Pros and Cons of different Phone SystemsDanielle Hodgson
If you Google ‘phone systems’, you could easily get overwhelmed. There are so many choices and brands offering business phone systems with great features at great prices. But, with the huge choice, who do you reach out to?
To help, our telecom experts have created a pros and cons list for business owners who are looking for guidance on today’s phone system offering.
Since 2003, we’ve provided telecoms to businesses of all sizes. These range from traditional PBX on-premise systems to cloud-based phone systems. As technology has evolved, we’ve seen a huge shift, especially in 2020, of businesses wanting calling, mobile, collaboration tools and mobility features.
When choosing a business phone system, there are a few questions you need to consider to ensure you find the right solution for your business.
- The first decision you have to make is what kind of system you think you want.
- How many people will need to use the phone system?
- Where you want the equipment hosted (on-premise or in the cloud).
- How much you want to spend per month.
- Whether you need a full phone system that includes physical desk telephones.
- Do you want to use a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) system, which runs over the internet (you’ll need a good WiFi connection)?
- Would you prefer to use a traditional landline telephone service provided by a local or regional phone company?
- Do you need your phone system solution to work not only in the office but at home and on the road?
Once you’ve answered the above, read our list of pros and cons of traditional PBX, VoIP and cloud-based phone systems to help further.
Traditional PBX Landline Phone Systems pros and cons
Traditional phone systems are typically supported by a local or regional phone company. They run via the telephone company’s traditional copper wiring.
To run a landline service, you need on-premises PBX (private branch exchange) hardware that creates multiple extensions and provides simple phone system features, such as call directories and transferring.
Many phone system providers are phasing out landline systems, due to the outdated technology and the costs to repair the hardware.
Pros: Landline phone systems are a reliable time-tested solution to make and receive calls. This phone system has been around for so long that it’s not often you need to train staff on how to use a traditional phone.
Cons: With many phone system providers moving away from landlines, this makes it more difficult not only to purchase but to repair one.
Plus, with BT planning to move away from the traditional landline platform by 2025, it’s only a matter of time before these systems become obsolete.
Our telecom experts say: Best for businesses without high-speed internet access (but getting a better connectivity solution is easier than you may think!)
VoIP Phone System pros and cons
VoIP phone systems make calls through the same internet connection that a business already uses, instead of the copper wires that landlines run on.
With a VoIP system, you get a fantastic feature set not provided with PBX hardware (unless you pay out of your nose for add-ons). Features include insight, monitoring and collaboration tools which help boost productivity.
VoIP systems give businesses flexibility for their employees to be more mobile and work remotely as well as allow a company to personalise how their telephone system works.
Pros: A VoIP phone system is easy to set up, configure to your requirements and are significantly cheaper than a landline. It offers the flexibility you just can’t get with a traditional phone system.
The technology used in VoIP systems means your business can have access to lots of integration options, increasing employee productivity and customer service. [Check out our blog on 14 reasons why you should be moving to a VoIP Phone System]
Cons: These systems rely on your internet connection. If you have weak internet service, this type of phone system won’t work for you.
Our telecom experts say: Best for businesses who want a sophisticated phone system with functionality at an affordable price per month. Great for remote/home working employees.
If you decide that a VoIP system is your next business move, you now need to decide how you want to host it – buy your equipment outright and self-host or have it hosted in the cloud by your telecoms provider.
On-premise VoIP vs cloud-based VoIP
Having a cloud-based VoIP phone system means you will save on the upfront expenditure for onsite equipment, hardware, and SIP trucking (which is what allows you to make and receive calls).
Plus, your IT staff will be responsible for maintenance, repairs and upgrades of the system which could become time-consuming and costly, if they don’t have telecom expertise.
Cloud-Based VoIP Systems pros and cons
Cloud-based phone systems allow businesses to add new lines easily and by choosing a reputable telecoms provider, they’ll take care of the set-up, maintenance, hardware updates personalisation and training for you.
Pros: Businesses typically pay a monthly fee on a per-user basis and can be installed quickly and remotely. Your provider will usually give remote training so you can truly learn the benefits of your new phone system.
What’s more, with the right expertise, you can even get your VoIP phone to integrate with your CRM system, business applications and work seamlessly across all devices.
Cons: If the system goes down for any reason, you have to rely on your provider to fix it as quickly as possible.
Our telecom experts say: Choosing an expert telecoms provider to host your cloud phone system means you don’t have to have an IT department to operate and maintain your system. Getting a unified communications phone system is a great choice for growing businesses that have multiple locations or a flexible workforce. If you want an all in one platform for one fixed monthly cost, get a cloud-based phone system.
Ready to choose a business phone system? Get in touch with our team today.