Business VoIP- Phones for Small & Medium Businesses
The Future of VoIP
The future of VoIP is closely connected to how the world of work is changing. Covid-19 has forced many businesses to alter and adapt their working practices. But it has also accelerated changes in working patterns and life that were already underway.
VoIP supports and enables these changes. It is flexible, adaptable, and scalable – essential elements any enterprise must embrace to meet tomorrow’s challenges.
The Rise of Working from Home
Working from home (WFH) did not start in response to Covid-19, but the pandemic has effectively turbo-charged this trend.
During the first lockdown, as many as 60% of the UK’s adult population was working from home.
WFH was already a growing trend, however, with 1.54 million people working from home before lockdown.
When asked, 26% of UK workers said they planned to continue home working after lockdown.
Since the lifting of the first national lockdown, fifty of the country’s largest employers have said they have no plans to return all staff to full-time office working in the immediate future.
Meanwhile, the collective impact of various regional restrictions, and a national circuit-breaker lockdown, is making many businesses look at long-term changes to working patterns and arrangements.
Why is VoIP Important for Changing Work Patterns?
A hosted VoIP (voice over internet protocol) telephone service offers all the capability you would expect from an office communications network, but does so cost-effectively.
And it is highly adaptable to changing conditions and systems.
The challenge many businesses and organisations face is integrating a remote working model into their existing set-up. They need to give remote workers a certain degree of autonomy and empowerment, but also maintain their critical supporting infrastructure and networks.
Simply relying on people to manage with their own mobile devices is too loose and informal, and might not provide sufficient security or administration.
VoIP, on the other hand, has flexibility built-in to how it works, making it the perfect solution for remote working.
Flexible Working with VoIP
Because all the essentials for running a VoIP service come via the cloud, location is no longer an issue.
In a traditional office set-up, hardware and software had to be located on-site, but VoIP is based on software as a service, or SaaS. It means no more complex on-site installations or strict contracts.
This makes VoIP an extremely flexible option, and a scalable one too. In an unpredictable time for so many businesses, VoIP is easily scaled up, or down, according to need.
VoIP and Remote Working
With workforces no longer tied to a single office location, their communication needs must be both agile and reliable.
With VoIP, employees can work from their own mobile devices, or use their computers. Therefore, they can be contactable and fully networked whether working from home, from some other location or when they are on the go.
All is needed is an internet connection, then they can take or make calls through their assigned numbers, take instructions, attend online meetings, and provide updates.
And at the same time, the employer maintains full visibility and control of their call system.
Effective Virtual Teamwork
With video conferencing options, VoIP ensures that teams can work together virtually. This virtual teamworking is becoming increasingly important as remote working becomes the norm.
Not only is virtual teamwork essential for communications but also for maintaining a positive workplace culture and for individual wellbeing.
By integrating this teamworking aspect into their communications systems, employers can put the right foundations in place to ensure their workforces are happy, engaged, and productive.
VoIP and Future Working Trends
Obviously, in the middle of a pandemic, it is difficult to predict the long-term impact and outcome for working practices, but the indications are that the world of work is set for long-term changes on the back of Covid-19.
Remote working and working from home are likely to be here to stay.
Office accommodation will also change, with more businesses leading less space, with fewer workstations.
Another potential growth area is the third space. This is neither the traditional office, nor the home, but a shared, collaborative workspace that sits somewhere in-between.
This could mark greater de-centralisation, where people combine WFH with local, third space co-working centres. This would cut out much of the commute, but enable networking and collaboration.
VoIP is the right fit for these future working trends, offering easy, adaptable installation, reduced infrastructure, and cheaper calls.
Is VoIP Part of Your Future?
VoIP has evolved to become a fully integrated communications system. It offers a unified but flexible solution to modern communications needs, whatever the structure of your working arrangements.