September 24, 2010
IVR Systems: The Differences between Hosted and Onsite
By Juliana Kenny, TMCnet Web Editor
As a leading provider of IVR Systems, Plum Voice offers both onsite and hosted IVR solutions. There are benefits to both systems, but it is important to make the distinction so that businesses can properly choose which system is more appropriate for their needs.
Starting with a hosted IVR solution and migrating to a full onsite one is an option for a growing business as the volume of calls increases. Check out the advantages of hosted versus onsite below, as provided by Plum Voice:
Hosted IVR Solutions
Hosted solutions enable the customer to get up and running more quickly with less time and cash spent. If using a hosted solution, the telephony lines, the telephony gateway, and the VoiceXML interpreter software all reside in multiple data centers. This location-based software enables the manager to be free of telephony line management as well as purchasing a VoiceXML (News - Alert) gateway, hardware or speech recognition licenses.
Simplifying the infrastructure requirements for the enterprise customer, hosted solutions are managed by the provider as well as monitored to ensure solid service.
Hosted systems also should be backed by fault-tolerant network infrastructures to guarantee continuous system availability should a component fail. Plum's IVR systems operate in multiple facilities throughout the U.S. and Europe, and include both internal and external monitoring tools.
Gateway (News - Alert)-only hosting and full application hosting are the two main "flavors" of hosted IVR solutions. Gateway-only hosting means that the provider of the system hosts the IVR gateway, but the application itself is served by the customer. Full application hosting requires the provider to serve as host for the gateway and the application.
Onsite systems allow for integration with a customer’s PBX (News - Alert), ACD, PSTN, and/or VoIP telephone connectivity. Onsite systems can sit physically closer to databases or other IT systems, eliminating network latency.
Customers may prefer onsite solutions if the business requires long-term IVR system management, and the system can be managed either by the customer or by the provider. With the system itself living on the customer premise, the onsite solution can prove to be more cost-effective for the enterprise.
Turnkey systems can include all hardware, platform software, and application software, customized and integrated as the customer prefers. An onsite IVR system may also be more secure than hosted solutions as the system resides behind a company's firewall.
Juliana Kenny graduated from the University of Connecticut with a double degree in English and French. After managing a small company for two years, she joined TMC (News - Alert) as a Web Editor for TMCnet. Juliana currently focuses on the call center and CRM industries, but she also writes about cloud telephony and network gear including softswitches.