In today’s virtual world, the question of what the best voice solutions are for multi-site businesses is one that comes up often.
When it comes to multi-site business operations, there is no “one size fits all” solution. Some businesses are completely virtual, while others operate a corporate headquarters with several branch offices. There are many variances of multi-site businesses, but there are few common elements businesses should consider as they examine voice solutions.
The Business Phone System
When it comes to business phone systems in today’s corporate space, there are two options from which companies typically choose:
- Premise-based system
- Cloud-based (hosted) system
In our, “Business phone Systems – Premise or Hosted,” blog post, we discuss the benefits of each in detail. The primary difference between them is that one lives at your company’s site, and the other lives in the cloud.
Supporting multiple sites can be accomplished with each system option, but the cloud/hosted option is the one we typically recommend to our multi-site clients due to the following factors:
- A single hosted PBX system can house all of the users from every site, providing centralized management for all sites.
- There’s a ton of flexibility for routing calls within the hosted system. If a branch office is down due to a local power outage, calls can quickly and easily be rerouted to any other location, line, group, or extension.
- Telecom cost management and budgeting is much easier to manage with a single hosted system as branch offices can be set up and taken down quickly.
Usage and Carrier Considerations
Perhaps the greatest advantage of using a cloud-based system for multi-site locations is the flexibility in sourcing and managing carrier services.
For example, a business choosing to use a premise-based system might likely have a fiber or PRI line connected into the system. That trunk will allow 15-23 calls to be handled simultaneously. That solution for the corporate headquarters as a standalone location might be perfectly adequate.
When branch offices are added to the equation, the premise solution suddenly becomes very expensive. If the branch offices are to be part of the main system, dedicated lines would need to be run from the branch location to the main headquarters. While it might not seem like that big of a deal, it is. Each line could cost several hundred dollars per month. Additionally, that main trunk into the phone system now has to manage more concurrent calls from branch office employees.
When businesses choose the cloud over the premise-based option, those issues and costs are virtually eliminated.
Depending on the size and number of employees, each branch office can utilize their own local internet connection to connect to the hosted system. For small offices with only a few employees, a broadband connection is often sufficient to support the calls as well as the internet access requirements. For larger branch offices, dedicated circuits like fiber or Metro Ethernet may be a better solution. Unlike the premise-based scenario, though, the dedicated connections will be less costly because they’re connection to their local provider rather than a system which could be several states away.
Partner with a Telecom Company Who Knows
Many telecom companies aren’t equipped with the knowledge or resources to enable quality multi-site voice connectivity. Modern Telecom has both the knowledge and experience to ensure your multi-site telecom needs are met with the right solution.