Reviewing Business Phone Systems

By Neil Zawacki
Updated: April 18, 2011

The number of business phone systems on the market has greatly increased over the last few years. This can make choosing a new phone system a difficult task, since almost all of them claim to be the best. You can simplify this process by taking a strategic approach to looking at different phones.

Determine the Basic Needs of the Company

You should ask yourself:

  • How many phone extensions do you require?
  • Do you need voice mail for your employees?
  • Are you going to want a mobile option?
  • Will there be a live operator to direct calls?
  • How much phone traffic do you expect?

The next step of the phone system review is to seek out different manufacturers and see what they have available. You can accomplish this through a standard internet search with basic terms like ‘business phones’ and ‘business phone vendors’. The information that you’re looking for can generally be found on the product feature page of the company’s website.

Comparing Phone System Vendors

The cost of the business phone system is obviously important. You will see competing prices for different products, along with potential upgrades. The lowest price isn’t necessarily the best deal here – it can sometimes be worth it to spend a little extra and get a higher quality phone. If a phone is outside your price range, though, you should probably move on to the next.

You may also want to see if their phone systems have any special features that can benefit your company. This can include conference calls, call recording, virtual phone numbers, call forwarding, and route-to-fax capabilities. Many modern phone systems can also provide videoconferencing between remote locations and automated outbound dialing for sales and marketing campaigns.

Another factor is whether the phone system allows the opportunity for growth. You might only need a small number of phone lines now, but that can quickly change if your business expands. Many companies will therefore want to be able to add new users to the system and switch phone numbers around as people leave or move to different departments.

Dependability of Phone Systems

Your phone system review should also take a good look at the dependability of the manufacturer. If the company has been around for at least three years, it’s generally a good sign. If they require a mandatory service contract in order to use their product, it’s generally not. You should also see if they are willing to provide references and point you to past or current customers.

Once you’ve narrowed down the phone systems to a few choices, you should call up the vendors and ask for a product demonstration. This may take some time, but it will also provide some of the most objective data of the phone system review since you will be able to compare how the different models work and decide which one of them is right for your business.

Featured Research
  • 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

  • 2017 Phone Systems Checklist

    As you are well aware, we are living in an age of extreme technological growth. With this, an understatement might be that phone systems have changed a bit over the last decade. If you are in the market for a new phone system, it is absolutely essential for you to have knowledge of this vast sector and just what exactly you need in order to have your business succeed. more

  • VoIP vs. VoPI

    Are you searching around for an upgrade to your current phone system? If so, you've mostly likely heard of VoIP, but do you know about VoPI? Lately, there has been a lot of conversation around what the difference is between the two systems. Most of this conversation centers around security, as both of these systems, operate over the internet versus the traditional phone lines. more

  • Why You Need Mobile VoIP

    Mobile VoIP is growing at an exponential rate and can help your company reduce costs, improve communications, and drive increased employee satisfaction and loyalty. If what was just mentioned above sounds like it would be good for your business (it is), download our latest guide Why You Need Mobile VoIP to learn even more reasons why you need to make the switch today! more

  • How You Can Stop VoIP Eavesdropping

    In today’s modern technological world we face cyber threats on an almost daily basis. This rings true when switching phone systems to VoIP. While there are many benefits to making the switch, there MUST be precautions taken to ensure that your new phone system is safe and secure. more