The private branch exchange (PBX) was initially designed to make telecommunications more affordable and reliable for businesses. With the advent of the PBX, businesses no longer had to purchase separate telephone lines for users or utilize third party providers. This was a big upgrade.
Yet while PBX systems offer an upgrade over traditional switchboards, they still have some major drawbacks. For instance, they are still very expensive and require a hefty amount of capital and operational expenditures. They also require access to expert IT personnel, who know how to update and maintain them.
While many businesses continue to use traditional PBX systems today, a growing number are instead choosing to leverage cloud PBX offerings. Now, massive and complex PBX systems can be virtualized, enabling businesses to save money, while becoming faster and more agile.
A cloud PBX system, for instance, lives offsite in a managed, hosted facility. This drastically reduces costs for businesses, as they do not have to worry about performing any expensive maintenance work. Instead of getting blindsided by unexpected service fees, businesses gain access to predictable monthly charges, as the majority of programs charge on a per-user basis.
What’s more, hosted PBX systems are incredibly easy to scale. Most companies allow you to add user licenses as they are needed. This process is much harder for a business using a traditional PBX system, which is not ideal for a growing organization. Businesses need to be able to scale overnight, in order to accommodate any volume of incoming customers.
Here are some of the top benefits that come with using a cloud PBX system:
The cost of downtime varies wildly from business to business. According to Gartner, it can run anywhere from $140,000 per hour to $540,000 per hour. Many organizations, however, cannot recover from such hefty losses.
Fortunately, businesses do not have to worry about uptime and performance issues when using a cloud PBX system. A cloud provider, for instance, will store all infrastructure offsite, in modern and secure facilities for disaster recovery. These facilities are typically fortified with redundant, high-speed fiber internet connections so that if a problem is detected on a circuit, a switch can be automatically made. Analog phone lines can also be offered for additional voice protection.
Performance, stability, and security are essential for providing great customer service. Advanced monitoring is needed to detect issues before they impact network communications. It’s highly resource intensive, however, to this in-house. Most cloud PBX providers offer this service for customers.
If something goes wrong with a cloud PBX system, all you have to do is contact customer support. Cloud providers offer guaranteed quality, backed by a service level agreement. If an issue arises, it’s the provider’s job to fix it. This is a big help for businesses with overburdened IT teams. Instead of spending all of their time fixing backend communications, IT teams can be freed to focus on higher level tasks across the enterprise.
Large enterprises also need to consider how well data-intensive voice services function across multiple branch locations. It’s not always easy, however, and businesses often suffer from a lack of visibility and control across the network.
Some cloud PBX providers address this issue by offering software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN). With SD-WAN, businesses can set policies that ensure all applications receive adequate resources across the network. SD-WAN should be a key component for any business considering a cloud PBX solution.