Two primary concerns of prospective customers of VoIP applications are internet reliability and disaster recovery. Properly administered and configured, a hosted digital phone service can lessen these concerns.
At sipVine, we’ve taken several steps to eliminate key points of potential failure and provide our customers with options in the event of an outage or disaster at their location.
1. Centralized PBX – The nature of a hosted service is that the company is using a PBX at a secure, off-site location. This removes any localized PBX hardware issues a customer may encounter. sipVine deploys fully redundant PBX clusters built in an active/passive configuration. This means that there is always a back-up ready to be put in service in the event of an equipment failure. These systems “talk” to each other every second to make sure one is on-line, so if the active system fails, the passive system takes over automatically. This structure also allows us to routinely perform a full reboot of the system for preventative measures without any downtime for our clients.
2. Multiple Connections to the PSTN and Internet – sipVine also maintains redundant connections to the public telephone network and the internet. We ensure that our normal internet and voice traffic only takes up approximately 30% of our capacity over any single connection so we’re able to withstand significant spikes in activity.
3. Automatic Registration to Active Internet – The customer is able to choose how redundant they want to be at their location. Some choose to have back up internet connections from separate providers. sipVine’s service automatically registers to the whatever internet is active at the customer’s location.
4. Remote Forwarding – In the event of a local outage, customers can quickly call into our service from a cell phone to remotely forward their main line or DIDs to their cell phones or branch location. This is a unique benefit of hosted applications, as an outage or cut of their phone lines or internet connection would have put them totally out of service. Even if they do not forward the numbers immediately, their calls are not lost as they roll to their company voicemails.
5. Registration of Phones at an Alternative Location – One of the great features of sipVine’s hosted VoIP service is that customer’s phones will re-register wherever an active internet connection exists. In the event of a local disaster or significant outage, a customer can take their phones to another location all-together (employee homes, branch locations, etc) and their service will be live. Even if all the phones were placed at numerous different locations, they could continue to receive and transfer calls just as if they were under the same roof!
Though these steps, we’ve attempted to create as much piece of mind as possible for our customers. No system is infallible, but minimization of risks and elimination of as many negative scenarios as possible turns general uncertainty of moving to new technology into a potential benefit in case of an outage or local disaster.
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.