5 Questions for Evaluating VoIP Companies

Your business has decided that it is time to move your phone system to the cloud. And if you have started looking for a provider, you know that there are many options to choose from.

Options are good, but it can be difficult to see past the promotions and ads and know which provider offers the best VoIP phone service.

Evaluating VoIP Companies

To help you make the right choice for your business, we'll review 5 key questions for evaluating VoIP companies. These questions focus on key decision points, such as cost, scalability, and reliability.

What up-front costs should I expect?

If you've installed a new phone system or business application before, you know that you will always spend a little more money at the beginning to get the new infrastructure in place. With a VoIP phone system, those costs are usually minimal. You might need to purchase IP phones or a better Internet connection, but there is no hardware or install. Plus, you should not have to worry about maintenance in the future; your provider will handle that.

Simply put, a qualified VoIP company should be able to provide your business with a reliable, cloud-based phone system at an affordable rate.

Is this provider's VoIP solution scalable with my business?

As you evaluate VoIP companies, you will see that some providers offer service at pricing that just looks too good to be true. But, does that same pricing apply as you scale your business? In some cases, providers will try to bring new customers on board at a promotional price, and then charge standard rates going forward.

Before you commit to any contract, make sure that you understand what future pricing and rates will be. That way, you can properly budget for growth.

What are my disaster recovery options?

Disaster recovery is one of the biggest selling points of a VoIP phone system. Because they are hosted in the cloud, your phone service is not dependent on the condition of on-site hardware or equipment. Many VoIP companies say that their service is reliable by default because of this.

As you search for the right VoIP business phone system provider, be sure that you truly understand their reliability and uptime claims. A quality provider will have multiple data centers, redundant call routing options, and no single point of failure. Only then can you be sure that your business will never miss an important phone call.

Is the solution easy to use?

One of the key advantages of VoIP phone service is that it is self-service. You do not need to have a telco or IT expert on staff to operate or maintain your system.

The right VoIP provider for your business will offer an easy-to-use, web-based portal that allows you to make adjustments to your system on your time. There should be no need to wait for a customer service representative to make change to simple things like call forwarding rules.

What kind of support is available?

VoIP phone systems should allow your business to be self-sufficient and make changes to your communications needs without the help of a Customer Support representative. But what if you are not able to find the answers you need on a support website? The right VoIP phone service provider should have a knowledgeable support team that is available and ready to help at all times.

Before you sign on with a VoIP company, check to see what their support levels are. Some VoIP companies only offer phone support if you have a certain number of users, or are using their top tier of service. Make sure that your business will have access to live support if you need it.