VoIP technology helps countless Canadian businesses increase workplace efficiency and achieve stronger customer connections every year. In Canada, VoIP providers are many, so choosing one can be tough.
Modern VoIP phone systems, basically internet telephones, can make business phone systems easier to use, increase customer service response times, adapt to modern work environments, and reduce corporate communication costs.
These benefits are impressive and can be a potent competitive edge. However, for a business to fully exploit the potential of a VoIP phone system, it must be paired with the right telecommunications provider.
In this article, you’ll learn how to choose a Canadian VoIP phone provider to help your business improve operational efficiencies, lower communication costs, and better serve your needs.
6 Tips to Choose the Best Canadian VoIP Provider
The VoIP phone provider you end up choosing will have a measurable and significant effect on your business. Finding the right provider requires some research and evaluation, but the end result will be worth it.
Here are six tips to help you in your search for an experienced communications firm that understands your needs, knows how to overcome your communication challenges, and has a proven track record for reliability.
- Evaluate your business’s phone system needs
- Make a list of the voice services and features that interest you
- Explore and research different VoIP phone systems
- Determine your communication services budget
- Consider ongoing maintenance and training needs
- Research various VoIP phone providers in Canada
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Tip#1: Know Your Business Phone Needs First
Before reaching out to a VoIP sales agent, first, take some time and evaluate your business’s communication needs. That way, when you speak to a VoIP phone provider, you’ll know the solutions you’re looking for and can dictate the problems you’d like their services to resolve.
During your evaluation, assess your current internal and external communication systems. Consider the quality of your customer communications and try to identify areas of concern or opportunities for improvement.
Try asking yourself and your team members a few of the following questions:
- How much of your business relies on phone use?
- How many people need consistent, reliable access to a phone line to perform their duties?
- What is your employees’ biggest complaint about the current business phone system?
- Where do your people work? Are they together in a centralized location? Or are people scattered across different places, such as in a remote or hybrid work environment?
- How do your team members stay connected? Is communication done primarily through mobile phone calls, in-person conversations, text messages, emails, video conferencing, or a fluctuating blend of all portals?
Tip #2: List the VoIP Phone Services and Features That Interest You
Once you’ve assessed your business needs, it’s time to start exploring different VoIP phone services and their features included. If you have an idea of the services you need, this process will be much easier. However, if you’re still unsure what you need, have a sit down with a VoIP provider to discuss your needs.
VoIP phone systems have numerous advanced features to choose from. Some of the most popular ones VoIP users in Canada prefer include:
The auto attendant feature helps busy companies manage incoming calls. Auto attendant services allow you to customize greetings and menu options for incoming calls and direct callers to the right person or department.
Voicemail to Email
For employees regularly in transit, the voicemail-to-email feature is a VoIP-powered feature that will help them respond faster to incoming inquiries, team member requests and be apprised of important information.
Ring Groups and Hunt Groups
Do you have multiple people who you want to be able to answer a call? A ring group makes incoming calls ring a number of lines, allowing one of a group of employees or officers to answer them. If you want calls to go through a sequence of people before routing to voicemail, a hunt group is an algorithm that allows incoming calls to route through a series of numbers when lines are busy.
The above three features are just a brief sample of the expansive range of features you can choose from your robust VoIP phone system.
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Tip #3: Explore Different VoIP Phone Services
After you know the services and features your business will most benefit from, it’s time to research different VoIP phone systems. This step is important because not all VoIP providers offer the same services or features. You can avoid any unpleasant surprises down the road by doing your homework upfront.
When comparing different systems, be sure to specifically compare what each plan offers in terms of features and services. Also, consider setup and installation fees, monthly rates, and long-term contracts. Remember, finding a system that fits both your short term, and long term needs is essential.
Examples of different VoIP phone systems best for Canadian businesses include:
- Hybrid IP PBX
- Communication Platform as a Service (CPaaS)
Tip #4: Determine Your Phone Services Budget
Whether you’re looking for a new business VoIP phone system or simply exploring your options, it’s important to think about your budget and what that means for your long-term communication needs.
Factors like setup and installation fees, monthly rates, and long-term contracts can all play a role in determining how much you can afford to spend on your phone services.
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To help you navigate these decisions, here are some tips for determining your budget:
Prioritize the features and services you need most. Different VoIP providers offer other packages and bundles that may include a wide range of features and services. Focusing on what matters most to you will help you determine where to set your budget.
Look at long-term costs as well as upfront costs. While some VoIP providers charge higher upfront fees, they may have lower monthly rates. On the other hand, some providers may offer very low setup or installation fees but higher monthly charges. Evaluating short- and long-term costs is the best way to find a balance that works for your business.
Experienced communication firms in Canada should be willing to work with you to create a solution that meets your needs and budget. At Sunco, we work closely with our clients and customize service packages to reduce communication costs and increase their phone system quality.
Tip #5: Consider Ongoing Maintenance and Training Services
Your business VoIP phone system will likely require regular maintenance and technical support long after the setup and installation process is complete. A maintenance service package from the provider is a safe and convenient way to ensure your communication technology operates at capacity and meets its potential.
Monthly service packages should include software updates, troubleshooting support, and user training. In many cases, these services may be included in your monthly rate or come at an additional cost, so be sure you understand what’s involved and how much it will cost.
With the right provider and phone system, you can enjoy reliable and efficient VoIP phone services that exceed your business needs.
Tip #6: Explore Local Business VoIP Providers
Once you have a good picture of what you want and need from a VoIP provider, it’s time to shop around for the provider to partner with. As with every meaningful procurement process, read online reviews, ask other business owners who their VoIP provider is, and attain multiple quotes.
Once you’ve narrowed down your choices to a select few, schedule consultations and ask each potential provider the following questions:
- What are the installation and setup costs?
- Can you integrate with our equipment and mobile devices?
- In the event of a service outage, what should I expect from your company?
- What measures do you take to prevent security issues and privacy breaches?
- Are training and support included in your monthly fees?
- How can you improve our current communication system and call quality?
Additionally, review all contract terms before signing up. Many national providers require long-term contracts, so be sure you’re comfortable with the commitment before signing up.
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Maximize Business Communication Potential with Sunco
Whether you’re a large or small business looking for a reliable VoIP solution or, simply want to improve your current phone system, Sunco Communication & Installation is here to help. With over 20 years of experience in the Canadian communications industry, we are committed to providing reliable, affordable solutions that meet all your business needs.
For more information on our extensive range of business VoIP services and features, contact our representatives today.