We looked earlier in the week at
the growth of Internet telephony. It is not hard to understand why so many businesses have taken it up given the cost savings involved. In the global economy in which we all now live and work, we have to be able to make international calls at a fraction of the cost they were five years ago. Internet telephony makes this possible.
You would think that SMEs would have been the first to take advantage of the technology but as of last year they were still far behind. According to the
Australian Media Communications Authority, SMEs weren’t taking advantage of VoIP and cloud-based communications services.
It isn’t just Australian SMEs that are missing out. The UK government’s leading advisory group on broadband has found a similar trend in the UK. The
Broadband Stakeholder Group stated that British SMEs need to embrace new technologies like VoIP as much as they can.
The report also found evidence that suggests that if SMEs were to capitalise on the benefits of new technology and superfast broadband they would unlock economic returns of £18.8 billion. Given the budget constraints on SMEs, especially when first starting a business, it seems surprising that they aren’t embracing technologies that can deliver significant returns.
VoIP drives mobility and flexibility
It isn’t just cost savings that could
benefit SMEs. The ability to transfers call between devices, workstations and staff allows for the flexibility that many SMEs need. Flexibility is key. As the business grows, so can the telephony solution. There are relatively low set-up costs for new users so it can meet the demands of the business.
It can even move seamlessly to a bigger office. Currently moving a landline number with you can mean not having a phone for days or even weeks as it is switched over. There is no fix to a physical address so employees can embrace mobility and work from wherever they need to.
The ability to create local numbers is another benefit for growing businesses. Customers can be given a local number for wherever they are instead of having to dial an international number themselves.
In fact the only thing that should be holding any business back, whether large or small, is their internet connection. This is why it is so important that the promises on superfast broadband, whether in cities or in rural locations, become a reality.