Why Resellers Offer Better Voice Service

If you think working from home is as simple as letting the workers use their home phone line to make calls or work from their mobile phones, you’re in for a rude awakening. In light of the Coronavirus, many small businesses are sending their people home to work, figuring that a phone line is a phone line, and calls can just be forwarded to the worker’s home or mobile numbers.

 

Put aside the issue of an employee’s private numbers being revealed so they can receive return calls or them blocking the number when they make outgoing calls. Those both are call related issues tied to privacy as well as call completion, making them each an impediment to getting work done. And if you think mobile phones are the answer, think again. 

Mobile phones are fraught with a second issue. The “Totem Pole Effect” where your cell connection isn’t static, and as the next new device connects to the tower a phone is connected to, each phone that connected earlier sees the connectivity level drop. Already, we and other cloud providers are finding that some of the cellular networks are finding that they are oversaturated, making it impossible for calls to be completed. Here again, a VoIP connection over fiber, cable or suitable DSL line is the best option, and where our White Label VoIP Assessment Tool comes in handy.

But there’s more. A quick review of calling features and functionality from AT&T shows that home phone service pales in comparison to what cloud-based VoIP providers, like the many SkySwicth Resellers, offer. Services from cable companies, like Cox Communications, offer businesses a package that is based mainly on Broadsoft’s platform. Known as IP Centrix, their customers fare a bit better in the features mix, but the “available for an additional cost” options quickly add up, making it bad business for small businesses.

 

Cloud Voice providers offer better value, a more robust feature set, lower costs, and access to local resellers who can provide a level of support the large cable companies and legacy telcos can’t in your time of need. Not only can they turn up service virtually anywhere, within minutes, they can also help with at home networking and the needed devices like phones, headsets, speakerphones, and more, supplying those in days, not weeks or months.

 

If your business relies on your people making or taking calls, a local reseller may be your best solution today, tomorrow, and for the future.

How to Keep Working From Home In the Time of Need

The COVID-19 Coronavirus has us all, each day, seeing more events canceled, more companies asking their employees to work from home, and a greater need for our resellers and their customers to know what they need to do to effectively work from home.

Since SkySwitch’s inception, our company has already had a remote and distributed workforce. We have instituted a work from home program, and given our cloud-native approach, we’re well prepared for our staff to work remotely. Our team is here to help you and your customers take advantage of remote work, just as we do.

To work from home, there are a few steps that make life easier for your staff and your customers.

 

1. Assess their home network using our VoIP Network Assessment tool. Our free VoIP Network Assessment tool makes it fast and easy to determine if a customer’s home office has the right stuff from the start. If their routers, access points and WiFi gear aren’t good enough, or if their internet connection from their broadband provider isn’t fast or stable enough, you’ll know from the start and can take action to change the gear or upgrade their broadband if it’s available.

The Yealink SIP-T57W Phone, available in the online SkySwitch Store


2. Have your support team ready to help.
Set up a VLAN on their routers. A VLAN allows the VoIP traffic to be prioritized over other traffic in the home if properly configured.

 

3. Make calls using our Reach UC client or a desk phone. Reach UC is available for download for iOS and Android devices for easy business calls on your cell. Desk phones can be taken from the office and connected to a home network. If you need new desk phones, the SkySwitch Store has worked with many of our suppliers to secure lower-cost pricing — including lower prices on Power Over Ethernet adapters, so the phones can be connected by an ethernet cable directly to a router or switch. Other phones we have lowered prices on are WiFi capable, so between a hard-wired or wireless connection, calls can continue to happen uninterrupted.

4. Stay connected with your team. SkySwitch also offers Find Me/Follow Me functionality via the user portal. With that enabled, incoming calls can be directed to ring multiple devices, like your home phone, mobile phone and more, all at once. When forwarding calls to another number with voicemail, like your mobile phone has, consider enabling the feature to “enable confirmation for offnet numbers” so that the PBX can keep control of the call and forward to another destination if required.

5. Host interactive web and video conferences with Meeting Manager. We are, for the near term, waiving the cost of riders to resellers for our Meeting Manager service.

 

6. Setup E911 phone requirements. Once your staff or your customers’ staff have started to work from home, you should have them set up their extension’s physical address. As always, setup and configuration for E911 is a service SkySwitch offers at no charge to our resellers. For more information on setup, management and testing, read our Knowledge Base docs.

7. Communicate freely at home. Working from home doesn’t mean the business has to stop. As a company, we make use of speakerphones in our office and home environments, and just as with phones and Power Over Ethernet cables, we’re making them available through our distributors at lower than usual prices. 

We are continuing to monitor the rapidly changing situation and keeping watch on our network to ensure that you and your customers can operate business as usual in these unusual times.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

— The SkySwitch Team

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