Posted on November 21, 2014 by Dan Quick
Ever wonder what it would be like if you could bypass the seemingly endless list of extensions on most telephone systems and get directed right to exactly the person you need to speak with? So do your customers. With an advanced Direct Number Identification System, or DNIS, your callers are treated to a much sleeker and quicker on-hold experience. VirtualPBX has a full library of toll-free, local, and international numbers for you to choose from to generate dedicated phone numbers for anything from a promotion or product line to an exclusive VIP line that, when dialed, automatically reaches the members of your team who are ready for those specific callers. Plus, using DNIS numbers also sorts through otherwise unorganized call data so that your team can learn and grow to create stronger, more profitably customer experiences using a litany of call reports and data. All of this while keeping you free to pay attention to the things that really matter. Check out this handy infographic to get a better understanding, and get in touch with one of our DNIS experts if your business could benefit from an improved call-waiting experience.
Pennywise and Pound Foolish
Posted on November 18, 2014 by Dan Quick
You may have heard this one before. It makes sense, though, we shouldn’t sacrifice our long-term opportunities at the expense of saving a few extra bucks here or there on things that we ultimately need to invest in.
Sometimes doing this means shelling-out for that killer software or computer that is outside of your typical onboarding package to make sure your new hire can help elevate your game. Or, maybe you’re just starting out and you are putting some of your salary dollars right back into your business. No matter what the case may be, the simple fact is that there will always be expenses that will come back as revenue even if it’s not as soon as we may prefer. Sometimes, though, our investments are immediately calculable.
Just like switching to a hybrid or electric vehicle will result in immediately realized gains at the gas pump, and retrofitting facilities with water-saving devices or LED lighting will positively impact utility bills, there will always be opportunities to gain from an appropriate amount of prudent investment.
Enlisting the service of an off-site telephone failover system like PBX Parachute allows you to mirror your existing system as we discussed recently. What you may not have known, however, is how you can realize gains from employing PBX Parachute even without a system failure or emergency.
There comes a point for every business where you can no longer divert valuable time and energy into certain tasks, and so finding economical ways to outsource them becomes paramount. Kara Taylor, VP of IS at Qualstar Credit Union in Redmond, Washington, was in such a position when her company of about 100 employees enlisted PBX Parachute to cover their nearly 100,000 inbound calls a month. Her savings were immediately realized. “The solution allowed us to greatly reduce our communications disaster recovery time from potentially hours to less than minutes and in so doing, virtually removed IS from managing another system in a recovery situation.”
You can read the entire case study from Qualstar and learn more about PBX Parachute from one of our experts in San Jose, but one thing you can’t do, however, is let your Information Security team off of the hook without PBX Parachute.
For Data Security, Faxing is King
Posted on November 14, 2014 by Dan Quick
No, this is not a headline from a breaking news story straight out of the mid 1960’s, we’re serious. The convenience and speed of subsequent telecommunication methods have definitely contributed to the gradual decline in fax machine usage. Obviously, when you can send and receive emails from the palm of your hand, the notion of walking over to the copier/scanner/fax/vacuum/espresso machine to send a fax is a little daunting. Don’t worry. This happened to us all with the TV remote control, too.
Conducting business has become more accessible and adaptable thanks to the introduction of everything from cellular data and wireless internet to email and social networks. Our basic suite of business tools have increasingly accelerated in function, feature, and feasibility but have left the once undisputed king of document transfer, the fax machine, untouched, right? Wrong.
Because of its unparalleled data security, faxing is still the only, non-physical document delivery method permissible by organizations like The American Bar Association and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. These entities and countless others that deal with privacy concerns and confidentiality rely exclusively on faxes on a daily basis. The reason why governments, health organizations, and even financial institutions are adamant that they keep faxes for document transfer is that faxing remains the most secure transmission option available short of personally handing off paperwork.
T.30 protocol is the pivotal technology upon which faxing is based and, ultimately, it also provides the foundation for faxing’s inherent security. As a point-to-point communications system, should any malicious attempt to alter or intercept the fax be made, the transmission will fail, as it cannot be routed to a third location. This is why faxed contracts retain the same legally binding status as hand-signed ones but emailed documents, which are easily intercepted, do not. The unparalleled security of faxes plus their worldwide ubiquity, even in developing countries, is what makes the fax a critical communication vehicle for any enterprise.
Faxing’s important role in business is why forward thinking companies like VirtualPBX have devised ways to bring faxing up to modern expectations for convenience while maintaining all of the security that keeps faxing relevant. Now with Online Faxing, subscribes to VirtualPBX Business Phone Plans can send and receive faxes from a desktop computer over their existing cloud-based phone line. Faxes on this system do not require additional cumbersome and costly machinery to send and receive faxes, saving space, money, and energy. Faxes can even be sent and received over a VoIP telephone line from VirtualPBX, so businesses no longer need multiple telephone numbers to fax.
Elevating the safety of faxing to the standards of flexibility and mobility that modernity has conditioned businesses to expect from their technology is only one example of the solutions that VirtualPBX is know for. Get Online Faxing for your business to keep your data secure and to share documents with confidence. Faxing, long reign the King.
This is a Test, This is Only a Test
Posted on November 11, 2014 by Dan Quick
Should this have been a real emergency we probably wouldn’t be sitting around chatting, would we? We all recognize this phrase, and for some of us, it may not represent much more than a slight nuisance during our favorite TV or radio programs. The truth is that these periodic tests of the Emergency Alert System (formerly the Emergency Broadcast System) are designed to maintain a nationwide communications network should there ever be the need for delivering critical messages on a massive scale. While that’s a rather bleak notion, it’s also emblematic of something that is equally critical for businesses to consider implementing.
In a recent blog, we stressed the importance of designing, testing, and adopting a Business Continuity Plan and many of our subscribers have since begun that process. That’s a fantastic way to keep your doors open for business during an emergency. Furthermore, it prevents customers and prospects from guessing whether or not you are available or, worse yet, moving on to a competitor. It’s great that you can set your business up for success under any circumstance, but what about the wellbeing of your employees? How do you address their needs if their safety is in question? PBX Parachute can provide access to messages for your workforce in addition to keeping the lines of communication open to the public.
With a few very simple steps, you can prerecord any type of general emergency instructions for your employees and program them to be available on a special hotline as soon as the automatic failover system springs into action. That hotline number can be shared with your employees beforehand but it becomes available when the failover system is activated, thus eliminating the possibility for false alarms. And seeing as how PBX Parachute replicates your primary phone system and can also forward calls to extensions, your employees can both access the emergency hotline and get their inbound calls from a remote location away from any danger. Furthermore, from the convenience of your vConsole, you can also record situation-specific instructions and update the message in real time, making sure your team always has the most important and time-critical information right when they need it.
You’ve put too much into developing your team to put them in harm’s way. Get in touch with our business continuity experts to see how PBX Parachute can help you protect your most important investment- your employees. PBX Parachute helps you do that, test pattern not required.
We’ve Got your Back – VirtualPBX Business Phone Protection
Posted on November 7, 2014 by Dan Quick
You know that one person in your circle of friends who everyone can always rely on? You know, the gal who will always be there to help you move, the guy who never hesitates to be designated driver, the person who is just rock-solid reliable? The point is that we have occasion to encounter people along the way that can always be trusted to be there in the clutch. Heck, maybe you’re that person, even. If so, you’d know how great it feels to lend a helping hand. We do, too.
While we can’t exactly commit to helping you move, and seeing as how we keep thousands of telephone numbers up and running 24 hours a day, we might not be the best option to hitch a ride in the middle of the night. However, we are there for you whenever you have an emergency at work.
If you subscribe to any of our Office or Anywhere Plans, you always have the peace of mind knowing that your business lines will be up and running no matter what unfolds. Weather, political, social, animal, vegetable or mineral- no matter what type of emergency comes knocking to your doorstep, your customers will never know the difference unless you want them to. That’s right, with a cloud-based telephone service from VirtualPBX, whenever disaster strikes, your telephone service continues as if nothing has happened and customers are sent to voicemail, or you can quickly change the inbound greeting to reflect any special instructions or updates should you require them. All of this can be managed in real time and wherever you can get online to your vConsole, your complete VirtualPBX phone system control panel. Through the vConsle you can also make lightening-fast changes to call routing by diverting traffic instantly to your cellphone or softphone. This intuitive platform can also be programed to intelligently cascade down a list of phones as you provide them, ex- desk phone, soft phone, mobile, etc.
Don’t have VirtualPBX telephone service yet? No problem, we’ve got you covered, too. With PBX Parachute, you can benefit from all of the same security and peace of mind as our complete phone service subscribers. Very much in the same way as we do with our Office and Anywhere Plans, with PBX Parachute we replicate your entire phone system so that, should you get hit with a system-downing emergency at your facility, PBX Parachute will deploy instantly after your primary system goes down. Also, you can prepare custom messages for inbound callers and information hotlines for your employees. This way you can immediately share critical information to the people who matter to you most, as soon as it is necessary.
No matter where you are or how you get your business phone service, VirtualPBX can be your wingman, your knight in shining armor, your go-to. What can we say? It just feels good knowing that people can rely on us. Reach out to one of our VoIP experts and see how we can help your business stay in the game, no matter what.