Four Reasons Why Smart Companies Choose Hosted PBX
September 16, 2013
By Mae Kowalke
, TMCnet Contributor
Private branch exchanges (PBXs) are a staple of business as much as the cubicle and the spreadsheet. Any business that has more than one person on staff probably uses one to route calls to the appropriate person, and to deliver voicemail inboxes to each person on staff.
Just as smart companies have reexamined the cubicle and instead now often opt for open spaces and/or telecommuting, so too are smart companies changing the way their PBX (News - Alert) systems work. The new way: Hosted PBX.
Hosted PBX systems are PBX systems in the cloud, usually purchased as a subscription service the way telephone service is a monthly operating expense. Going with a hosted solution makes sense on many levels, but four of the top reasons are for reduced operating costs, reduced capital expenses, better employee management and helping the environment.
Let’s start with brass tacks: Saving money.
Hosted PBX systems start as low as $19.95/month for 50 or more extensions, and when purchased in conjunction with voice-over-IP (VoIP) they can come with unlimited nationwide long-distance and sometimes reduced international calling rates. With a hosted PBX, companies reduce operating expences by shifting the cost and maintenance burden of the PBX from their company to the hosting provider they use. There are no setup costs, no maintenance visits, and no hassles since hosted PBXs are managed by the hosting company.
Anyone can set up a hosted PBX and have it configured in less than half a hour since the system can be managed and set up from a desktop or practically any Internet-enabled device. Several years ago my small design firm opted for a hosted PBX, and it was scarily easy even though none of us at the time knew the first thing about enterprise telephony. While our system was relatively basic, even the most advanced hosted PBX systems are simple to operate so there’s no need for wasting man hours on it.
The second advantage is lower equipment costs. Because hosted PBXes are virtual, there’s no need for a dedicated, refrigerated room in the office for PBX and telephone equipment. There’s no equipment costs at all, too.
A third advantage is the freedom of mobility that comes with a hosted PBX. Unlike a traditional PBX system that requires each employee to be in the same office, a hosted solution can ring to cell phones or various branch offices just as easily as it can ring to the phone on the next desk. This allows employees to move about as needed, a major benefit for business in 2013.
A fourth benefit is saving the earth. While this is a little fuzzier than reduced operating expenses, at the end of the day we all want a good world for our kids. That means taking care of the environment, and hosted PBX systems do just that through less use of copper wire and the ability to have employees more easily telecommute and video conference.
It also allows a business to promote itself as environmentally aware, something that matters to 78 percent of Americans according to a recent Ernst & Young study.
So just as the cubicle is evolving, so too is the PBX. Hosted PBX is the future.
Edited by Rachel Ramsey