Small business startups are always looking for ways to launch their businesses with low initial investments. Until the venture begins to profit, it is difficult to make a business case to spend money on expensive infrastructure. Phone systems are no exception. But the importance of quality communications for a business has startups looking for new technology they can leverage at a lower price. Virtual phone services are becoming a popular choice for many new businesses.
These systems offer end users the same technology and ease of use that they would receive with traditional phone systems, but without the expensive costs of being tethered to the local phone company. Virtual office phone services may not be right for all businesses, but for the majority of startups, they can be a practical choice
Advantages to Using Virtual Office Phone Services
Virtual office phone services may sound like just another buzzword in telecommunications, but their unique advantages have made them major players in the market. Similar to traditional systems, virtual systems offer companies the ability to customize their telephone directory, transfer options, hold messages, and extensions. They can offer small businesses the appearance of a large, modern company, something all startups should aim for today. Staying on the forefront of technology can help organizations gain and hold bigger market shares!
Other advantages with virtual office phone services include low start up and ongoing expenses, the ability to easily customize and add new lines, and advanced features to help mobile workers stay productive. Virtual office phone services also allow startups to install and begin making and receiving calls with virtually no downtime.
Costs, Investments, and ROI
Instead of spending valuable startup capital on traditional systems that will soon become outdated, emerging businesses are finding that the costs of deploying a virtual office phone service are better aligned with their budgets and goals than other more traditional phone solutions. Typically, implementation and on-going costs are lower than traditional systems, depending on the features used. The key to these systems generating high ROIs are their ability to scale as companies grow; an important feature for all startup businesses.
Flexibility and Scalability of Virtual Office Phone Services
As startup businesses grow, it is critical that their infrastructure and technology can grow with them. IT strategy is devoted to ensuring that new solutions are scalable, and virtual phone systems should be too. Virtual office phone services can support multiple users easily, and adding and removing users is a simple process. Because the technology of these systems is hosted remotely, their ability to support multiple locations and remote and mobile workers is key.
Virtual phone services are designed to help companies gather critical business data. Various tools can help managers and other key decision makers generate and analyze reports. The data collected includes call reporting, user management, message retrieval, and call logs. These reports can help managers make decisions regarding employee phone usage and call center productivity. The increased visibility into these statistics can help shape both the short and long-term strategies of a startup.
Usage and Professionalism
The explosion of instant communication, from Twitter to Facebook to LinkedIn, has caused a shift in clients, customers, and vendors. Businesses need to appeal to this transformation by offering instant answers and service to their customers. Phone systems can be a key part of this strategy. The ability to customize out-going messages to help callers get the information they are looking for immediately allows instant gratification. As well, with all voicemails and fax messages being sent immediately to email, or even notification being sent by text message, allows businesses to maintain better contact with clients and customers.
Features and Characteristics of Virtual Office Phone Services
Virtual office phone services offer the same basic capabilities of traditional systems, including call forwarding, call transfer, voicemail notification and storage abilities, and holding and screening options. But the technology takes systems one step higher by offering virtual fax integration, automated availability scheduling, auto-attendant options, and responsive employee directories. Every system has the ability to be customized, so businesses needing more or less options can find solutions that will work for both their budgets and their immediate requirements.
Before investing in new technology, startup organizations should explore the requirements they have, the budget available, and how virtual office phone services fit into their long-term growth plan. These appealing solutions have unique advantages that should be explored before any significant phone system investments are made.
Startups should be sure to consider all the aspects that virtual office phone services provide, as their features are usually more advanced and comprehensive versus traditional systems.