What is an IP PBX and How Can It Benefit My Business?

A Private Branch Exchange (or PBX) is the system that has controlled business communications for decades. It allows companies to use fewer individual phone lines to connect employees with customers by utilizing extensions rather than numerous hard-wired connections. PBX systems provide powerful communications, productivity and reporting capabilities that are needed to run a successful company.

Advent of the Computer Network

As computer networking became a necessity in business, companies often needed to keep two different communications infrastructures running simultaneously. Older phone structures like traditional PBX systems, as well as computer networks that connect computers, printers and other devices, and link to web related resources.

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In Comes the Internet

Since the advent of Voice over IP (VoIP) technology, offices throughout the world have started to migrate away from the hardwired switches that have been the backbone of business telephony for decades. The transition toward network-based IP PBX solutions is well underway.

The IP Update

IP PBX systems work much the same way as their traditional counterparts, but with fewer actual pieces of hardware… and far fewer cords… and they use the internet instead of hard-wired phone lines to send phone calls as data through the Internet. By relying on Internet-based technology, IP PBX systems offer standard features to businesses that amount to major advances on older technology. Voicemail, fax, unified messaging, teleconferencing, contact center capabilities, mobile accessibility and much more can be easily set up and utilized through an IP PBX.

The IP Advantages

The biggest difference between a traditional PBX system and an IP PBX system (aside from using the internet rather than the traditional phone network) is that calls can be routed to many different types of extensions while still providing the same experience for callers. For instance, a VoIP-based system can be run to IP phones, which look like traditional hard-wired handsets, as well as desktop-based softphones that allow calls to be answered, recorded and logged through the computer. Internal extensions route the calls to each different type of location while still providing the same experience for end users. IP systems also allow users to forward extensions to locations off property like home phones, mobile phones and computers. Depending on the system, they may not require much more than an Internet connection and password to provide telecommuters with the same access that employees who operate from inside the building have. IP PBX systems can change the way that businesses operate by providing unlimited access to telecommunications systems from anywhere in the world. Customers receive a seamless experience when calling, and employees have the flexibility that our digital world requires. Overall, the upfront expenditure to implement an IP PBX is much less than traditional, hardwired systems because Internet-based systems generally require far less hardware. IP PBX systems also tend to be inclusive, and features like call waiting, three-way calling, caller ID and more are standard rather than a la carte.

PBX of the Future (and Now)

IP PBX systems capitalize on the cost-saving capability of the original PBX functionality while integrating it into the evolving nature of VoIP communication. As our world becomes more global, employees need unlimited access to telecommunications options from wherever they are. IP PBX systems are fulfilling that demand by offering fully functional, Internet-based communications systems that provide a seamless experience for the customer no matter where the recipient is located. Zultys premises, virtual and hosted PBX systems have been designed from the ground up to utilize the latest IP PBX technology to deliver the greatest benefits and cost savings advantages to customers, while ensuring the most feature-rich packages on an award-winning, reliable platform. For more information on Zultys IP PBXs visit www.oktelephone.com/zultys