4 common mistakes when replacing telephony systems

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Unified communications (UC) systems including telephony services are a reliable way to improve business efficiency while providing the best possible customer service to clients, and they're often easy to use as well. But according to No Jitter contributor Melissa Swartz, while the reliability of telephony systems is an undeniable advantage that helps firms stay connected and improves collaboration, some organizations make the mistake of confusing reliability with simplicity. In fact, telephony systems are highly complex, and there are several mistakes enterprises should avoid when implementing these technologies. 

1. Failing to provide training
Some business leaders and IT professionals assume that extensive training is unnecessary after a new telephony system has been put in place. However, many new solutions offer features including collaboration tools and mobility applications, and employees will only be able to use these to their advantage if they've been trained on them up front. 

2. Not assessing business needs
Occasionally, firms make the mistake of believing that they should simply replace their existing phone system with one that essentially replicates the same features. Swartz reported that this is a mistake, as telephony systems have changed significantly in the last five years. By executing a thorough assessment of business needs and technical requirements, organizations can take advantage of the productivity enhancements that most telephony providers now offer. 

3. Discounting infrastructure issues
There are several underlying infrastructure concerns that firms need to take into account when introducing a new telephony system, and these often go ignored. Swartz highlighted that most new telephony systems have a VoIP component, which in turn means that data switches for the IP or SIP phones should support virtual local area networks (VLANs) and quality of service (QoS).

All of these various capabilities must be configured to work on the organization's existing network, and firms that want the systems to work during a power outage must also have switches that support Power Over Ethernet (POE). Meeting such stringent requirements can sometimes be costly, which means that enterprises need to assess these factors as soon as possible.

4. Ignoring 911 requirements
Different states have varying requirements when it comes to e911 regulations, but for safety reasons it's important to identify the address where a 911 caller is located during an emergency. Luckily, The Digest recently reported that VoIP phone systems have several new features that protect users in the event of an emergency. Implementing these services can ensure that the business is safeguarded during unforeseen events. 

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