Today it’s possible to have a data warehouse in the cloud that you can access with business intelligence software running as a service and connect to cloud-based ERP like Microsoft Dynamics. Sales and marketing people are likely familiar with Salesforce.com, the leading SaaS CRM. SaaS is also becoming the standard for order management, compensation, quote production and configure, electronic signatures, contract management and more. Savings from these systems can run into the millions. Along with all the above mentioned mission critical systems voice communications has also become a cloud offering. Gone are the days of having to pay a technician to come to your business and manage, update or change your phone system. Bandwidth has become so cheap that Voice over IP is quickly becoming the preferred method of business communications and it can be delivered from the cloud.
1) Low cost of entry and pay as you grow
In any SaaS model one of the biggest benefits is there is no front end CapEx to buy equipment or software. Cloud voice communications is no different, you get everything you need including handsets with no upfront investment and a small fixed monthly operating expense. Cash flow is critical for business and no company wants a large CapEx equipment cost with a depreciating asset weighing them down. Another great thing about a a cloud phone system is if you need more phones or open another location turn up is quick, phones are shipped pre-configured and your bill is adjusted to account for the additional phones. Accounting is simplified and you pay as you grow.
2) Vendor is responsible for upgrades, uptime and security – Future proof
In a cloud based system as soon as new features are introduced, they get rolled out to customers. You won’t have to worry about another large capital equipment or software update a few years down the road because updates are included free of charge. Security can be another headache when deploying your own system. In a cloud system the vendor is responsible for security and likely has a more sophisticated network and IT expertise. Cloud providers have robust and redundant networks guaranteeing more uptime than a single company can afford on their own.
3) Limited or No IT resources
Many smaller businesses have no IT professionals – and those that do typically have two or fewer. IT is responsible for many mission critical systems and often do not have experience in voice communications. In a cloud system voice is simplified and IT can manage the system from a web application and leave the technical detail to experts in the cloud. Companies with no IT support can lean on 24/7 cloud technician support who will manage the system for you at no additional cost.
4) Collaboration and Unified Communications
On a cloud system all branch locations as well as the corporate HQ are on the same system or instance and that allows for secure internal communications, instant messaging, 3 digit dialing, file sharing and more. you want communications integrated into your business processes and with cloud based communications you can do it.
5) Work Anywhere
Most companies have remote employees, road warriors or executives who travel. In a cloud solution remote employees need only have an internet connection and they can connect to there desk phone remotely using a mobile app on any mobile device. Calls will automatically ring their mobile without forwarding and voicemails stay on the phone system. Calls and instant messaging capability, presence management, all the functionality of being in the office will exist on any mobile device the employee may be using and without the need for complicated configuring or VPN giving them the flexibility to work anytime, and from anywhere.
There are many other benefits to a cloud based VoIP communications system but those are five that I think any business can relate to and benefit from. There’s never been a better time to upgrade your business communications, unify employees and increase productivity by making a move to a cloud business phone solution. You’ll increase your bottom line, add security and reliability to your business and become a more agile competitor in the marketplace.