As a business owner or manager, building and maintaining a successful communication system is essential for everyday operations. After all, when it comes to productivity we are only as good as the systems we rely on daily. To set yourself up for success, we wanted to share a list of best practices you can employ for VoIP success.
Not every VoIP system will depend on an internal network. For example, VoIP softphones may be more reliant on cloud solutions or VoIP service providers as opposed to internal networking. However, when internal network infrastructure is required, you should ensure that the VoIP provider you are selecting will integrate with your existing network. In this case, it’s a good idea to begin VoIP rollout discussions with your IT administrators. During the planning phase, identify at least 5 different VoIP provider options that will integrate successfully with your existing network. Outline the pros, cons, and associated costs of integration during this phase. This will ensure that these tenets are taken into consideration when transitioning to a VoIP provider.
Identify an Appropriate Network Management Solution
Businesses of all sizes should employ a network management solution. For small businesses, a network may be managed by the service provider. In this case, an account manager or customer support will be essential to maintaining a successful VoIP system. In contrast, a larger business may need to hire an internal administrator or in-source an IT team to ensure network stability.
Prepare for VoIP Security
As mentioned above an internal administrator or VoIP service provider is essential for network management. In the same respect, your administrators or service providers should have a security plan in place to protect your network against intrusions like call hijacking. It’s advisable to identify all possible threats beforehand. More importantly, hashing out an action plan in case of an attack is crucial to keeping your communication system online.
Find a Solid Back-up Plan
As with all things in business and life, a solid back-up plan is always necessary. Much like insurance, while don’t hope for these things to occur, but in some cases, unforeseen events may arise that require the use of a backup communication system. To prepare for unforeseen situations with your VoIP network, vet an alternative provider and thoroughly go over migration procedures so that you and your team are aware of the necessary steps to migrate successfully. If migration is not necessary and the challenge is simply intermittent create a communications process to keep your customers in the loop during downtimes and provide alternative communication mediums to ensure you are not leaving anything to chance. An interim outage may be as short as a few hours or in some cases a few days so it’s a good idea to have a plan in place that’s ready to be deployed if one does occur.
Employ Customer Experience Monitoring and Feedback
Your clients are the lifeblood of every business so be sure to keep the feedback loop open. Monitoring their experience via social, support, phone, and email will ensure you have the proper insight and can quickly identify gaps that are negatively impacting user experience. Create a centralized documentation medium and ensure all channels have access to the consolidated documentation process. From a feedback perspective, time is of the essence. The faster you can respond to negative experiences the better.
Final Thoughts on VoIP Best Practices
Similar to all business processes creating a solid implementation or migration plan is essential to a successful process. When it comes to VoIP there are many technical nuances that are best served by a seasoned VoIP advisor.
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