What are the Pros & Cons?
Private Branch eXchange:
PBX is a business telephone system generally used to describe multiple call management features like outbound and inbound lines, voicemails, and call routings etc. It generally stands for Private Branch eXchange. PBX is based on a hardware system which is required to handle the call routings and call switching between a specified business location and adjacent telephonic network. It can be very easily understood by a simplified analogy of switchboard operator used for switching and routing. The name, Public Branch eXchange has originated from its functional operation, the way it interacts with PSTN networks. While the term ‘Private’ separates it out from PSTN that it is different from Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), regardless of the fact that it can also be connected to it.
A PBX generally operates in the same way as traditional telephone operators had used to be. Those old-fashioned telephone operators had used to manually operate each telephone circuit by connecting the calls to respective line, all the times by plugging wires into the connector through manual operation to complete the call. While modern systems of today are highly speedy, and above all these are automated. Furthermore, PBX enables mobile companies to offer highly sophisticated call features such as auto-calling, auto-answering, call waiting, voice mails, and playing music or message during call holding. This is how, Private Branch eXchange has made the life easier by efficiently handling the position of traditional manual telephone operators.
Transition of on-premises PBX to Cloud based PBX:
Although, it has marked new advancements in business telephone system, but a further transition of legacy Private Branch eXchange to Cloud based VoIP is also being driven by multiple factors. Companies are now moving towards a hosted VoIP solution from on-premises PBX systems. This transition is also known as cloud Voice over Internet Protocol. Moving PBX to the cloud reduces the cost and complexity and positively impacts business communications of your company. A cloud-based phone system entirely integrates the whole workforce including critical business systems. It also integrates remote as well mobile workers in its span. Although, it ensures agility, mobility, and flexibility, but a comprehensive focus on Pros and Cons of moving from PBX to Cloud is necessary for thorough understanding of the transition.
Key advantages of moving on the Cloud:
- Transition towards cloud ensures unified communication across the company. Usually, companies having on-premises PBX holds different patchworks of tools dealing with business communication. Such tools include web meetings, audio and video conferences, fax machines, and internet individual fax accounts. Such an on-premises approach always lack the very connection between different tools. On the other hand, cloud transition integrates all the business communication tools into a single solution of unified communication including web meetings, voicemail, online faxing, third party audio and video conferencing, and text. Such an approach simplifies the system and reduces cost as well.
- Cloud transition also simplifies the management of phone systems at multiple locations. Administration and maintenance of multi-location systems becomes easy to handle. While previously, it was a nightmare to manage PBX hardware with multiple phones from different vendors being placed at different locations. But after successful transition on the cloud, IT experts can manage the phone systems on the same cloud, although placed at various locations, using a web interface.
- Purchase and Installation of new on-premises PBX systems costs up to tens of thousands of dollars, and for multiple locations, this cost can go beyond even hundreds of thousands of dollars. While cloud hosted PBX system can eliminate the cost of expensive hardware along with cutting the separate cost required for building wire network for phones and data, and other maintenance components. Such a development reduces the cost and additional headache for sophisticated infrastructure management by eliminating the multiple PBX hardware systems, business exchange lines, MPLS, and PSTN etc.
- Cloud PBX also offers powerful features like call recording to enable businesses to keep a record of their calls, IVR technology providing virtual attendants beneficial in higher volumes of incoming calls, direct calls to group of numbers, voicemail transcription, reporting and analytics, call queuing service, live monitoring and management of calls, built-in video conferencing, and informative snippet of call whispering. These are some of the powerful features of cloud-based PBX which gives it an edge over the on-premises PBX system.
- Cloud based solution of Private Branch eXchange makes it very easier for businesses to scale up or scale down their communications as per their requirement. In case of business growth, scaling the communication up becomes very easier. It increases the business agility by reducing the system related management and activation tasks. Cloud based solution also enables you to add new users within very little time.
Disadvantages of moving on the Cloud:
Cloud based PBX solution also associates some limitations with it. It is necessary to take a quick review of them.
- One of the major key disadvantages of moving to the could is the demand of a high-speed internet for its proper functioning. To ensure better quality of sound, it requires good internet connection from your existing internet package.
- In case of cloud-based transition, for cloud telephony, IT staff may require optimizing network routers. It undergoes from trial-and-error stage which can be surprising in some of the Voice over Internet Protocol deployments.
- New deployment always associates with it the need for removal of already established habits and workflows. That is why, sometimes, it becomes challenging. Switching from on-premises PBX to the Cloud will involve the most significant change in the form of new world of advanced features, users might need guidance of that because they are not accustomed. Such a practice requires plenty of time and resources for training of employees and users of the system.
Although cloud computing technology in Private Branch eXchange phone systems offers highly flexible solution, with efficiency and agility, providing scalable opportunities to the companies. But some of the businesses are still hesitant to adopt the technology which involves the compromise on full control of their data.
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