Setting up an office phone system is something every business owner will need to do at some point. Whether you’re a startup company needing a brand new system or a well-established business wanting to make a change, deciding on which phone system to choose and learning how to set it all up can seem like a daunting task.
But, worry not as we’re here to help! In this guide, we’ll teach you how to choose the right phone system for your needs and how to set it all up in just a few simple steps. You may be surprised at just how easy it really is
1. Choose the Right Phone System for your Office
There are various different types of phone systems available to choose from and learning about each one can definitely be a minefield. However, we believe that the best phone system options for businesses are:
Multi-Line Phone System
For small businesses and startups, a multi-line phone system may work best to begin with. This system can handle multiple calls at once and all route to a main system that can transfer calls to different lines. This is the more traditional phone system available which is connected through copper wiring and is great if you’re just starting out. While it won’t offer as many features as other systems, it’s easy to operate and reliable. You won’t be let down with a multi-line phone system.
VoIP Phone System
On the other hand, a VoIP phone system uses a broadband internet connection rather than the traditional wiring. This makes calls on the system fast and reliable no matter where in the world you or your clients are. It’s perfect for larger businesses that operate on a global scale. With this system, you’ll also benefit from a lot of handy features such as being able to connect different business software to your phone lines and directing calls to any telephone you want, which also includes mobile devices.
2. Choose your Phone Service Provider
Once you’ve settled on a system, the next step is to choose a service provider. Ideally, you want to choose a company that can offer and handle all of your business phone needs in one place. From adding multiple phones and offering business mobiles to being able to have 3-way calls and the option to include broadband too. You’ll need to list all of your requirements and match them up to each provider available.
3. Choose your Business Phone Number
If you’re a new business you’ll need to decide on a business phone number. Established businesses simply changing their phone system should be able to transfer their old number to the new system. When it comes to choosing a phone number, you’ll want something that’s free for customers and easy to remember. Choosing a series of simple and repetitive numbers is one option or you could choose a number that’s related to your business in some way. We’d also recommend opting for a number with your local area code if that’s your businesses target audience.
4. Choose and Setup your Business Phone Features
Now that you’ve chosen your system, provider and phone number the fun can really begin! With your system/provider choose all of the business options you would like and feel would be useful to your business. These can include:
- Customisable greeting – Set up an automated customisable greeting to make your business sound more professional. This feature also allows customers to press a certain number to get through to the department or person they need to speak to rather than talking to several different people to get to where they need.
- Voicemail greeting – Make sure you set up a voicemail greeting too, encouraging customers to leave a message if you can’t get to the phone. With some systems, you’re also able to have your voicemails transcribed through text or email so you can quickly scan what the message was about without needing to listen to the whole thing.
- Hold music – Adding custom hold music and messages is a great way to entertain your customers during busy periods. This feature is a must-have for larger businesses as the messages can encourage them to stay on the line. You can also include a countdown for where they are in the queue and a time estimate.
- Set business hours – Setting up the office phone business hours is an essential task that will save you a lot of grief. If the office is closed for a holiday or staff on their lunch breaks or out of the office on annual leave, an automated feature will be able to either forward the call elsewhere or send out a message explaining to the customer that the phones can’t be answered at that time.
- Multiple extensions – If you have a large business then including multiple extensions will be essential as they allow customers, clients and other departments to find who they need by just pressing a number. These extensions can be assigned to each individual or just the department head as an efficient way to contact the team.
If you’re struggling to choose the right system or the perfect provider, contact our team at Officeology who can help get you set up with a cost-effective, bespoke phone and broadband solution.