Businesses today are entrenched with the notion that business telephone service should be delivered by the telephone company. After all, the roots of the telephone companies trace back to the invention of the telephone itself in 1876. Although much has changed over the years, the technology is old. Because the physical plant deployed by the telephone companies is so long in the tooth, the margins on this business are quite high. There is no wonder why telecoms are working so hard to keep their customers on this old technology and avoiding the cannibalization of their business to their own VoIP platforms.
There's a lot at play here. Because the large telephone companies are publically traded, there's significant pressure to deliver quarterly earnings growth. Such pressure thwarts investment in new technologies and converting existing customers to such technology. When earnings growth is required while facing double digit percentage losses in customers year after year, the expense side of the equation is hit hard. Pressure to reduce costs of customer service leads to off-shoring decisions or other cut-backs in service.
All of this could have been avoided if the companies with their roots in the age of invention actually embraced invention and moved their customers to such platforms. Avoiding such innovation has opened the door for alternative providers. Similar to what cell phone technology has done to the residential landline business, VoIP providers have become the new standard for business phone service and have taken aim on the traditional providers of telephone service.
Still, it is amazing to hear about businesses with "loyalties" to the traditional telephone companies. What have they done to deserve such loyalty? Auto renewals of term contracts? Non-dedicated customer service teams? Long wait times and transferring between departments until frustration trumps the desire to make the change you're looking for? All of the above reasons are among those cited for businesses switching to VoIP, alongside, of course, a desire to move to a technology platform that can actually advance the business.
As a business, examine what your customers and suppliers look like. Do they look and act like your business? They should. There's much to be gained by working with a company that has the same character and values displayed by your own business. Moreover, you can find hosted VoIP companies in your own community or ones who service your business as if they were next door.
It's time to explore what hosted VoIP can do for your business. The first step is to look in the mirror and see the type of company you'd like to do business with. Research hosted VoIP companies, exploring their technology, approach to customer service, and philosophies on term contracts. You will delight in the application of the technology for your business, advance your communication practices, and stop rewarding the telephone company!