Can I use a Unified Communication System in a Small Business?

By Jim Vassallo
Updated: February 08, 2011

Owners of small businesses across the country are looking for different methods to improve productivity across all departments of their companies. One option some companies turn to is replacing the phone system they currently use in the office with one that has the latest technology. The newest phone systems feature VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), which use Internet Protocols also known as IP addresses, and operate on the internet.

Small businesses can also increase productivity by switching to a unified communication system. So what can a unified communication system do for a small business? The answer is quite simple: by streamlining the use and management of various communication methods into one platform, a business can focus more time on getting business done. Businesses can access email from anywhere, setup conferences with ease, instant message between offices and locations leading to a more efficient workplace.

Benefits of Unified Communication for Small Businesses

Most small business owners perform as much research as possible prior to making a company-changing purchase these days. Small business owners looking to integrate all of their communication methods turn to unified communication systems for their offices. A unified communication system will integrate all of an office's communication methods into one interface. Those communication methods include the following:

  • Cell phone
  • Landline phone
  • Fax
  • Email
  • Instant messaging
  • Text messaging
  • Web conferencing
  • VoIP
  • Screen sharing
  • Voice Mail

When all of these communication methods are put into one interface, your employees will be able to find others and contact them quicker and without having to waste a lot of time making phone calls or writing emails. Another added benefit of these systems is that you can give the phone number to your office to a client, when the client calls that number, your office phone and cell phone will ring. This helps you miss fewer calls from clients, increasing productivity and profits all in one shot.

Call Transfer

A major feature of a unified communication system is the fact that a phone call can be transferred from one phone to another with little difficulty. For instance, you are out of the office but scheduled for a news conference at 1pm. You begin the conference on your cell phone while out of the office, then walk through your home's front door, where the call can be transferred to your home phone. Now say you leave your home, the call transfers back to your cell phone, and then you return to your office. As you enter your office, the call can transfer to your office phone with ease.

Call Forward

Another excellent feature of a unified communication system that benefits a small business today is the call forwarding feature. This feature will help you track down your boss or your co-worker for an important sales call when the two of you are not in the same place. The system will know the phone number where your boss or co-worker is located and will forward the call to their location. This feature saves you a ton of time calling various numbers trying to track down your boss or co-worker.

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