What Features Are Available in New IP PBX Phone Systems?

By Jelani Harper
Updated: January 27, 2011

There are a number of features available in new Internet Protocol (IP) PBX (Private Branch Exchange) phone systems that will enhance both worker productivity and customer satisfaction. By cleverly combining internet access and computer adaptability with the latest in telecommunication capability for messaging and routing calls, users are assured of making and staying in contact with much needed employees, superiors, and an ever-increasingly global customer base.

Basic Features

Guided by any number of automatic attendants which receive the initial calls, a PBX system can direct calls, messages, and faxes to multiple destinations including cell phones, laptops, and landlines--simultaneously, if need be. The Find/Follow feature allows calls to be routed to varying locations until someone is reached, while auto attendants can place calls to virtual departments and dial-by-name directories. Call centers can be set up and designated to answer calls regarding specific topics, while the useful call queuing feature prioritizes the order of individual extensions that calls will be routed to.

The password protected voicemail features are just as versatile, including options for accessing voicemail through web interface, sending voicemails to e-mails, and sending messages to groups. Employees can even have multiple voicemail accounts, if needed, while a unified messaging feature allows voicemails, e-mails and faxes to go to one account. Other capabilities includes making and receiving of calls via computers, and there are a number of helpful remote office features that utilize alternate locations such as satellite offices, which function in support of primary branches. Conveniently, phones in the IP PBX system can be moved and plugged into different locations while still maintaining their initial features and phone number.

Virtual Numbers & e911

IP PBX phone systems also offer customers toll-free numbers to reach businesses. The systems allow for unlimited calling, which includes local access, virtual numbers, international virtual numbers, and directory assistance. In addition to analog phone features such as caller ID, call waiting and conference calls, an IP PBX offers call logs (which can be downloaded and printed out on PC’s,) as well as “do not disturb” features to ensure privacy. 911 calls made from a PBX automatically deliver the address of the locations the call was made from, while hosted PBX servers can direct calls to alternate sites in the event of disasters.

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