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Virtual PBX - Why It’s The Future

How to streamline your business communication

Overview

The term PBX (Private Branch Exchange) refers to a type of telephone system used within companies. It’s set up to allow users to make calls both inside and outside of a company. In short, the term describes a business phone system.

What is a virtual PBX?

Where a traditional PBX connects its users via the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), a virtual PBX service employs cloud-based software and VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol).

Virtual PBX provides every functionality of traditional PBX and some bonus features. That means that all the security, voicemail, and conferencing capabilities you’re used to with traditional PBX are accounted for when you switch over to virtual PBX.

Benefits of virtual PBX

With VoIP little expensive hardware is required, and there are fewer ongoing maintenance costs. With traditional on-premises phone systems, users can pay thousands of pounds for onsite hardware and need to invest in regular upkeep of the network.

Unified communication

With a virtual PBX phone system for business, you’ll be able to cover all of your communications needs, from audio conferencing to group chats and virtual meetings.

Great hosted PBX providers will ensure that all of your company’s devices are connected via one PBX system as well. So that all mobile devices, laptops, and desktops associated with a business can communicate with each other (and external devices) via the same system.

In other words, all communications can take place over one multi-functional conferencing platform.

Connected Over the Internet

Hosted PBX systems work utilising an internet connection. They work wirelessly, without the hassle of installing lots of complex and difficult-to-maintain hardware.

Connecting the company via the Internet also makes it convenient to work with distributed teams within your business. You can arrange real-time online meetings (with or without video) with team members worldwide. Since there isn’t any hardware involved, remote employees’ devices can easily be included in the system.

Can Use Web & Mobile Phones

Whether your company uses Android phones, iOS devices like iPhones and iPads, or VoIP-based Internet phones, PBX is compatible with all of these.

Virtual PBX gives businesses the freedom to choose what sorts of hardware to use. This can be especially useful for companies that don’t issue company phones, like small businesses. With PBX, every kind of device can use the same web conferencing software.

Low Cost & Easy to Manage

Using virtual PBX means avoiding on-site equipment. Depending on how many premises your business operates, this can save you a lot of money, especially when considering that hardware needs to be maintained and repaired regularly.

With PBX, you choose your pricing bracket upfront. That’s the only cost you’ll need to cover each month or year to keep your company’s communication system online at all times.

Virtual PBX provides you with both low costs and simple, effective phone system management.

Reliable

As long as your devices have internet connectivity, they’ll be able to connect using your PBX system. That means that there’s no risk of hardware malfunction taking the system down since it’s not dependent on any hardware.

Connect to Business Locally and Globally

Since virtual PBX isn’t tied to particular hardware, this means you’ll be able to connect to your business’ system both locally and abroad. This is perfect for remote workers, in addition to anyone planning on attending conference calls while they’re away from the business’s sites.

With virtual PBX, all you need is a web browser, and you’ll be able to join any online events hosted by your company, no matter where you are or which device you’re using.

Secure

RingCentral’s virtual PBX system stores all users’ data securely in the cloud. This means that all the data it handles is username and password-protected, so only authorised individuals can access it. To prevent interception of your communications, we provide Transport Layer Security (TLS) and Secure Real-Time Transport Protocol (SRTP) encryption between all endpoints.

Storing data securely but accessibly (especially for remote workers) can be exceptionally challenging. That’s why it’s so valuable that RingCentral’s virtual PBX solution does this automatically.

Work Anywhere. Productivity has no limits.

What does PBX mean for phones?

RingCentral’s PBX can turn office phones into portable video conferencing tools capable of connecting users globally. It does this by enabling users to harness VoIP video calling technologies.

PBX also gives any phone the ability to act as a company telephone or cellular device. So, there’s no need to invest in new landlines or other devices that might break or become defunct over time; instead, you can use any functioning mobile device to make high-quality video and audio business calls.

Beyond that, PBX reduces the need to have physical phones altogether. Since it works via the Internet, it’s perfectly compatible with VoIP softphones and other virtual phones. These aren’t fettered to a company’s premises, making working remotely effortless.

unified communications between remote teams
all-in-one communications

Is VoIP better than landline?

The short answer is yes, it's worth switching to VoIP.

For one thing, VoIP offers a far greater range of services. VoIP phones can, for example, host video calls with HD video. Therefore you can attend any web conference or video meeting using a VoIP phone, while a traditional non-VoIP landline obviously can’t provide such a service.

VoIP phones also generally come with instant messaging functions. So, you can join a non-video web meeting using your VoIP-based softphone, which a standard non-VoIP landline simply can’t offer.

Another point in favour of VoIP is that it’s possible to set up a landline when you opt for VoIP telephony. Indeed you can maintain access to any features and phone numbers you enjoyed as part of your landline experience, only they’ll now be hosted over the Internet instead.

3 virtual PBX features that businesses love

1. Virtual Conferencing Abilities

PBX makes video conferencing effortless- whenever, as often, and wherever you need to employ it. Anyone in the world can join your video conference with ease, provided you’ve sent them a meeting invite.

Hosts and attendees alike can use their Linux, Mac, or Microsoft devices to join your virtual conference room, replacing the need to gather everyone in a physical meeting room. All you and your participants require is access to the company’s PBX system and a browser like Chrome.

2. Collaboration Capabilities

The conferencing services that virtual PBX makes available to businesses are just the beginning of the collaboration tools they can host.

With access to VoIP video conferencing software, virtual PBX makes all video communication run smoothly and efficiently. This renders virtual video communication a viable alternative to face-to-face conversations when it comes to business.

Virtual PBX also grants companies the use of other helpful collaboration tools. These include file sharing, screen sharing (including the ability to screen share during a video conference), and in-built messaging systems.

3. Improved Customer Satisfaction

If you’ve been searching for ways to improve your CRM (Customer Relationship Management), look no further than virtual PBX.

Since virtual PBX makes it possible to connect to your company’s telephony system no matter where you are or which device you’re using, your teams will also be able to reach customers even when phone service is down or a company computer malfunctions. You’ll eliminate entirely the possibility of leaving customers unable to contact you.

RingCentral also offers IVR features (Interactive voice response) to interact with incoming calls and gather information from customers by giving them choices via a menu. It then performs actions based on the caller’s answers through the telephone keypad or their voice response.

IVR can provide information or, if the issue is more complex, route callers to a human agent who can better handle their needs, improving the customer experience.

RingCentral is available to resolve customer queries 24/7, and virtual PBX allows companies to offer the same level of service, thereby making it an attractive option to businesses.

RingCentral is just easy, easy, easy. I think I had 95% of the system for our entire company set up in about 10 minutes.

James Trazzera, General Manager, Intranet Technica

How do I set up a virtual PBX?

Setting up cloud PBX is quick and straightforward. You needn’t even be skilled with IT to handle the process.

When you install RingCentral’s products, all you need to do is get in touch with our 24/7 teams. They’ll walk you (or your office manager) through the process step-by-step.

Once the virtual PBX has been set up, it will need very little system management to keep working smoothly and effectively for as long as you need it.

Why businesses choose RingCentral’s virtual PBX system to streamline communication

Key RingCentral Features

Pricing:

RingCentral offers flexible pricing options to suit any budget. We also offer a free version you can try out to see how well it suits your specific needs.

Hosting:

When you host a virtual meeting, you gain access to a wide selection of helpful web conferencing tools. These include breakout rooms, content sharing, and a toggle to allow or disallow dial-ins.

Scalable:

Being cloud-based comes with even more advantages; RingCentral’s virtual PBX system has excellent scalability, so it evolves with your business no matter how rapidly you grow.

Flexible:

User configurations can be changed on an individual basis, meaning that each person in your company can adjust the PBX interface to make it feel more intuitive to them.

Seamless Integration:

With RingCentral as a service provider, you’ll have access to add-on functions and integrations for many popular desktop and mobile apps. It also lets you work in tandem with hardware like a webcam or smart whiteboard.

video call at home office

Additional Features the Business Needs

1. Voice to Email

RingCentral allows you to send voicemail as an email attachment. Find out more about how this works here and how it can benefit your business.

This is a type of virtual receptionist and can be used as a call management tool.

3. Call Queueing, Forwarding & Recording

Our virtual PBX offers call routing, call forwarding and call recording to enhance the customer experience.

4. Unlimited Messaging & Meetings

Our virtual PBX’s utility doesn’t end with virtual conference rooms, either. We offer unlimited messaging and meetings on top of our other services.

5. Conference Bridging

This is one of our video conferencing solutions. It allows groups of people to dial into a virtual meeting room.

Virtual PBX Frequently Asked Questions

Is a phone call considered virtual?

If you’re using a virtual PBX system to place the call, then it’s considered virtual.

What is virtual PBX vs on-premises PBX?

On-premises PBX uses hardware located at a physical business site, while virtual PBX is based in the cloud and uses VoIP.

How to set up a virtual PBX system?

Get in touch with RingCentral’s customer service help desk, available 24/7. They’ll provide you with detailed instructions.

How to choose a PBX provider?

Decide which features you want your PBX system to have, then compare those offered by each provider. RingCentral offers a wide range of advanced features.

How much does a PBX cost?

That depends on both your provider and your plan. RingCentral offers many flexible plans to suit all budgets. Check them out here.

What is the difference between PBX and PABX?

PABX is a newer version of traditional PBX. It uses computers to automate the switching process associated with making calls, where ‘old’ PBX required manual switchboard operators.

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