A Guide To The Different Types of Business Telecoms Systems

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This guide covers the pros and cons of various phone systems used by businesses, including

  • Landlines (PSTN)
  • Cloud and On Premises VoIP SystemsWe aim to give an overview of each, explaining what the benefits of each system are as well as the consideration a business should make before investing in one over another.

When choosing a business telecom system, it is important to have a goal set in mind. You should first make a list of all the features you would be looking for in a phone system and then try to find the closest match to that list which still fits within your budget. Some of the features you might be looking for include:

  • Making calls from a computer
  • A system that support work from home
  • Call recording
  • Auto-attendants
  • Hunt groups
  • Easy to repair

The following are the main phone systems available from most business telecoms providers.

Standard Landline Systems (PSTN)

  • Landlines are installed and maintained by a local or national phone company.
  • Also referred to as public switched business telephone networks (PSTNs), landlines run over copper wiring.
  • Best suited for large corporations which can afford to have their own in-house telecoms staff to repair and service them when needed.

Pros:

  • Reliable
  • Familiar, so no training is required for staff on how to use them.
  • A good fallback system as it doesn’t require an internet connection to work

Cons:

  • Many providers are phasing out landlines so you may have trouble having a new one installed.
  • No advanced features

VoIP Phone Systems

  • VoIP systems use you existing internet connection to make calls over the internet.
  • Extensive and advanced features like call queues, hunt groups, email integration call recording, auto attendants and more.
  • Perfect for remote workers as the system works the same way on any device from anywhere in the world.
  • Best for small businesses looking for an affordable and feature-rich telecoms system or businesses with a lot of remote workers.

Pros:

  • Cheaper than landlines.
  • Easier to install (no wires!)

Cons:

  • Entirely reliant on consistent internet connection
  • More confusing and technical to use than a PSTN line (but still quick to learn)

On-Premises VoIP

  • All the hardware, including the PBX system, is housed on your premises.
  • You will pay a one-off fee for the required hardware and then monthly fees for SIP trunks which then allow you to make and receive calls.
  • Your staff will be responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the VoIP system.
  • Best for businesses with internal expertise and physical enough space for the on-site hardware.

Pros:

  • You have total control over the service
  • Lower ongoing costs
  • Avoids regulatory issues which may prevent some business sectors operating in the cloud.

Cons: 

  • Costly to set up
  • Requires internal expertise.

Cloud-Based VoIP Systems

  • When you host your VoIP system in the cloud, there is no physical hardware to manage. The clod host provides maintenance and upgrades for the VoIP system.
  • Cloud-hosted VoIP is extremely scalable with a business paying a per-user fee. Adding a new line is as simple as paying for one more user.

Pros: 

  • No hardware required on site.
  • Extremely scalable to any size of business.
  • Settings can be managed through a web interface from any device, anywhere in the world.

Cons:

  • You are at the mercy of your cloud services provider, if something goes wrong you have to wait for them to fix it.
  • Higher ongoing costs than on-premises VoIP systems.

Best suited for companies on a fixed budget looking to scale in the future. Companies that do not have IT experts on hand to operate their own hardware. Also well-suited to companies that want immediate access to advanced telecoms features or businesses with multiple locations who need all their premises to be connected on the same VoIP network.

Now you have a basic understanding of the differences between the various types of business phone systems it should be easier to choose between them. If you are still unsure which system is best for your business, call Carden Telecoms today and one of our business telecoms experts will help assess your current telecoms set-up, your future goals and which business telecoms system and package would be best for you.

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