A smiling woman in a suit, sitting as a table in a conference room.

A SIP trunking provider can boost your organization’s business communications.

Maybe your business is doing great: Sales are up, costs are down, and everything’s moving in the right direction. However, you know digital technology is changing how companies interact with customers and how they get things done. You also know that meeting the increased expectations of consumers, as well as the productivity requirements of a digital business, means having the right tools — including your on-premises phone system. Sure, it’s done a good job over the years, but now you need a more unified communications system that can handle voice, data, and multimedia traffic.

Enter a SIP trunking provider. No, that’s not someone who sells bootlegged alcohol from the back of a car. SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) trunking is a technology that connects a legacy business phone system to the cloud, enabling businesses of all sizes to support their modern communications needs by cost-effectively leveraging the speed, mobility and scalability of the internet.

How It Works

A SIP trunk provides a virtual connection from a legacy business phone system to an internet telephony service provider (ITSP), allowing organizations to do things an older, on-premises phone system simply can’t, such as transmit data, text, multimedia files, and other forms of unified communications. SIP trunking liberates an organization from the limitations of its existing, on-premises business communications system without requiring an expensive capital investment in new hardware and ongoing maintenance costs.

There are a number of ways a SIP trunking provider can help your business. It will help your employees be more productive by giving them the modern, multichannel communications features they need, such as remote call control and web conferencing. These features can be essential in flexible work environments where an employee might be at a desk in the morning, on the road midday, and working from home in the afternoon. Further, employees may feel less frustrated and more likely to stick around if they no longer feel as if they’re working in today’s business world while using their parents’ communications technology.

By deploying features from the cloud, SIP trunking also ensures business continuity. In the event of a disaster or outage at the office, calls can be redirected and messages can be received and saved. Then there’s the cost-saving potential: Not only does using a SIP trunking provider help businesses avoid capital expenditures, but it can reduce overall total cost of ownership (TCO) because it eliminates the need to manage and maintain multiple voice and data hardware systems. This frees up IT staff to focus on other projects that benefit the business.

SIP trunking services’ “burstable” feature also delivers instant scalability when needed by allowing businesses to temporarily use more trunk channels than provisioned. And, the service can be interoperable with IP PBX manufacturers.

You don’t need to scrap your existing phone system in order to compete in the digital economy. By leveraging SIP trunking and its rich features, companies can make employees more productive and customers more satisfied, all while saving a ton of money.

To learn more about Vonage’s SIP trunking technology, speak to a Vonage Business consultant today.

About Chris Nerney

Chris Nerney is a technology writer who covers both enterprise and consumer technologies. He has written extensively on cloud computing, unified communications, enterprise collaboration, VoIP, mobile technology, big data and analytics, data centers, converged systems and space technology. His writing has appeared in Computerworld, CIO.com, Data-Informed, Revenue Cycle Insights, Network World, ITWorld and many other technology publications, including enterprise whitepapers. Chris lives in upstate New York with his wife and three children.

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Professional man looks at smartphone.

Your law firm can now become a virtual business and enjoy the benefits of a digital workplace.

Thanks in large part to digital technology, even the traditional legal field has changed to a more mobile and flexible workplace. It used to be that most, if not all, client phone calls took place in the law office or a conference room. But with the evolving nature of virtual business, most lawyers now have a long and likely amusing list of locations they’ve taken client calls — in the car at soccer practice, outside restaurants, or tucked beneath an awning to avoid the rain.

Why You Are Now a Mobile Workplace

Unsurprisingly, the main reason lawyers and staff can work from pretty much anywhere is that today’s business communications solutions make it possible. Without this technology, they would still be chained to a desk late at night instead of taking calls in the comfort of their home with their dogs lying at their feet. Yet technology alone wouldn’t prompt such a dramatic shift in the way attorneys work — there’s a business case for it, as well. Specifically, increased mobility and flexible workplaces help with:

  • Productivity. Research from Global Workplace Analytics reports that two-thirds of employers note increased productivity when employees work remotely. Recent studies of JD Edwards and American Express also indicate a 20 percent to 25 percent and 43 percent increase in productivity, respectively, when it comes to employees who work remotely.
  • Recruitment and retention. Top new lawyers can be challenging to recruit and even harder to keep. It’s no secret that most employees who like their work would love the option to work from home or on-the-go when they need to. Many firms are now using telecommuting to attract and retain the best associates and employees. Those that don’t offer flexibility in their working locations and hours may see top graduates, lawyers, and experienced staff make a break for other firms more open to different ways of working. They may even end up paying more to replace employees who head to another firm with a more flexible workplace.
  • Cost savings. For law firms, one of the biggest benefits of virtual business is cost savings. By having a virtual workforce or mostly remote firm, you save significantly on office space. This savings can be pocketed by the partners or passed on to clients — or a combination of both. Even firms that only allow remote working as a part-time option can see cost savings because less office space is needed. This setup also allows more options for a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy. When employees use personally owned devices, it reduces costs and provides more convenience to workers. Instead of running around with two phones bulging in their pants pockets, they can toggle between their business and personal number on their own device and take important client calls right after they post an Instagram of their afternoon coffee.

Technology That Sets You Free

Yes, it takes technology to successfully evolve into a firm that embraces mobility. But you have to have the right technology and use it in a way that helps your firm collaborate and stay connected outside the office walls.

Consider three important types of technology to embrace when going mobile:

  • Mobile devices: Of course it starts with a phone. You can’t have a mobile workplace without a unified communications platform that combines voice and cloud technology to let your employees and partners work across multiple devices. All of these devices can have the same phone number, so your employees will receive calls regardless of whether they’re sitting in a cafe or on the steps of the courthouse with their phone in one hand and a half-eaten sandwich in the other.
  • Cloud-based technology: With cloud-based software, tools no longer have to be installed on the device you’re working on. This means that employees can have the same experience that they have in the office on whatever device or computer they want. You can also manage your hardware virtually and back up your servers. But, most importantly, you can use the power of the cloud to provide your customers with additional services and products, such as apps and portals, that will increase revenue. For example, if your firm uses Clio®, you can integrate this customer relationship management (CRM) tool into your business phone system, saving significant time by automatically tracking call times, taking notes, and logging all incoming and outgoing calls for any given client, whether those connections are made from a desk pone in the office, on a mobile phone at the courthouse or simply on-the-go.
  • Collaboration tools: One concern about telecommuting is the loss of face-to-face time in meetings and work sessions, but with collaboration tools such as project management software, chat software, video conferencing and web meetings, your team can work almost as if everyone is in the same room. Cloud communications offers all of these features — and more — providing the flexibility and mobility needed to enhance collaboration, increase productivity, and, ultimately, grow your business. The bad news is telecommuters will have to bring their own donuts — but hey, at least they won’t get stuck with the last powdered jelly.

Virtual business may seem like a big shift for your firm, but technology can make it easy and relatively painless. It’s time to start taking steps toward evolving to a mobile workplace — your employees will thank you for it.

Contact a Vonage® Business consultant to take the next step in helping your employees telecommute.

About Jennifer Goforth Gregory

Jennifer Goforth Gregory is a technology freelance writer specializing in B2B and telecommunications topics. She has written for national brands including IBM, Samsung, ADTRAN, Adobe, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Verizon, Costco and American Express. One of her superpowers is being able to translate technical speak from the experts that make products work into language everyone else can understand. Jennifer has a master’s degree in technical communication and lives in North Carolina with her husband and two kids.

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