VoIP access off-site.
Provide user guides, training resources, and support to remote teams so they can leverage the full benefits of the phone system while working flexibly. With planning, policies, training, and the right equipment, your business can rollout VoIP mobility smoothly across the workforce. Just don’t neglect network testing and IT support, or mobility success will be difficult to achieve.
VoIP Mobility Mistakes to Avoid
Enabling a remote workforce with VoIP introduces opportunities as well as potential pitfalls. Companies should beware of common missteps that can undermine mobility success.
Don’t assume your office WiFi, home networks, and LTE connections will necessarily provide sufficient call quality without thorough testing beforehand. Too often, businesses roll out VoIP mobility before validating performance across locations. The result is remote workers struggle with choppy calls and frozen screens.
IT teams sometimes overlook VoIP-friendly firewalls and routers when transitioning to remote work scenarios. Without QoS and proper security rules, performance suffers. Skipping mobility-centric network infrastructure sabotages success.
Spotty wireless coverage at headquarters from too few access points creates frustration for employees when calls drop every time they walk to a conference room or break room. Neglecting robust WiFi hampers mobility.
When staff aren’t offered BYOD credentials to install VoIP apps on their personal devices, you miss an opportunity for enhanced mobility. Workers want the flexibility to integrate business calling with their own smartphones.
Skimping on training for remote troubleshooting or access often requires extra support time from IT staff down the road. Employees benefit from resources to solve issues efficiently on their own.
Assuming any home internet connection will handle VoIP is risky. Slow DSL or mediocre satellite broadband may require upgrades to sustain call quality.
Mobility mustn’t come at the cost of quality. Enabling a dispersed workforce requires forethought, planning, testing, training, and policies for maximum success.
The Future is Now – Is Your Business Ready?
Hopefully this article has shown how VoIP can revolutionize your operations with:
- Flexibility to work productively from anywhere
- Seamless call handling and mobility
- Expanded customer service availability
- Built-in disaster recovery
- Quick scalability in the cloud
- Access to advanced features and integrations
- Affordable global connectivity
The benefits are clear, which begs the question…
Is your business ready to reap the advantages of a VoIP phone system? Check out our analysis of the top VoIP providers to see which one’s best for you, your team, and your customers!