By Allison Francis
The telecommunications industry has undergone a pretty big transformation in recent years. Fading into the back shelves of storage rooms everywhere are the cables, wires, black boxes and clunky equipment of the phone systems of yesteryear, giving way to – yep, you guessed it – cloud technology.
The cloud, or more specifically, cloud hosted communications, has fundamentally altered the IT landscape. Landline phones are largely becoming obsolete. In terms of modern business telephone services, many are turning to hosted private branch exchange (PBX) systems.
Steadfast Solutions (No. 259 on the 2018 MSP 501) is one such company. As you may well already know, hosted PBX uses cloud technology to make calls instead of a traditional phone line, boasting greater connectivity, more features and reduced costs. It provides all of the key features of a business-grade phone system plus unified communications. To Steadfast Solutions, hosted PBX is the future of business telephony, the obvious shift away from traditional phone systems.
“Hosted PBX offerings reduce the physical footprint and remove the fundamental risk and cost associated with owning or managing in-house equipment,” says Craig Jacotine, general manager at Steadfast. “Steadfast Solutions’ hosted PBX offering allows us to reach into the all-important telephone domain and, given how technology has progressed, touches the whole landscape of businesses.”
Jacobin says that another key component and advantage of the technology is the ability to provide one service desk to support the customer for multiple facets of their business, with the same consistency that they would expect from their current IT support.
Another advantage is the reduced physical space that a conventional telephone system would require. All that needs to be purchased is the licensing. Gone are the days of tripping over tangles of cords and wires and having to utilize multiple plug-ins. Handsets can be used anywhere, provided there is an internet connection — no reliance on premises-based equipment.
There is still pretty stiff competition within the marketplace among traditional telecom, VoIP and hosted PBX providers. Keeping in mind that deciding which service is “better” depends entirely on a business’ needs, hosted PBX makes a pretty strong case for itself due to the simple fact that it is … simpler. It is extremely cost-effective, it can be used nearly anywhere and it requires none of the bulky hardware of traditional on-premises systems.
Say, for example, if your business is projecting rapid growth in the next few years, hosted might be a better option, as there is no need to upgrade equipment and small adjustments can be made as needed. Yet another perk of cloud services.
It’s the responsibility of the MSP to be tuned in to what technology best fits their client’s business. Some may very well need on-premises PBXs; for others, it makes more sense to choose hosted PBX systems. For Steadfast Solutions, considering the trends in simplicity and cost efficiency and the way the industry is moving in general, the competition appears to be in their favor.