Since VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology has been commercially available, most of the marketing and promotion surrounding its features have been aimed at front-office staff and managers. However, back-office workers also greatly benefit from the VoIP business system, and although it’s not often stressed, it is also a solid selling point for VoIP.
Back-office workers are the network engineers who design, install, support and maintain information-technology environments inside a business. So what exactly are the benefits for them and how do these advantages contribute to their efficiency and that of the business?
When moving into a new facility the first thing technology engineers consider is the cable plant design. VoIP technology offers many options when designing and budgeting the process, such as letting you run one line to the phone. With a computer jack plugged in the VoIP phone, the connection to the computer is established, effectively reducing the number of drops required for the cable plant.
VoIP networks are also scalable and capable of handling a growing amount of work. To add a new phone to an existing VoIP switch, all you need is to plug it into the network. Once the phone is plugged in and turned on, a quick initialization routine begins and then the phone is ready to be used.
Since adding or moving VoIP phones can be so easy and quick, it allows tech support to quickly set up temporary training rooms. The installation is so simple that it enables even the less trained technician to perform various changes in a very short amount of time.
Mobility Benefits for the Back Office
When VoIP first became available for business 20 years ago, portability was a feature that was promoted but very difficult to deliver. The main setback was the bandwidth limitation outside the office, but this is no longer an issue for businesses.
Now remote access and Virtual Phone Networks (VPN) can extend an employee’s virtual office. Private Branch Exchange (PBX) systems that offer Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) can use their desktop voice applications with their business phone system.
For telecommuters and business travelers, this means taking a laptop and headset with them anywhere to conduct business at any time as if they were in the office, for computer software replaces a desk office telephone.
This is great news for the back-office support team because it drastically reduces the time spent investigating and solving issues for employees who travel for business or work from home. The technician can provide support to them from the office using remote access and other monitoring tools.
In addition, VoIP technology allows businesses to accommodate hoteling workers in the office. As their office space may change from visit to visit, the technical support team is able to configure VoIP phones so that the hoteling worker will always have the same phone number that follows him no matter where he goes. Last-minute changes to schedules happen frequently in an office environment, but with VoIP, engineers are able to react quickly and ensure the worker’s maximum productivity in the office.
Promoting Advanced Technology Using VoIP
Back-office workers understand more than anyone how technology can help a business grow and succeed. And above all, how it can improve their own productivity. That is why these engineers are the number one promoters of advanced technology.
One of the first technology combinations between voice and data system was voicemail integration with email. With the technology improvement, it is now possible to convert voice messages into text and email.
Before VoIP, hardware costs and the incompatibility between phone systems and email servers made it hard and almost impossible to implement this technology. Today, VoIP made this type of implementation technically viable, cost-effective and these features are already integrated applications that run on an existing VoIP server.
As you can see, VoIP technology is highly beneficial to the back-office personnel and should also be promoted as such. It makes their life much easier, from installation and maintenance to everyday troubleshooting in the office, boosting their own efficiency and productivity.