Communication plays a significant role in the success of any business. This is true regardless of the size of your business or the industry you’re in. Communication involves sharing and transfer of information to employees, customers, and other stakeholders across different locations.
Although you can start your business by communicating with your personal phone, at some point, you’ll need a comprehensive solution to accommodate all your business communication needs. This occurs especially when your firm grows or expands. That’s where a phone system comes in.
This article walks you through all you may want to know about a phone system. You’ll learn its essential features, and much more. Read on.
What Is A Phone System?
A phone system is a communication platform that transmits data between two or more points. In other words, it’s a communication channel that handles business calls, both inbound and outbound.
A business phone system is beneficial in several ways. First, it can allow workers to share resources. For instance, it enables them to transfer calls to one another, thus boosting their efficiency.
Secondly, you can use your phone system in several ways. For instance, a good phone system can make calls, send tech messages, send and receive emails or faxes. Therefore, instead of installing different systems in your business, you can have one phone system to handle most of your communication needs. This helps save on costs.
Besides, most phone system service providers offer services at affordable monthly subscription fees, which is much cheaper than what it could cost you to make calls using your private phone.
A phone system can also allow you to interact with customers 24/7. This helps boost customers’ experience, allowing them to remain connected to you. Therefore, it can enable you to build a strong customer base, thus boosting your competitive edge.
However, you must work with a reliable service provider. That said, if you’re looking to find a service provider for your business phone system, you can consider hiring the Drop Cowboy or any other similar firm in the market.
What Are The Best Features Of A Business Phone System?
Although there are several types of phone systems out there, not all are made equal. Some have modern tools, while others have outdated features. Therefore, not all the available phone systems can provide the best solutions for your business communication needs. That’s why it’s advisable to be very careful when shopping for a phone system.
Some of the features to look at in a phone system include the following.
Mobility means the ease of portability. And the invention of new technologies and the internet have affected all walks of human life. It has impacted how people communicate, interact or do business. For instance, modern technologies allow business owners to manage their operations remotely. Therefore, employers and employees can engage and conduct business remotely.
Remote working is a practice of doing your job from anywhere else other than the designated business physical office. This can be working from home, from a beach, from a restaurant, when traveling, or any other convenient place.
There are several benefits of remote working to both the employer and employees. For instance, it enables employers to save on costs because it eliminates the need for a large office space. It also allows them to access a wider pool of talented individuals from different parts of the world.
On the other hand, remote working enables employees to boost their work-life balance. This is because they can create flexible schedules for themselves and work at any time. However, all these can’t happen if your phone system doesn’t have the right features. One of these is mobility.
Therefore, if you want your employees to continue working remotely, you must find a mobile phone system. The mobility of your phone system allows your remote workers to make and receive business calls on their personal phones. It allows your workers to stay connected anytime and from anywhere. Therefore, they can interact with customers 24/7. This allows most customers to remain connected to you, thus increasing your chances to grow your sales.
- Auto Dialer
An auto dialer is a tool or application that allows you to dial customers’ contacts instead of typing them manually. This allows you to communicate with several contacts within no time, thus saving a lot of time. Also, the auto dialer eliminates the various challenges of making calls like misdialing and call drops, thus boosting your efficiency.
Businesses face a lot of challenges. One of these is time constraints. For instance, you might find a business owner who wants to attend a business meeting, launch a new product, attend to customers, and other private matters, all within one day. If such an individual doesn’t have enough time, some business activities might be forgotten or postponed.
If that happens, it can have a big impact on your business. For instance, it can cause delays in some projects or activities. However, you can avoid this by ensuring you’re saving or managing your time effectively. That’s where an auto dialer feature in your phone system comes in.
Apart from that, auto dialer software can help minimize idle time. Note that, for manual dialing, you’ve to wait until your call is connected. But sometimes, your call might end up not being connected. This increases your idle time.
On the other hand, the auto dialer tool can enable you to spot and skip any time-wasting call. Therefore, auto dialer software helps you save a lot of time, thus attending to more calls per hour. However, you must select suitable software. For instance, you can consider installing a power dialer, predictive dialer, or any reliable tool.
- Integration With Other Applications
Your business requires several applications to operate efficiently. For instance, apart from the phone system, you might also be having other applications like human resources, accounting, marketing, customer relations management software, and others. That’s why you need to select a phone system that can iterate with your other business applications.
Here, integration means the compatibility of your phone system with other business software. In other words, it explains how well or easy your phone system can work with other computer programs. Therefore, you should find a phone system that integrates well with your existing business applications.
One of the major benefits of selecting a compatible phone system is to help save on costs. Note that you can spend a lot of money when you purchase a phone system that’s not compatible with your other existing applications. This occurs especially when forced to change your whole business system to accommodate your new phone system.
Apart from saving on costs, a compatible phone system, for instance, with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software, allows you to gain more insights and access customer contacts. This ensures easy customer contact dialing and call logging.
Besides, a phone system that integrates with a CRM application enables you to manage calls and attend to all calls. This ensures, no customer call goes unanswered, thus improving their experience.
- Auto Attendant
An automated attendant feature ensures all customer calls are always responded to immediately. This can be through recorded voice messages or by transferring callers to the next available representative. This goes a long way in boosting customers’ experience, thus staying connected to your business. Therefore, if you’re looking to always respond to your customers’ calls, be sure to find a phone system with an auto-attendant feature.
Customers need a quick response any time they make calls to your business. Therefore, you can disappoint them if you fail to answer their call.
Failure to answer your customers’ calls can have a big impact on your business. For instance, they can decide to find help elsewhere or your competitors. This causes you to lose sales in general. That’s why there’s always a need to engage your customers whenever they call you.
However, sometimes you might be too busy to attend to your customers’ calls. In other instances, they might reach out to your business during non-working hours or when all your representatives are offline. In such a case, you might consider finding a business phone system with an automated attendant feature.
- Voice Mail
A voice mail is a computer program that allows callers to leave voice messages. Therefore, you shouldn’t be worried when you’re busy or offline. Why? Because you can always take advantage of a voice mail feature to keep callers always engaged with you.
Sometimes a technical hitch might occur, thus hindering your phone system from auto-responding to your customers’ calls. In such a case, your phone system should also have a voice mail feature.
There are several benefits of having voicemail software in your phone system. For instance, unlike written messages, voice mail messages can’t get lost or distorted. Therefore, you’re always guaranteed to receive or retrieve the original message as the sender intended it. This allows you to provide suitable responses to your customers, which helps improve their satisfaction.
Besides, no caller is happy when put on hold. Therefore, when you put your customers on hold, they can get annoyed or disappointed, thus losing trust in your business. But you can avoid this by having to select a phone system with a voice mail feature.
As earlier noted, a voice mail allows customers to record and leave voice messages. So, even when you’re on another call, you can let customers to leave voice messages instead of putting them on hold.
Also, voice mail messages allow you more time to respond to your customers’ queries. Therefore, you’re able to give accurate and suitable responses. This is because when you retrieve voice messages, you can analyze them to help find the best solution to your customers’ problems. So, you can be able to provide personalized responses to your callers.
- Call Forwarding
A call forwarding feature enables you to re-direct inbound calls to another phone or person. Call forwarding is important, especially when your workers are operating from different offices or locations. Not only does this promote the experience of customers, but it also enables workers to collaborate. This is because employees can transfer calls and share information with each other adequately.
Although you might hire one receptionist to answer all your calls, sometimes such a person might not be in a position to answer all customers’ concerns. For instance, some receptionists are trained professionals on matters to do with customer service only. So, they might not have enough expertise to deal with other departmental issues.
In such a case, your receptionist should be able to forward the calls to relevant individuals. That’s why you need to find a business phone system with a call forwarding feature.
- Call Waiting
A call waiting is a phone system that notifies you that there’s an additional call coming in. This allows you to decide whether to keep the incoming call on hold, forward it to another person or prompt the caller to leave a voice message. Here, the idea is to avoid not responding to your new caller.
Sometimes you might be on a call, but at the same time want to get notified when another person calls you. If that is the case, you may want to find a phone system with a call waiting feature.
- Call Conferencing
Call conferencing is computer software that allows you to conduct video meetings with multiple people but from different locations. It allows you to interact with employees, customers, and other stakeholders in real-time. This helps improve business communication and efficiency.
Although most businesses are opting for remote working, they still need to hold meetings. For instance, business owners might want to update their workers about the progress of the business.
In other scenarios, a business might decide to hold live events with customers or demonstrate product usage. In such a case, video calls are vital. That’s where a call conference feature in your phone system comes in.
Effective communication is a must for any business looking to remain relevant and competitive in the long run. It allows stakeholders to exchange information with ease, thus boosting business efficiency.
However, to achieve this, you must have a suitable phone system. Besides, your phone system should have the right features for your business needs. So, if you’re looking to have the best phone system, you can consider the above-explained features.