Functionality, flexibility drive business phone system changes

    The office phone system of tomorrow will need to be much more advanced than the legacy solutions many organizations are using today. Land line offerings are on their way out and are quickly being replaced with VoIP services and other technologies that have greater functionality and are capable of meeting evolving demands in the corporate setting.

    A recent report by SmallBiz Technology said future business phone systems will need to incorporate mobility if they are to be accessed by the whole private sector. The proliferation of smartphones and tablets in the workplace is being driven by the consumerization of IT and the emergence of bring your own device (BYOD), which allows employees to use personal mobile gadgets for corporate tasks.

    BYOD and other mobile strategies are expanding the mobile workforce. As this happens, the office phone system will need to provide network access to these individuals when they are in or outside the workplace. If an offering does not support mobility, it will not survive in tomorrow's business world.

    Other characteristics required of the future phone system

    While mobility will play an important role in the transformation of business communications, employees and decision-makers alike will demand the use of VoIP services that work for small business, SmallBiz Technology noted. This is largely because VoIP solutions are much more flexible than many of today's offerings.

    The No. 1 goal for most companies is to expand their customer bases and generate more revenue. This can be difficult to do if their phone systems cannot mature with the company. For this reason, among others, businesses around the world demand flexible communication platforms that can support long-term growth, the news source said.

    Furthermore, decision-makers want increased functionality out of their phone systems, encouraging more organizations to deploy unified communications, which combines voice with a number of other high-quality collaboration solutions. A recent study by CompTIA revealed that approximately 80 percent of companies said they saw value from deploying unified communications, which can enhance business operations in a number of ways.

    "Organizations have a clear vision of what they expect to gain from unified communications - greater employee productivity, reduced costs and a means to improve customer engagement," said Seth Robinson, director of technology analysis at CompTIA.

    While unified communications is being driven by a number of demands, the growing use of VoIP services is among the top reasons for implementing the technology. This ongoing evolution in business communications means many things, but mostly that the legacy phone system is no longer an applicable option for the private sector, especially in today's fast-paced, highly mobile setting.

    As the business world continues to evolve and mature, executives need to stay one step ahead of the competition and consider replacing their old-school phones with advanced IP solutions. In doing so, a firm will be able to embrace next-generation collaboration systems more efficiently and without delay.