The first rule of technology purchases is always to ask if it enhances or hampers your business. You may be thinking, how can a new system hamper my business? Believe it or not, the biggest mistakes are in Voice Telephony and Internet services ...
When it comes to technology, think as a business not as a consumer!
Due to the pandemic, a lot of companies have gravitated towards Teams and Zoom, not just for the one-on-one or one-to-many virtual conferences and meetings and both entities (Teams and Zoom) have tried to capitalise on this by offering standard Telephony functions, starting with 'break-out' calls from their networks to the outside of the world.
"The world of Teams and Zoom are closed ecosystems!"
They have had to make technical additions to their respective networks in order to allow calls in to and out of their networks. Large network devices known as Session Border Controllers (SBCs) link with, what we term SIP Trunks (virtual voice lines, provided by 3rd part suppliers) that back-link with traditional voice networks (landline and mobile numbers).
Whilst this sounds like a great idea and, to be honest, there is nothing wrong with the concept until you consider how calls come back into your organisation. Teams and Zoom cannot match the inbound call routing of any telephone system they were not designed to be on. They both have some functionality, but nowhere near the capability that most customers would require to ensure that an incoming call reaches the right person and the call gets answered promptly to increase productivity and customer satisfaction measures.
In October 2021, I was called into a fairly sizeable organisation that had replaced a ShoreTel Telephony system with Teams Telephony (as part of an overall IT Support contract). Inbound calls were not routing correctly, there was also an issue between Microsoft Teams itself and their SBC and SIP Trunk provider, as well as trying to use their desktop computers as a phone with USB headsets.
The company had hundreds of calls a day, and is a typical old-school firm where all calls go to reception and are then distributed from there!
One of the main functions not available on Teams is the ability to see if a person is already on a call. Teams uses Outlook to determine if a person is 'busy' or available. Now, let's face it, you don't have time to put your Outlook on 'busy' every time you answer a call, or do you?
A simple BLF (Busy Lamp Field) on a standard phone system does just that. Calls were being cut off mid-flow and call quality was poor due to technical issues. In short, Teams was replaced with a Hybrid IP system of my recommendation and order has been restored and complaints from their clients have all, but ceased.
"Internet connections are another area which can cause a problem!"
I have seen many small businesses (up to 50 employees), still running on an ADSL or FTTC line and worse still, on a residential contract. Firstly, there are no Service Level Agreements (SLAs) on any type of public broadband service, be it a residential or business contract, on part fibre (FTTC) or even full fibre, except in certain very special cases.
And secondly, Terms and Conditions are of the utmost importance when you are running a business. It is no use moaning afterwards when a supplier takes two or three days to repair a fault to say, "I'm running a business and need my internet connection!" By that time, it's often too late (unless you have a 4/5G mobile network backup service) or pick up all the company emails (very often customer orders) from home.
Think as a business not as a consumer, otherwise it could seriously cost you your reputation.
Until next time ...
Would you like to know more?
If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like me to solve your technology problems, it may be a great idea to give me a call on 01604 926100 or take a look at my website which you can find by clicking here.
The word 'Technology' has too many connotations in today's world!
Where do we start? Simple terms like 'IT' and 'Telecoms'? or terms that appear NOT to have an actual meaning at all!, e.g. 'Internet of Things (IoT).
Technology also encompasses specialist products and services like 'Rugged' and 'Tough' android devices, Lone Worker Software, panic alarm devices, smart energy devices, low energy lighting, credit card terminal (PCI DSS) security, indoor/ outdoor Wi-Fi systems, Ultrafast Gigabit internet connectivity, access control systems, industrial IoT circuit controllers.
BTS UK can consult from simple solutions to the most complex, provide some of the products through a wholesale channel, bring together a multi-disciplined 'Task Force' to deliver and implement complete Technology 'projects'.
I am your technology problem solver and I look forward to helping you.
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