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Steps to take before implementing VoIP

Business and Marketing Strategy

 
Convinced by how far the technology has come in recent years and that the quality of the calls have become just as good as that of calls taking place over landlines, as well as by the freedom and the amazing savings you will have on your phone bill, you have finally decided to make the leap, and to usher your company communications into the 21st Century by switching over from traditional business phone lines to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).
 
As great as that is, there are a few critical steps you need to take before implementing VoIP, advises Mitchell Barker, founder and CEO of WhichVoIP.co.za, a directory website containing a comprehensive list of South Africa's top VoIP providers. “For business communications, stellar performance and solid dependability are key, and that is what users have become accustomed to thanks to excellent delivery by landlines, so to ensure that they will get the same from their VoIP, a thorough application impact study should be completed before deploying any system,” Barker says.
 
Brian Driessel, Managing Director at MIA Telecoms suggests checking whether your current network will be able to handle the requirements of VoIP. “In order to work best, VoIP needs sufficient bandwidth, so check your business's current Internet connection and speed to see if it will be able to take the strain. If it doesn't, calls will experience quality issues, such as jitter, meaning that the audio will be continually interrupted and broken up. Checking whether you have enough bandwidth is a simple task, but a crucial one which could save you a lot of hassle in the long-run,” he says. “And instead of doing a complete – and possibly costly overhaul of your existing system – it might also be worth investigating to see if the VoIP provider could simply integrate the system with your current network and telecoms equipment.”
 
Speaking of providers, Barker says choosing one is another important step to take before the VoIP implementation process. “This seems glaringly obvious and logical, of course, but the provider you choose is extremely important. You need to find a provider with a solid reputation, a good track record in terms of professionalism, security and who will ensure that you will have minimal downtime, so that your business communications will run smoothly on a day-to-day basis, and who will be quick to send out technicians and sort out problems when hitches do occur,” he adds.
 
Driessel adds that a VoIP provider should be able to provide reliable, cost-effective access that is flexible and scalable. “Dedicated, reliable and cost effective internet connectivity is as essential to a VoIP implementation as the hosted PBX, enabling the operations, communication and collaboration modern businesses require.”
 
Barker says South African businesses looking for VoIP providers should make a stop at the whichVoIP.co.za website. “On our site, companies can go and compare various providers side-by-side and see exactly what they have to offer. Ask yourself if the potential provider of your choice has price packages that will fit your budget. And do they have flexible plans that will enable you to change if your needs and requirements change down the line?”
 
Lastly, he says there should be a testing phase. “Just as any website goes through a beta testing phase first before it goes live, the VoIP technology should be put through the paces first too, to see how it performs, how your staff copes with it and how it runs on your company's network. It might seem like an extensive checklist to run through, but if you want to reap the many rewarding benefits of VoIP, it is worth taking the trouble,” Barker concludes.
 
 
About www.whichvoip.co.za
WhichVoIP.co.za presents a central view of all the credible VoIP, Hosted PBX, and Wireless Connectivity operators in South Africa, taking the guess-work out of who is offering what in the local market. Completely independent and free to all users, WhichVoIP is the premium one-stop information portal for VoIP, Hosted PBX, and Connectivity in South Africa.
 
Those looking to understand and learn more about VoIP and Hosted PBX and get all the latest news in the industry need look no further than WhichVoIP.co.za’s focused forum, blogs, articles, and technical FAQ section.
 
This research and comparison website allows users to extract research on various VoIP, Hosted PBX, and Connectivity providers, comparing these providers in a side-by-side format, as well as browse a comprehensive directory of credible carriers, providers, resellers, PBX partners, telecom consultants, and support organisations.

Janet Sharp
janet@exposureunlimited.net

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