No matter how prepared you are, managing a business across multiple states and/or countries is a great challenge. Not only is it necessary to know what the local business customs are, but it also requires setting up dedicated phone systems in order to make sure that local customers are able to call the branch closest to them. Before VoIP this meant the installment of multiple PBXs across the globe, which was a real money drain due to the costs of maintenance and office leasing.
Now that internet telephony is becoming an industry standard, this process only takes a few clicks – and the hooking up of necessary devices – to have a fully functional cloud phone system that is not only cheap and scalable but can also work anywhere in the world without actually being there physically.
One Global Office to Rule Them All
VoIP systems are based on cloud technology where users are assigned their own virtual PBX that can be customized to their liking from a specific web interface. Within this portal the admin can create a virtually endless number of extensions that can then be assigned to anyone in the company. And since any extension can be accessed from anywhere that has proper internet coverage, employees don’t even have to be in the company’s headquarters to be able to sign into their own account and manage their own dedicated extension as if they were in the office themselves. Simply put, no matter where the various branch offices are located, they can still be part of the same cloud phone system, sharing the same phone number and operating as if they were physically located in the same office building as the headquarters.
Additionally, VoIP has many call handling features, one of which is call transferring that allows anyone picking up a call to pass it onto another employee of the company. However, VoIP solutions can do this step on their own via answering rules, which determine what should happen to incoming calls based on different criteria such as business hours or even caller ID.
Answering rules are especially handy if you own multiple offices in different locations but you still want to make sure that callers are connected to the right office. And the thing is that offices don’t even need to own the same phone number as the headquarters. Since all calls are handled by the same system regardless of which phone number the call is placed to, there is an option to create multiple answering rules from the main phone system manager and simply reroute calls to the corresponding extension belonging to the appropriate branch office. And before you ask, yes, cloud phone systems are more than capable of determining where the call was placed and then forwarding it to the right person without the caller even noticing the transfer.
Planting Phone Systems From a Distance
Being able to provide the same phone system for all offices is highly useful for creating a unified network for all employees and, of course, to save greatly on costs. However, there is one problem with the concept: different offices have different needs and being hooked to the same system may not be one of them. In fact, there are many cases where creating a ‘sub-PBX’ within the main PBX is definitely a better solution, especially for multifaceted companies where branch offices deal with a variety of things. But who said a virtual phone system can’t handle this either?
In fact, enterprise-grade solutions like RingCentral are more than capable of streamlining call handling between multiple locations. This is achieved through the option to set up multiple sites – the sub-PBXs already mentioned – that can be handled from within the main account manager and can also be fully customized to satisfy the different needs of each branch office.
For instance, admins can assign a specific phone number to a branch office and create answering rules that handle any calls placed to that number. Additionally, the system’s admin can appoint a site admin and give that person the same control that they would have if the branch office had its own bespoke phone system. And if that’s not enough, all of these sites are linked to one another meaning that employees can still transfer calls from one site to the other with ease.
Best VoIP Systems of 2020
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