I want to introduce you to another outsourced telephone vendor that might be just what your growing business needs. Instead of installing a hardware based PBX into your business you might be interested in outsourcing your telephone system (1-800 number, on hold, call conferences, and etc) to PBNext.
Competing in this “Virtual PBX space” are Talkswitch, VirtualPBX, Gotvmail and others.
PBNxet writes that their differentiating factor is price. While other companies (Virtual PBX, Talkswitch) have similar offerings and features, PBNext claims that it offers these same features at a more affordable price. Compare PBNext’s 3.9 cents a minute to Virtualpbx at 6.9 cents a minute with restrictions on minutes purchased.
CompTIA reports that Small and mid-sized businesses in the United States plan to increase their usage of converged voice and data communications solutions over the next 18 months, new research commissioned by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA)
The survey of some 300 U.S. businesses with 20-500 employees found that 40 percent are currently evaluating new communications solutions that deliver voice and data applications over a common network, or intend to do so within the next 18 months. Another 18 percent of these businesses are currently deploying a converged solution, or will do so in the next
“These plans for deployment and evaluation are even more impressive when you consider that nearly two-thirds of these companies said they are generally satisfied with their existing communications systems,” said John Venator, president and chief executive officer, CompTIA. “Small and medium-sized businesses clearly believe converged voice and data networks and applications have real business value, whether it is through reducing the cost of internal and external communications systems; streamlining management of voice and data networks; or
improving productivity throughout their operations.”
When asked about unified messaging systems, which provide a common inbox for all email, voicemail and fax messages, 25 percent of SMBs said they have already deployed these solutions and felt it provided “good business value.” Another 41 percent have not deployed unified messaging but said they recognize it would provide good business value.
Asked a similar question about phone and business application integration, such as click-to-dial directories and caller ID integration with customer relationship management (CRM) system, 16 percent of respondents said they have deployed these solutions and feel it provides good business value. Another 47 percent have not deployed them but recognize that it would provide good business value.
Businesses are migrating to converged communications solutions at different paces, based on factors such as comfort level with new technologies; depreciation schedules or obsolescence of legacy voice equipment; or budget availability. Regardless of the driving factor, each installation is likely to involve a certain amount of customization. This will require a more consultative customer and demand a workforce trained in converged applications. CompTIA, the world’s leading provider of vendor-neutral certifications for the IT industry, is currently working with product manufacturers, distributors and others active in the convergence market to develop a professional certification that establishes a baseline standard for an IT professional’s ability to install and support converged data, voice and video communications solutions.
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