PBX Reviews

How to effectively compare PBX systems

Updated: January 07, 2011

Choosing the right PBX system is a tricky business and it requires thorough and careful research. In the past the best sources for information might have been analyst reports or technology and telephony publications but all of that information has moved online. The single best way to review all the options is to thoroughly explore all the available information online from each of the forty or more different established vendors in the PBX space (and that is excluding an additional 50 or more vendors that are too small or too new to be considered reliable). But that is huge task and one that very few businesses can spare the time for. Instead, high quality independent online publications like CompareBusinessProducts now provide reviews and comparisons that are just as thorough and usually much more straightforward that the big analyst companies and at the same time gather the most important information from those key vendors into one place.

How to go about a review of PBX systems

The right way to do a quick but effective evaluation of which PBX system is right for you is to follow this simple checklist.

First, clearly establish your requirements. Look at the size of your organization and your telephone usage. A heavy usage organization like a sales team or a call center is going to have substantially higher requirements than an analytical organization that has few external needs. You also need to look at the number of locations. The needs of a spread-out retail organization are different than those of a medium-sixed business located in a single central office.

Part of knowing exactly what you need is knowing what the current features set and capabilities of PBX systems are and how to evaluate or review them. Take a look at our Phone System and PBX Buyers Guide for information about features and capabilities that are applicable to businesses of any kind.

Once you have the criteria that interest you established, you need to start looking at and comparing different vendor capabilities - reviewing PBX and phone systems to see how they match your needs. The goal is to create a shortlist of anywhere from one to four products or vendors that you can then evaluate thoroughly by contacting them and getting a demo or a trial. For the single most comprehensive table of PBX systems with a comprehensive list of features, see our CompareBusinessProducts Comparison Guide. Unlike most comparison tables it is in a convenient Excel format that lets you filter and search easily as well as add new criteria and comments of your own. You can get the Comparison Guide here.

Do your research thoroughly, but take advantage of the shortcuts and preliminary research we have already done for you. Then carefully look at your shortlist. Remember to get input from the future users of your new phone system. A common mistake is to forget the phone itself - whether it is a deskset or a headset, people have strong preferences and the wrong phone can make an otherwise great system unusable.

Featured Research
  • 8 Ways Business Travelers Can Save with VoIP

    Do you or any part of your workforce travel for work, or even telecommute? If that answer is yes, then you should be utilizing mobile VoIP. With VoIP, businesses have been found to save as much as 40% on local calls and a whopping 90% on international calling expenses. more

  • Phone System Showdown

    When it comes time to select your new phone system, one of the biggest questions that you will face is whether to go with the hot, new VoIP system or the steady and secure PBX network. There are pros and cons to each of these phone systems, and before making any purchase we highly suggest that you take the time to download and read our latest guide: Phone System Showdown: VoIP vs. PBX. more

  • Signals Your Company is Ready For Unified Communications

    Efficient and effective business collaboration is essential to company success and as you grow your business, you'll discover all the different communication methods that you NEED to stay connected with partners and customers. Implementing a Unified Communications (UC) system can save your company upwards of $920,000 a year due to increased efficiency amongst company employees. more

  • Phone System Implementation Expectations

    Providers would have you believe that implementing a new phone system is as easy as counting to three. However, while the process may not be difficult, there are steps that need to be taken to ensure that your new VoIP system is installed and implemented smoothly. Luckily, the challenges associated with upgrading your system tend to be fairly predictable. Most businesses run into the same set of problems that many others have faced before them, meaning avoiding or overcoming them is as easy as preparing ahead of time. more

  • Your Phone System and Your Bottom Line

    Businesses have been using phones to drive increases to their bottom lines for almost a century now. Telephony, much like the rest of the business world, has seen drastic changes with the increase in technological advancement. Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), has enabled companies to connect with consumers at levels that have been seen as unheard of before. And trust us when we say this, it is doing wonders for the bottom line. more