Evolving from a traditional phone system to a hosted PBX (a.k.a. cloud PBX) is a smart move – which is why more and more businesses across the country are making the switch each year. Indeed, the only regret that most of them have is that they did not do it sooner!
With this being said, it is important to ensure that your transition is structured, streamlined and strategic.
To that end, below we share the steps you should take to ensure that you get the most out of your investment.
5 Best Practices for Hosted PBX Implementation:
1. Identify Stakeholder Groups
While each business is different, generally speaking there are at least 3 key stakeholder groups that should be involved in your implementation process: executives, IT staff, and end users. Understanding what each stakeholder group needs and wants from the hosted PBX system is vital to managing expectations, proactively spotting potential risks, and ensuring that there are no unwelcome surprises after the system goes live.
2. Create a Needs Document
Based on consultation with your stakeholder groups, you want to create a cohesive needs document that maps out what your eventual hosted PBX system must deliver and offer (e.g. number of phones, lines, extensions, etc.). Ideally, you want to get buy-in and consensus on this document, so that everyone is on the same page and headed in the same direction.
3. Analyze the Infrastructure
Unlike on-premise systems, hosted PBX systems reside off-site at your provider’s location – which means that there is little or no hardware investment aside from (if necessary) a high quality managed router, and affordable certified VoIP phones.
However, you nevertheless still need to analyze your network infrastructure to ensure that you have the bandwidth speed necessary to drive your system – particularly if it will be accessed by several end users. There are several tests that measure speed, quality and reliability, and will identify if hardware upgrades are advised or necessary.
4. Create an Implementation Timeline
Again unlike on-premise systems, hosted PBX systems implement rapidly – because there is no complex hardware to install and configure. However, it is important to note that the process is not as simple as “flicking a switch”, because the system should be fully tested immediately after implementation to ensure that everything is working the way it should.
As such, it is wise to create an implementation timeline that allows for the above to happen when it causes the least amount of disruption to your staff and/or customers. For this reason, many businesses opt to schedule their implementation over a weekend (however, this is not necessary as there are ways to minimize or eliminate disruptions, such as a multi-stage implementation).
5. Train Staff to Get the Most of the New System
One of the most impressive and important advantages of a hosted PBX system, is the array of enterprise-grade advanced calling features: everything from video and web conferencing, to voicemail-to-text, and one-number-service and more. And if you plan on using your system in a call center environment, your staff will be amazed at the innovative tools they have at their disposal.
Naturally, discovering these features and tools and becoming familiar with them takes a little bit of time. As such, your implementation process should factor in staff training. Be assured that this is something your people will WANT to do, because they will immediately and clearly see how the new system helps them do their job more effectively, efficiently and enjoyably.
At Votacall, we ensure that our customers align with and benefit from all of these best practices. This includes selecting stakeholder groups, defining needs, analyzing and test infrastructure, creating an implementation timeline, and helping staff embrace the new hosted PBX system.
To learn more, contact us today. Your consultation is free.