Don’t feel overwhelmed when it’s time for your business to choose a PBX system. There are numerous PBX system providers available, and it’s only a matter of deciding which is most compatible with your company’s needs. Check out our chart below to read more about what customers are saying about VoIP providers and their PBX systems.
Understanding PBX Systems
For those unfamiliar with what goes on behind the scenes when you make a call to a large business, a system called a PBX is responsible for all the hidden magic. PBX stands for private branch exchange.
A PBX controls the switching of telephone connections, and the linking of telephone lines, which ensures your incoming or outgoing calls are directed correctly within your business. A PBX is a switchboard system that differentiates between internal and external calls. It can route incoming phone calls to separate extensions within the same company at an affordable cost.
There are basically three types of PBX systems, and it’s important that you know the differences between them when choosing a PBX system for your office.
IP PBX: Internet Protocol PBX is a general term that may refer to either a hardware or software system. You can build your own IP PBX and maintain it onsite. For example, with Asterisk you can build your own open-source software IP PBX for free.
Hosted PBX: A hosted PBX is a type of IP PBX in which an off-site service provider handles your business’s incoming and outgoing calls in a PBX system that they host and maintain at their location. For example, Jive offers a hosted PBX solution for $21.95 per user per month for businesses with 50 or more users.
Virtual PBX: A Virtual PBX System is a type of hosted PBX that is hosted entirely online through cloud technology. These are also owned and maintained by your service provider. For example, RingCentral has a cloud PBX solution for $19.99 per user per month for a business with 100 or more users.
How PBX Systems Benefit Your Company
To understand how a PBX system can be a more affordable option for your business, consider a small business of ten employees. At any given time of the day, it’s likely that maybe five or six employees are using their phones at once, but it’s doubtful that all ten employees will use their phones at the same time. If not all employees are simultaneously occupying a phone line, then why pay for an individual line for each employee? With a PBX system, your employees will share lines with their own extensions, thereby creating a more cost efficient arrangement.
VoIP PBX systems include lots of great features such as call waiting, three-way calling, and call forwarding, etc.
- Call Waiting: This feature lets you answer a phone call, and then place it on hold while you answer another incoming call.
- Three-way Calling: This option allows you to add a third party connection to your current two-party phone call.
- Call Forwarding: When a phone call is made to one number, this feature gives you the ability the transfer the incoming call to another specified number.
- Caller ID: This feature identifies and displays the telephone number of the incoming call.
- Automated Attendants: An automatic recording answers the incoming call and provides a menu of options for the caller with this feature. The automated attendant can direct the call based on the extension that the caller dials.
- Conference Call: With this option, three or more parties can take part in a joint telephone conversation at the same time.
Additionally, IP PBX systems can further enhance your business productivity and customer service satisfaction with the following capabilities:
- Call Queues: An IP PBX allows you to queue callers to certain departments, such as customer support or sales, to ensure customers are assisted in a timely manner.
- Voicemail to Email: With an IP PBX system you have the opportunity to forward your voicemails to your email for easier access to play back messages from your computer or handheld devices.
- Call Tracking: IP PBX systems offer audit trails and usage tracking so that businesses can monitor their phone activity, call patterns, and traffic statistics.
- Sophisticated Caller IDs: Because phone calls are computer based, customers’ information can be linked to their telephone numbers and automatically pulled up on the computer screen, increasing customer satisfaction and decreasing the amount of time spent on each phone call.
- Call Routing: Switch your call routing preferences at different times of the day such as during office hours or after office hours to better accommodate your customers’ needs with an IP PBX system.
Don’t be intimidated by all of this new information. At Voxilla.com, we want to make it easy for you to browse through PBX system service providers to find the best fit for your company. Most providers also offer excellent customer support to make implementation of a PBX system that much easier.