See why your PBX is restricting your growth and how you can unleash the true potential of your business
Modern businesses need modern communications to thrive
Technology can – and should – improve business communications. For SMBs in particular, modern communications technology can enable you to:
Read this guide to understand how your phone system may be damaging your profitability and the benefits Cloud Communications can offer you.
See inside to discover:
Traditional phone systems are no longer a match for modern businesses
At the heart of business communications for decades, the Private Branch Exchange (PBX) was designed to enable office-based employees to communicate with each other and the outside world.
The traditional PBX model
How the system does and doesn’t work.
The great divide between phone and IT systems
Purchase – You buy the kit and install it in your office
Ongoing management – An employee has to manage it
Maintenance – You pay a third-party to maintain it
Upgrade – If you want more features, you pay for an upgrade
Outgrow it – If you outgrow it, you throw it away and buy a new one
Failures = Serious disruption – If you experience PBX failures, you experience serious business disruption
Traditional phone systems exist largely in isolation from IT systems: one was about making and receiving phone calls; the other was about digital communications and managing information. The fact that both were essentially about communications was ignored. Today’s Cloud Communications The worlds of telecoms and IT have converged to deliver seamless Cloud Communications.
All of which means that traditional PBX systems are now hindering, rather than helping, today’s digital businesses.
Communications are now a critical enabler of success
If your communications aren’t up to speed, your business will soon fall behind.
Effective, flexible, high-performance communications systems are now critical to every business.
Increasingly mobile and dispersed workforces rely on communications support.
Responding quickly to rapidly changing market conditions and new competitors requires effective communications.
Communications are essential for meeting rising customer service standard expectations.
Communications are the lifeblood of the new age of business collaboration with suppliers, partners and customers.
To repel threats from lower-cost competitors, communications are key in improving productivity.
The true costs of an outdated phone system
The direct costs you’re paying for an on-premise PBX:
The arguments in favour of replacing an out of date phone system have often focused on the direct costs, however the real costs to a business struggling on with an outdated phone system are much greater than the direct costs.
Many customers still prefer having a phone call when dealing with service issues, so if your phone system doesn’t deliver the experience they want, your customers could soon be someone else’s.
Given the extra expense of acquiring a new customer compared to retaining an existing one, losing customers is hugely damaging to profitability.
Customer service expectations continue to rise and, despite the Internet and mobile apps, many consumers still prefer a phone call – but they demand rapid responses and a seamless experience without having to repeat themselves.
If your PBX doesn’t connect your callers first time to the right person with access to the right information, you’re putting your customer loyalty and profitability at risk.
89% of business leaders believe that customer experience will be their primary basis for competition
75% of consumers think calling is most effective for a quick response – but 53% are irritated if they don’t speak to a real person immediately.
Rising customer service expectations are often judged by phone call experiences.
Every business is only as good as its workforce – and attracting then holding onto your best people are now partly determined by how supportive, flexible, agile and efficient your communications and IT systems are.
Losing or being unable to attract top quality employees damages your ability to be competitive, while high levels of employee churn increase costs.
The quality of your communications and IT systems can influence the quality of employee that you attract and retain.
Younger workers expect to be able to share information easily and instantly, seamlessly switching between communications methods such as voice, video and messaging.
Traditional phone systems can’t deliver the flexibility and functionality that both young and old employees now take for granted. If they can’t work the way they want, your best employees will leave.
75% of employees rank workplace flexibility as their most important benefit.
75% of the workforce will be made up by the Millennial generation (born between 1982 and 2003) by 2025.
You need to ensure that your communications systems meet the needs of all your workers.
Today’s workforces are increasingly dispersed, but they still need to communicate and collaborate effectively – wherever and whenever. If employees don’t have access to the communication and collaboration tools they need, their productivity is adversely impacted.
More and more businesses now have a mix of mobile workers, home workers and freelancers collaborating with office-based staff.
All your people need access to the same information and tools, and they all need to be in contact at any time, from any location.
Restricted access to the tools they need negatively impacts your people’s productivity – and lower productivity means lower profitability
Traditional PBX systems were designed for office-based personnel – not a flexible, mobile workforce – and can damage employee productivity.
Improving productivity is often the primary reason why firms replace a PBX with modern communications solutions
By 2020, over 70% of UK organisations will have adopted flexible working.
Improved productivity was the number 1 driver of Unified Communications adoption in a PwC survey of UK small to medium-sized businesses.
Traditional PBX systems were not designed for flexible working and can damage employee productivity.
Physical presence is no longer needed for selling into a new location or launching a new service – but if you’re hamstrung by out of date communications, you’ll struggle to access new opportunities.
In today’s markets, ideas can be copied very quickly and new competitors can emerge at any moment, so maximising every opportunity is critical to success.
Cloud Communications systems enable firms to establish a virtual presence in new geographies quickly and cheaply, so you can expand without investing in new offices or equipment.
Seizing new opportunities is often about quickly building the right alliances – across teams, companies, suppliers, partners and customers – and being able to collaborate easily and flexibly.
Traditional phone systems are designed around closed networks and fixed, physical locations – they can’t deliver the unrestricted agility you need to be more responsive, flexible and collaborative.
81% of executives believe that industry boundaries will dramatically blur as platforms reshape industries into interconnected ecosystems.
68% of UK small to medium-sized businesses report collaborating with each other by sharing skills, experiences and networks.
Today’s businesses need agility to seize new opportunities, but traditional phone systems restrict rather than enable agility.
Unlike Cloud Communications platforms – which feature built-in redundancy and support seamless working from any location – an on-premise phone system significantly increases your risk of a costly outage.
An outdated on-premise phone system puts your business at risk of a major IT or communications outage, which could result in lost sales, reduced productivity and damage to your reputation.
Adding in-site redundancy could as much as double your costs, and even that won’t help if your premises are unusable because of a major incident such as fire, flood or electrical outage.
If your system doesn’t provide the functionality that employees expect, they will source their own tools – increasing your risk of IT failures while leaving you more vulnerable to data breaches and compliance failures.
80%+ of IT and Line-of-Business Managers admit using non-approved applications in their jobs.
The lack of any redundancy for a PBX outage caused by natural disaster or human intervention puts businesses at risk of a major failure.
The IT resources of many non-enterprise businesses are both stretched and costly – focusing them on managing an ageing phone system is particularly wasteful.
Your scarce IT resources should be focusing on projects that add value to your business and support your growth, not tied up trying to maintain your outdated phone system.
Technology is now at the heart of much business innovation, so your IT staff should be exploring opportunities to enhance your services and help you operate more effectively. If their time is consumed with routine administration and support, their ability to add value is severely restricted.
With the average pay, excluding benefits, for an IT Operations Manager being £44,364 per year in the UK and $80,000 in the US1 , these are expensive resources to have tied up on routine administration
£44k – Average pay for an IT Operations Manager in the UK.
$80k – Average pay for an IT Operations Manager in the US.
Would you rather have your expensive IT resource focused on maintaining your PBX or on adding value to your business?
Traditional on-premise phone systems no longer match the needs of today’s modern businesses. We are now living in the age of Cloud Communications.
By freeing you from the constraints of a physical location and a fixed workforce, Cloud Communications enable you to expand your opportunities.
You can now integrate multiple communications and collaboration services into a single solution, enabling you to deliver the seamless experiences that your employees and your customers increasingly expect.
Enabling access to all the information and tools your employees need – anywhere and anytime – Cloud Communications can significantly improve your people’s productivity
By ensuring you’re always upgraded to the latest technology, Cloud Communications help you stay competitive and at the forefront of business communication developments.
Cloud Communications feature the built-in resilience and security you need to significantly reduce the risks of damaging downtime.
Because your service provider manages and maintains your Cloud Communications solution, you are free to focus on adding more value to your business
93% of employees felt productivity had been improved by their organisation adopting Unified Communications and collaboration tools.
Switching to Cloud Communications maximises your profitability and unleashes the true potential of your business.
The longer you shackle your Business with an outdated phone system, the more growth opportunities you’re missing out on.
© rhm telecommunications 2019