Concerns when Implementing a Business VoIP System

By Stan Baldwin
Updated: February 03, 2011

Your company has decided it's time to add a VoIP phone system to the local area network. Since access to the traditional PSTN will still be needed an ATA will connect your company to that system. A gateway/firewall will connect your VoIP users to the internet. Your telephone and network people (staff or vendors) have drawn up a diagram showing where the people are, their phone numbers, the location of their network connections and the nearest available power outlets. Connections to special devices such as a FAX have been noted and relationships, such as who's phone forwards to a colleague or assistant, are also in the notes. That's great, because the number one criteria for bringing a successful a new VoIP system on line is getting organized before you start and staying organized through the implementation.

Unless your staff has the expertise and the extra capacity to do the install, configuration and testing themselves, you'll be working with at least one vendor, and possibly many vendors. Their accumulated experience can save big money and larger headaches. However, chose your partners in this endeavor with a careful eye to their longevity in the business, range of skills and past projects. Referrals and references are worth the time invested.

Some of the concerns you and your suppliers will address:

  1. Test and assess the proposed network capacity. Since quality of service is important to the performance of the new phone system, see if what you have in mind will be adequate.
  2. And while you're at it, this might be a good time to consider where quality of service monitoring should be done. Those routers, bridges or gateways will also be configured to best handle the types of data traffic expected.
  3. Are there any types of equipment with “special needs”? If so, is the expertise required to include them in the VoIP system available? Or must they be replaced?
  4. What's the plan when power fails? All this networking equipment requires both cabling and a wall plug. A large, green, rarely used generator in the basement is only one solution.
  5. What about leaving the hardwired connections in place? Maybe even incorporate them into your backup plans to keep the business in business when power fails.
  6. Consider NOT including all the wonderful new functionality possibilities at initial roll-out. Incremental enhancement reduces business risk, stress on the users and demands on the support staff.
  7. You already know it, so just a reminder: the Details Matter. Make sure everything you buy is compatible. Consider upgrade paths. Anticipate new or increased demands on the system. Think of things that could go wrong.

Though it could be daunting, you are embarking on a project which will bring new capabilities to your organization, offer greater functionality at a lower cost and bring new capabilities your staff can use to increase volume and profits.

Featured Research
  • 8 Ways to Get More From Your VoIP System

    Many businesses adopt VoIP to take advantage of the cost savings without spending enough time reviewing the features and benefits made available by different solutions. If this is true for your business, there’s a good chance you could be getting more from your VoIP system in the form of even lower costs or improved employee productivity. You may even find that your current software offers features that you aren’t taking advantage of! more

  • 7 Ways the Wrong Phone System Can Haunt Your Business

    The wrong phone system could be haunting your business - and we’re talking about problems more serious than ghosts and ghouls. From increased costs to issues with scaling, we’ve identified seven important ways that a less than ideal phone system could be holding you back. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference this can make to your bottom line too. more

  • Ditch Your Fax Servers

    An in-house fax server gives an IT department centralized management and monitoring over the entire enterprise's faxing. This can help your company track usage and better maintain records for auditing and record keeping. However, there are serious drawbacks that come with utilizing an in-house fax server solution and these range from security to cost-prohibitive pricing. more

  • The IT Manager's Survival Guide

    As an IT manager, maintaining physical fax servers and infrastructure is not a high priority. However, fax capability remains a business need simply because chances are your industry is dependent on its security. What if there was a way to reduce the amount of time spent handling fax complaints and maintaining physical servers? And this way took into account security, cost savings, and freed up your IT resources. Would you be interested? more

  • VoIP: Your New Secret Weapon for a Strong Year End

    As the end of 2017 nears, you may be feeling pressure to make sure you close the year out strong.If you’ve been sitting on the fence regarding VoIP, this may be the perfect time to switch. VoIP options had never been better or more full-featured than they are now, and it may be just the thing your business needs to see a productivity and profitability boost. more