Across industries, small businesses share many of the same struggles. Owners work hard day in and day out to grow their companies, trying different processes and technologies to improve operations and productivity. What many discover is they can realize significant gains by simply switching their communications technology to VoIP for small business.

You may be wondering whether a new phone system really can have that big of an impact on the health of your business. The answer is YES–if you go with a solution that’s built for your organization’s size and goals. To help you select the right one, we’ve outlined the challenges faced by a typical small business and mapped them to VoIP solutions that meet their needs.

The Challenge: Pressure on the small business owner

As a small business owner, you’re under a crazy amount of pressure. From the second you roll out of bed until you close your eyes at night, your business is in the forefront of your mind. Throughout the day, you’re pulled in multiple directions, assisting clients and employees, making sure the business runs smoothly. You have a lot to worry about. In fact, many small business owners grapple with similar issues, as discovered in a recent survey by the web site Small Business Trends. The biggest challenge for 2019 is probably no surprise: maintaining the bottom line, followed closely by growing revenue.

To survive, thrive and increase profit margins, small businesses need to increase productivity and efficiency. The survey found most owners and managers plan to accomplish this by investing in innovation, technology and talent. But let’s not forget that most small businesses operate a tight budget, with access to a limited amount of resources. That means new technologies have to be easy to use and affordable.

A VoIP phone solution delivers on both accounts. It supports small businesses by increasing workforce productivity and operational efficiency. As owners gain more time to spend on strategic initiatives, employees embrace a phone system that gives them independence, makes their everyday tasks easier and lets them focus on higher-value work. Intrigued? Let’s take a closer look at how it all happens.

The Solution: How VoIP helps your small business excel

To help small businesses overcome obstacles to growth, a VoIP phone system has to deliver on all fronts: features, functionality, price and ease of use. As a small business owner, you don’t have time to research every vendor in the market, so use our cheat sheet to help weigh your options and make the best choice for your company.

Features

Every small business requires certain must-haves. Of course you’ll want the basics, such as audio and web conferencing as well as instant messaging. Another important feature is video collaboration, which fosters teamwork. Then there are tools like voicemail transcription and call recording, which help increase productivity.

And let’s not forget about mobile support. When your team’s small, employees are often on the go, visiting clients or working remotely. A mobile app that provides seamless access to all VoIP communications features keeps everything running smoothly. Employees get the freedom to work anywhere, contributing to productivity no matter where they are.

Some business VoIP services include innovative ways to increase productivity and collaboration. Mitel Teamwork, for example, melds web, desktop and mobile application to keep employees connected even when they’re on the road. Business SMS, conferencing features and individual and group chat make it easy to connect and work on projects together. Workspaces and personal dashboards show users what tasks they need to complete and track progress on to-dos. These tools are efficiency boosters for any small business.

A company contact center creates a whole new list of must-haves. Call routing, agent queueing, inbound calls and outbound dialers increase agent productivity and customer satisfaction. Also, make sure any VoIP solution you consider provides reporting and analytics capabilities. That way you can clearly track progress and measure success.

Functionality

The last thing you need is for your system to go down so you can’t communicate with your employees or customers. Reliability is key. Look for a provider with a proven track record of dependability. Because MiCloud Connect is built on Google Cloud, it delivers exceptional quality, reliability and security so you have one less thing to worry about at night.

Another must is the ability to integrate with existing systems – easily. If you’re like most small business owners, you don’t have time or money to waste on technological integration projects. You just need it to happen, and quickly. Define your integration needs, whether you’re using Outlook, G Suite, Salesforce, another CRM or all of the above. Knowing your requirements up front will help you eliminate providers that don’t offer the capabilities you need.

Pricing

Especially for small business, a VoIP phone solution has to be affordable. Fortunately, there are a number of powerful yet affordable options available. Some solutions offer mix and match pricing. You can subscribe to the features your users need and easily change them as demands evolve. That way, you pay only for what you need.

Another thing to look for is pricing flexibility. For example, at the beginning you may only need conferencing and collaboration for a small group. As your team grows, you’ll want to expand your service to support larger groups. A scalable solution keeps your budget in check while still providing the communications tools your team requires for success on a day-to-day basis.

Regardless of cost, the system should be easy to buy. Your time is valuable, so purchasing should be painless and hassle-free.

Easy to implement and use

Finally, the system has to be simple to set up and intuitive. MiCloud Connect’s plug-and-play functionality, for example, ensures a smooth transition that imposes minimal disruption on your business. While change may not be something you or your employees love, a simple interface that offers single-click functionality, a seamless experience across devices and real-time management will have everyone up and running in no time with minimal training. Trust us when we say no one will miss the outdated system that slowed them down and made daily tasks more difficult.

In order to grow, small businesses need communications tools that deliver the biggest bang for the buck. A powerful and innovative business VoIP phone system, one that’s easy to buy and simple to install and use, hits the bullseye. Catapult your small business into the black by increasing productivity and operational efficiency without breaking the bank.

Cover image of Mitel’s Digital Transformation for Dummies asset

Digital transformation has become a top initiative for business and IT leaders. In today’s business world, sustainable market leadership is no longer based solely on which company has the best products or even the best people. Instead, organizations that are agile and can quickly adapt to rapidly evolving market trends will become market leaders.

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