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My Phone Company Loves Me....Not!

Posted by Mark Greim on Aug 28, 2018 9:41:55 AM

The fact is that analog-based business phone systems and service are becoming a dying breed. Many businesses are waking up to the fact that their phone service company has given them little reason to remain a long-term and loyal customer. As businesses have made the switch to VoIP phone service throughout the last decade, traditional phone service providers have been grasping to hold onto their margins and their customers. Let's examine the evidence:

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers, VoIP Phone Service, Telecom Term Agreements

Perform a VoIP Comparison for Your Company Phones

Posted by Mark Greim on Mar 14, 2017 10:15:00 AM

When evaluating your company phone system and service, a VoIP comparison is necessary to evaluate the opportunity before you. This VoIP comparison will take you down two separate evaluations: one, to compare your existing system and service with a VoIP alternative and, two, evaluating the differences in VoIP providers.

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Tags: Phone System Replacement, Changing Phone Service Providers

Narrowing the List of Hosted VoIP Providers

Posted by Mark Greim on Oct 24, 2016 11:07:28 AM

If your business is ready to make the switch to hosted VoIP phone service, or you are ready to look for alternatives to the national hosted VoIP providers, how do you narrow down the seemingly large group of alternative providers in the marketplace?  It isn't an easy task and it will take a little effort.  However, the reward for find the right solution for your business will benefit you for years to come.

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Tags: voip service provider selection, Hosted VoIP, Changing Phone Service Providers

Break Up with Your Old Phone Company

Posted by Mark Greim on Dec 1, 2015 1:30:00 PM

Go ahead, break up with your old phone company!  What have they done to advance your business, lately or ever? How are your treated when you call?  Have your rates ever gone down?  Many businesses have found a new partner and made the move to Hosted VoIP Phone Service.

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers, VoIP business phone services

Why Reward the Telephone Company?

Posted by Mark Greim on Oct 14, 2015 8:48:00 AM
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Tags: Technology in Business, Changing Phone Service Providers

sipVine Blog | Small Business Bullish on Hosted VoIP

Posted by Mark Greim on Jun 17, 2015 8:47:13 AM

Small businesses are rapidly moving toward VoIP, and competition in the VoIP category has never been higher.  Thus, it is a great opportunity for businesses to take advantage of the competition for their services.  The challenge is to narrow down the list of VoIP providers and make a selection that will be best for your business over the long-term.

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers, small business phone service

Hosted VoIP: Full Service vs. Self Service

Posted by Mark Greim on May 20, 2015 11:21:10 AM

One of the big debates between providers of Hosted VoIP services centers around whether to off source account servicing to the customer or deliver account maintenance activity as a part of the service.  In either case, it can be a point of differentiation.

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers, Phone System Administration

Changing VoIP Providers: Getting it Right

Posted by Mark Greim on Feb 17, 2015 10:00:00 AM

Not too long ago, this article would have focused on changing your business phone service from a traditional phone service provider to a VoIP provider.  Hosted VoIP services are becoming widely accepted as the technology of choice for the small to mid-size business market, manifested by the fact that many companies are now switching from one VoIP Provider to another.  It is also a signal that selecting a provider at the outset needs careful research and deliberation.

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers

Auto Renewals: A Bad Telecom Legacy

Posted by Mark Greim on Feb 3, 2015 11:12:00 AM

As a business, you're excited about the opportunity to evaluate new technologies and drive benefits to your organization.  After all, a Hosted VoIP system is becoming commonly accepted as not just the technology of the future, but of the present.  Your peers in your industry are moving to these services and they come highly recommended.  You've calculated the benefits to your business, determined your return on investment, and selected your new hosted VoIP provider.  Now, you turn to your existing telephone service and, after struggling to even find the right person to talk to, find out that, BAM, your service was auto renewed for another year!

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Tags: Changing Phone Service Providers, Moving Phone Service

sipVine Blog | How to Determine the Best Phone Service Provider

Posted by Mark Greim on Jun 27, 2012 8:48:00 AM

Deciding upon the best phone service provider can be challenging for any business.  Given new technology, there are a host of new options available to you in the marketplace and you are no longer bound to your traditional telephone provider.  You should start by determining your organization’s ability/desire to utilize new technology in your communication practices and identifying the characteristics of a phone service provider that will meet your expectations.

If your company desires to utilize new technology in your communication practices and you want to keep the capital expenses low for such an endeavor, you can consider a hosted phone service provider.  This literally opens up the competition to a number of great providers.  These providers provide both the phone service and phone system, as the phone system is provided in a cloud environment and the service is delivered over the internet.  Additionally, if your company has points of presence in multiple cities or has virtual employees, they all can be on a common phone system and you can consolidate service providers!

The process of narrowing down your potential list of hosted phone service providers can be
quite daunting.  Set your expectations high, as new entrants in this marketplace have helped push customer service to new heights.  Here is a list of questions for potential service providers that can help you narrow the list:

  1. Describe your approach to customer service.  Do I have an account team to rely upon?  How are requests for service handled and are there multiple ways to create a service ticket?
  2. Do you conduct a consultative session with me on customizing the configuration for the hosted phone service so that it conforms to how we do business?
  3. How do you handle VoIP voice quality management?  Do you deploy a device on our network or do you manage this solely by bandwidth expansion?
  4. Describe your hosted platform.  Is it located in a secure data facility?  What redundancies are built in? 
  5. What disaster recovery options are available to me with your service?
  6. Given our industry, what features do you believe we will benefit the most from?

These questions will help qualify candidates and you can narrow down competitiveness of bids from the providers who answer the above qualifications to your satisfaction.  First and foremost, judging the potential provider on their willingness and ability to get to know you and your needs through the qualification stage is a great indicator of the type of service they will provide.  Those providers who are experienced in working in multiple industries and can provide the consultation necessary to appropriately customize the solution to meet your expectations will clearly rise to the top.

Many focus on the features, coolness factor, and price, but fail to be able to truly understand your business and what is important to you.  Your business deserves to be supported by a provider who can be seen as your phone department rather than a vendor.

About the author:  Mark Greim is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing at sipVine, a provider of a variety of digital phone solutions and services. Mark has extensive experience working for start-up or entrepreneurial organizations and a passion for affordable, reliable, and purposeful technology solutions in those environments. 

 

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Tags: voip service provider selection, Technology in Business, Changing Phone Service Providers

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