The operational benefits of a Hosted VoIP phone service aid and advance any organization. However, our economic foundation was built on manufacturing organizations, and these businesses can advance with the right communication platform.
In the manufacturing sector, operational expenditures have been deferred for years as, rightly so, investment in production improvements have been the priority. However, technology advances and scalability make moving to a Hosted VoIP phone service more affordable and impactful on the financial performance of the business.
An Affordable, but Necessary Investment - If operational investments have been deferred, manufacturing companies have maintained their old, analog phone system. They now are facing challenges in finding replacement parts and are having difficulty in expanding the system to provide features that are now commonplace. Further, traditional phone companies are raising the rates for analog phone services. So, costs are increasing for the phone service itself and the costs of keeping the system on life support are now becoming prohibitive.
The investment in a Hosted VoIP phone service is not nearly in the same investment category as replacing a phone system. Businesses simply purchase VoIP phones and connect to a system hosted by a VoIP provider via the internet. The system itself is owned and maintained by the provider. Not only does this represent a lower investment in the short term, but longer term maintenance and obsolescence is largely mitigated. Additionally, the monthly cost of the phone service itself will likely also decline.
Meeting the Diverse Needs of Manufacturing Companies - Manufacturing businesses come in many shapes and sizes. The physical plant can cover multiple buildings and locations and the employee responsibilities are just as varied. As long as each location is covered by the internal network and has a connection to the internet, it will connect to a single Hosted VoIP platform. The beauty of cloud telephony is that all locations are essentially operating under one system, eliminating the need to purchase and support phone systems for each location or creating expensive connection options.
The telephony needs of office, sales, and plant employees are also diverse. There are different phone options to meet the unique needs, including soft phones that "travel" with staff that are in and out of the office. There are also solutions to connect to overhead paging systems, deploy loud ringers, and other unique requirements of a plant operation.
Driving Benefits Home - There are many benefits that manufacturing businesses are missing if they have not changed from the traditional analog-based phone system. With Hosted VoIP as a platform, these businesses can advance their communication practices. They can streamline calls that may have been directed to different physical locations to a centralized function. Direct dial phone numbers can be put in place to aid functions who would benefit from the ability for callers to reach them without going through a receptionist. Calls can be transferred or employees reached via extension dialing regardless of the physical location. Streamlined auto attendants can route callers quickly to their destination of choice. Ring groups can be set up for departments where multiple employees can support specific caller needs.
Manufacturing companies that are ready to explore the change to Hosted VoIP should research providers who can consult with them on how to best set up their system to maximize the benefits. There are providers who handle all of the programming necessary to meet the company's unique needs and requirements, rather than passing the responsibility for such programming onto the business. This will ensure that the needed change delivers the benefits expected and is adopted by the organization and lessen the anxiety and level of effort they would otherwise experience.
About the author: Mark Greim is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing at sipVine, a provider of a variety of VoIP phone solutions and services. Mark has extensive experience working for start-up or entrepreneurial organizations and has a passion for affordable, reliable, and purposeful technology solutions in those environments.