In recent years, our communication practices have greatly evolved, in particular thanks to the advent of the Internet and the Cloud. But the efficient management of incoming and outgoing calls remains at the heart of the business challenges of companies. From very small businesses to large groups, many companies have set up a switchboard.
Indeed, telephone reception is one of the determining elements in the management of your customer relationship.
A switchboard or PABX (Private Automatic Branch Exchange) is used to connect your internal telephone lines to the external telephone network. It allows you to redirect external or internal calls to a predefined set, personalize the telephone reception, or manage VoIP.
This is often the first contact a prospect will have with your business. It would be a shame to lose a contract because of an unfriendly switchboard operator, an unprofessional greeting, or worse, a call ringing in the void.
The image of your company and the perception that your prospects and customers will have of your services are therefore directly impacted by the choice of your switchboard. The satisfaction of your customers depends on it and ultimately your turnover.
The range of switchboards is wide and varies depending on the features offered, the size, and the needs of your business.
Why set up a switchboard?
Improving the management of your customer relationship
Being able to respond to each request is a capital issue for every company. Thanks to the switchboard, several call functions and services are available to you:
Make your interlocutor wait with welcome music or a personalized message.
Redirecting the call to another set: in the case of an IVR (Interactive Voice Server), the caller himself chooses the service to which he wants to be redirected; or you have defined upstream a certain number of rules allowing automatic routing (call schedule, contact number, availability of your teams, etc.)
Suggest that your prospect leave a message in the voice mailbox of the right internal contact. You can also read bluehost review.
The switchboard allows your employees to be reached anywhere, all the time. As incoming calls can be redirected to any extension, they can of course be routed to the mobile phone of your nomadic employees.
The gain in efficiency and productivity
With the Telephony-Computer Convergence (CTI), you can connect your telephone lines to your computer network.
What will you tell me?
By integrating your telephone system into your CRM software, you can effectively improve the productivity of your employees, in particular by uploading customer files for each qualified incoming call.
What are the different types of switchboards?
There are three main families of switchboard: PABX / IPBX, CENTREX, and SOFTPHONE.
1 – Physical telephone switchboards: PABX and IPBX
Taking the form of private branch exchanges, the PABX (Private Automatic Branch eXchange) standard is THE traditional standard. This is to connect your analog telephone lines to the outside network.
This installation being quite technical, it requires the intervention of specialized companies and therefore represents a heavy investment both in terms of time and money for a company. Each time a line is opened or an existing line is modified, it will be necessary to create new cable connections.
Fortunately, with the advent of VoIP or Voice over IP, switchboards have gained flexibility.
Made up of telephone lines connected via the Internet and managed using centralized software, IPBX switchboards are much easier to install and therefore less expensive.
Advice: TPE with only two or three analog telephones, you can set up an analog mini-switchboard allowing you to benefit from the same functionalities as a telephone switchboard. By connecting to your ADSL box, you can even enjoy unlimited landline calls. Check with your professional landline operator.
2 – The Centrex switchboard
The IP centrex is a variation of your IPBX standard but outsourced to a service provider. Adopting a Centrex means freeing yourself from all the problems of maintenance, monitoring, and above all, you just need to connect your IP telephones to the internal network!
Operating on a monthly subscription model, this is the ideal solution for small businesses.
3 – The software telephone switchboard: softphone
The softphone is a “softphone” that will allow you to take control of your phone from your workstation. By installing software on one or more of your computers, you will be able to manage all of your telephone communications via your information system. The softphone is made for very small businesses starting their activity and those who do not wish to immediately invest in a switchboard installation. So, using the virtual phone system is the best way for you and you can compare with the Talkroute and any other company for using this service.