What is cloud computing technology and what attributes of it make them stand out against the license-based on-premise software applications? The question interests every entrepreneur. Besides, they are also keen in understanding that how cloud computing works. And obviously, before making any investment they would like to know the ins and outs of the cloud computing model. However, the non-availability of perfect cloud computing basics tutorials sometimes disappoint their inquisitive minds. Here is a small basic introduction to cloud computing applications and their advantages.
Different variants exist of cloud computing definition, but the most simplistic would be that it’s a type of grid-computing where the unused processing potential of a number of computers in a network is used to derive computing impetus for a standalone computer. And, what is more interesting is, this power can provide a substitute for the needs of servers, storage and applications, and can be availed by users over the Internet against a flexible pay-as-go subscription model. Let’s see why this has become all the rage in the business ecosystem.
Today’s enterprises are more dispersed and people are more mobile than ever. And so are the customer segments which they serve. Hence, while discussing the benefits of cloud computing applications, we can’t ignore the allegiance that the technology gives to achieve collaboration. With just an Internet connected device, an employee has the privilege to access to business information from anywhere around the globe. This favors more collaborative working as multiple people can view and edit the same information at once.
All applications and services receive automatic updates from the centrally managed data centers of the vendor. All users of an enterprise can stay at par in terms of the versions of the running applications, they don’t need to wait for IT to come and perform the updates. Besides performance updates, security updates do make a significant impact as business IT heads don’t have to apply extra effort and money to protect their network against emerging threats or unauthorized access or breaching.
Entrepreneurs can revitalize their cloud-based CRM, ERP, e-Commerce or other applications from time to time by pushing new developments to users. Thus, everyone gets benefitted at the same time.
Mobile Collaboration with No hidden Cost, Low Rates with Fine Quality. Is this not what as a business head you would be most interested in being in the quest of the best VoIP phone service? Did you get an advertisement yelling out the same, but good enough to rope in beginners in the world of illusion? Were you not disappointed with the companies calming to offer the best VoIP business solutions in India? Understanding the crux of the complexity involved with decision-making, we are presenting an industry insights on how to select the best VoIP business communication solutions provider.
Identify the needs of your industry, customers, employees and business operations. Is your business dispersed – globally or locally, – or consolidated in a single building or on a floor? Also learn about what kind of VoIP business communication system your competitors have in place. Think of collaboration features and tools that are easy-to-use, can reduce the operational cost and maximize the workforce performance by allowing effortless sharing of information on the real-time basis. Thereafter, keeping the objectives of your mission and vision at the center-stage, generate a list of VoIP service providers which are capable of offering viable solution within your budget.
Features, benefits, costs and discounts – no doubt these are important in the world of marketing. Interestingly, the market is abundant with their different alternatives, but what about the reliability aspect. Certainly, there exists no alternative to it. Hence, on doing a litmus test, you would find fewer cloud telephony vendors to serve as the right fit. A business is based on mutual trust, and in today’s highly dynamic business ecosystem, communication helps in building and nurturing that. Hence, before zeroing in on a vendor, review the past of different service providers. If possible get in touch with their clients. Seek recommendations from friends and family members. Focus on the availability of the quality service, but do confirm whether the selected vendor has a responsive customer support to handle urgent situations.
Getting a VoIP partner with a positive track record is essential and can be reassuring for your business endeavor. However, sometimes the additional features can put you on crossroads. For instance, features like instant messaging chat, call recording, voice mail, 3-way calling, drag-and-drop calling and call waiting options, among many others, which are important for one business owner can’t necessarily be your cup of tea. Hence, getting them on board just for the heck of it will not be a prudent decision. Cancel those, if you really don’t need them, and ask your vendor to customize the VoIP package for you. Save money, rather utilize it on other essential features that would improve team collaboration and drive the operational efficiency.
Business to business communications (B2B) is the most important industrial marketing search term in the present scenario. On Google alone, the phrase B2B communications was searched by 610 users this month till last week. Many companies are planning to invest in b2b sectors in India, and some are still trying to figure out the best b2b partner. All the rage that we witness today holds rationale as India is a rapidly growing economy and the net worth of B2B is estimated to be around $300 billion, which is likely to reach $700 billion by 2020. Obviously, communication is an essential tool that we highlighted in the beginning, to keep a business actively functional, however, there is a brusque shift from PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) to ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) and VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), which has given birth of a new phrase, viz., Cloud Telephony Service, and IT heads and business administers are considering it as the real future of business communications. Why are the companies aggressively investing in b2b marketing strategies related to communication? Here are two prominent driving factors.
Provisions seamless and simultaneous transmission of data, voice and video in the same line
B2B cloud telephony opens the gateway of unified communications, and more importantly, the services can be used over the ordinary PSTN phone lines. The ISDN protocol favors the transmission of data – in both upstream and downstream directions – with a speed of 128kbits/second, which is really encouraging, as it significantly improves the voice quality and opens room for better collaboration through interactive audio or video conferencing, which is quite in demand.
Cuts down operational & maintenance costs
It discards the need to have expensive on-premise PBX systems, gateways or routers. Advanced soft phones are required, but considering the long term benefits with their enhanced features, that shouldn’t be a worrying matter. Moreover, it thwarts away the ongoing equipment maintenance budget, and gives freedom to entrepreneurs from mammoth telephone bills that plague them every month. With cloud telephony in place, a business owner doesn’t need to resort on in-house technical support team for system administration, inventory management, security management, and more as entire obligations remain on the service provider. A leading analyst firm has quoted that 42% of the total call costs (on Local and long distance calls) made through a customer-owned IP PBX is spent on owning and maintaining the phone system per se.
Irrespective of the revolutionary evolution pursued in the field of digital marketing and substantial increase in channels like email marketing, affiliate marketing, search engine marketing, social media marketing, etc., voice communication or business phone systems play a dominant role, and as of now there is no substitute for it. Whether it’s getting started with a new business, relocating it, extending its branches and offices, incorporating new employees, or matching with the changing business needs, or replacing the existing phone system, the situation may bring you on the verge of choosing a new business phone system or holistic telephony solution. Though there are different vendors in the market promising business phone system with tangible and non-tangible features, which may lead to explicit or implicit benefits, choosing the right business phone system or telephony solution is bit challenging. After all, it is a lifeline of any business, and hence should fulfill its needs at different stages.
Fonebell brings a guide to help you with. Walk through the stages sequentially.
Know what you want to achieve with your phone system
This is a primary concern. Create a sketch that where it would be used, who well use it and for what purpose. Do you want it for internal business communication or an external one, or for both? What it would satiate, the B2B or B2C marketing endeavor?
Understand the strategic priorities of the business. Identify the right product and the right features to align with your business objectives. Here is a peak into some of the salient features available with Fonebell business phones systems and telephony solutions.
Explore VoIP business solution
Cloud is often regarded as a disruptive technology. But none would adopt just for the heck of it. See where it stands better against traditional PSTN phone system. What are the unique value propositions of cloud-based phone system?
(a) Unified communication experience
Mobility, BYOD, work-from-home and real-time intuitive communication, among others, are key requirements which a business needs to adapt with to keep their staff and customers tied together even when they are physically apart. Thankfully, cloud based phone systems make it happen seamlessly as it provisions multiple communication channels including voice, data, and video.
(b) Reliability, resiliency, redundancy
Cloud based phone system being administered remotely by data centers relying on latest redundancy and backup architecture and design is immune to human-led intentional vulnerabilities and natural calamities. Hence, you can expect higher degree of service availability to uninterruptedly run your business operations.
(c) Easy to install, use, and troubleshoot
As there is no physical cabling akin to conventional phone system, setting up cloud based phone system doesn’t demand much technical expertise. Entire things are managed on the background by the vendor, and being a user, you just need to plug and use your phone devices. Phone functionalities are just a click away. Add what you want and discard that doesn’t interest you. Addition and removal of phone numbers and extensions is also quite simple. The term Troubleshooting has been removed from its dictionary as it hardly fails. Scalability and flexibility will keep you going smooth to embrace the changing business needs.
Choose the right cloud telephony vendor
So far you have concluded your requirements and VoIP solution, now it’s time to zero in on the right cloud telephony vendor. To get started, talk with different vendors offering cloud based business phone systems to companies that are similar to yours, in terms of nature and strength. Take note of their case studies and customer testimonials. Look for complaints, reviews and satisfaction index relevant to them across various online and offline media portals. Know about their upfront, monthly, annual or ongoing maintenance and support costs. Is there any lock-in p period? If yes, how long is the contract for? Will you be able to use your conventional telephone equipment with it? Do you have a service level agreement in place? Is there guarantee on call quality and availability? Does it have the capabilities to adjust with your changing business needs in future, say in 5 or 10 years down the line?
From adopting the best CRM software to choosing the most effective cloud contact center suite and then integrating both to drive operational efficiency abiding various compliance norms, including TCPA, or Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the path of getting started with a telemarking-based contact center and then deriving sustainable profit from it, is not without hackles. In the current blog discussion, Fonebell pursues the solutions that can help a telemarketing agency to increase the number of contacts, workforce productivity and ROI (return on investment), and check idle times.
Full Featured Automatic Dialer
Make sure that the chosen call center software or service is capable of filtering out contacts based on busy signals, DNC (Do not call registry), numbers not reachable, or numbers getting diverted towards fax and answering machines, and others. More talk-time with the right prospects will certainly help you to monetize the marketing opportunity. Such dialer software are often marketed with the predictive dialer tag, however, being a telemarketing agency, confirm the potential of the dialer system before making the investment with. It should check pauses between any outbound calls, as it diminishes the trust factor, and ends your effort in vain.
Effective dialer-CRM integration makes sure that every interaction between prospects or customers and telemarking executive is getting recorded. This helps in effective case follow-up for quick closure of deals as the later executive can learn as how far the progress was made till last interaction. He/she can also schedule the follow-up instance as per the prospects/customers’ preference.
Though the feature is explicitly considered to be the domain of inbound call centers, but it holds its significance in the context of telemarketing as well. This will help sales and marketing representatives to divert the calls of a prospect to next tier to improve his/her satisfaction level, and ultimately bring the case to a successful closure.
Graphical Queue Reports
Being the head of a telemarketing agency, it’s your onus to monitor the productivity of the workforce and take effective measures to drive it further to reach business objectives. Make sure that the call management software that you have presents details like: completed calls, hold time, average call length, agent productivity, and much more in a graphical way that can be easily understood and interpreted. It should convey business insights and trends on daily, weekly, or even hourly basis. It serves as great tools for proper staffing predictions for your call center as well.
Agent Call Recording
How your call center agents are pitching the products or service benefits? Are they following the standard protocols as required by your business and regulatory compliance? Yes, you should know it well. Make sure that the call management software leverages you to capture recording of calls based on agent name, extension, date, time, Caller-ID, DNIS and file size. Your quality audit team should get the details right on their computer speakers, or over the browser.
Besides recording calls, your quality team should be privileged to listen an active call on the fly. The feature must be flexible to let you assign permissions to different groups involved with barging calls in different queues. Apart from listening the calls they should be able to whisper active agents to ensure adherence of protocols.
Over 5 million businesses are using cloud computing services today. There is a huger demand for cloud computing service providers. What cloud computing is exactly? What are the benefits of cloud computing? How does cloud computing work? Find answers to all.
In a nutshell, “Cloud Computing“, is the on-demand delivery of scalable and elastic IT-enabled capabilities to end-users via the Internet against the favorable pay-as-you-go pricing concept. In terms of adoption, technology analyst firms to the likes of Gartner have predicted a bright future for it. Considering India as a prospect, Gartner is quite optimistic about the adoption of cloud computing services. Across all segments, cloud computing has secured 33.2 per cent of CAGR (compound annual growth rate) from 2012 through 2017. Grilling down to individual segments, it found that software as a service (SaaS) grew up by 34.4 per cent and infrastructure as a service (IaaS) with 39.8 per cent. Hence, cloud computing is likely to be the bulk of the IT spending in years to come.
How does it work? Cloud computing service providers host and maintain the entire set of hardware, network equipment and IT capabilities including servers, storage, databases and application services at their data centers, and end-users can access them easily through their Internet connected devices like tablets, smartphones and PCs from anywhere, anytime, after successful validation or authentication. Now, after understanding the infrastructure architecture and modus-operandi of cloud computing, you might have got that what sorts of benefits it would entail. Here is a brief snapshots of that.
Trade capital expense for variable expense
Cloud computing discards the need of owning and maintaining expensive data centers and servers. In lieu of making hefty IT investment to run their operations they can find the desired IT capacities and resources against an affordable subscription that could be payable monthly or annually. The crux of cloud technology adoption would be to lower the TCO (total cost of ownership), and let entrepreneurs have the flexibility to pay for what they need and when they need.
Benefit from massive economies of scale
Consider the simple economy. Bulk manufacturing is always profitable than small-scale ones and the rationale is simple as the total ownership of a manufacturer gets divided among more units, hence, per unit cost reduces drastically. In the context of cloud computing, providers are nothing but the bulk IT resource holders. Hence, they distribute IT capabilities or services at much lower cost than what would be possible if a client does it by itself.
Build capacity that you need
There is absolutely no bar in terms of capacity. Clients enjoy privilege to scale up and down the demand of cloud computing services as per the changing business needs. They can access as much or as little as they need, and without any prior information to the vendors.
Get the right speed and agility
End users can get uncompromised speed and agility to keep their business performance at peak. Moreover, addition, modification and abandonment of services are just a matter of few clicks, hence, they can access whatever they need anytime, and from anywhere to stay competent in the dynamic and ever challenging marketplace.
Say goodbye to data center maintenance
The onus of data center maintenance has shifted from clients to cloud computing service providers. Hence, entrepreneurs can have big savings, and more focus on their business processes and customers.
Your business is your world, and today the success of your world depends on the business communications systems that you have. Reckoning the significance of real-time communication and information sharing, presence of diversified business communication ecosystem, and digitally-empowered consumers, Fonebell presents an inclusive communication solution. It brings a universal platform that bridges workforce, partners and customers, and let them connect internally and externally in a quick and easy way.
Undeniably, such a business communication system is the need of the hour. See how Internet Protocol (IP)-based telephony and IVR systems can help a business to run smartly. See how people work together? And also how a business head can keep a control on all communication to better drive business objectives.
Welcome callers and divert them to respective departments based on their queries. Callers simply need to press certain numeric key-pad buttons to reach the right department, staff or person. Calls can be forwarded to off-site locations, and more as per business preference.
No organizations can be flat. Yes, people work in groups or departments, and even inside that there exist hierarchy and distinctions based on type of work or responsibilities they have. Hence, to connect and interconnect them efficiently, Fonebell presents flexible extension groups. A business administrator can bestow users with permissions like:
- Zone Paging/Intercom
- ACD – Record other’s queue calls
- ACD – View queue reports
- ACD – Agent login / logout
- Call Forwarding
- Check Voicemail
- Call Privacy (who’s talking to who)
- Block call “stealing”
- Record my calls
- Dozens more!
Whether it’s conducting group meetings, discussions or offering training or solutions, all can happen with Fonebell business communication system effortlessly. There is no cap on number of participants and their presence. Interestingly, the participants could be either your people or customers, or a mix of both.
Full Featured A.C.D.
Using A.C.D. (Automatic Call Distribution), call center operators can handle growing call volume and boost up workforce productivity significantly. They can route incoming calls to their agents the way they like to match business needs. For instance, the call can ring one agent/user at a time, ring user with fewer calls, ring least recently called users, ring in sequence, ring an agent randomly, or so on.
Hence, smart business telephone systems for business communications offered by Fonebell are instrumental in diminishing distances between people and stakeholders. Stay tuned to discover new innovative features.
Keeping performance at peak, meeting regulatory compliance and SLA (service level agreement), handling absenteeism, and more – the stereotype differs, but not the result. Business heads or administrators often juggle through these challenges to steer away their companies to predefined goals, and call center managers are no more exceptions. Struggling with such overheads? Stay glued with us, Fonebell presents a gamut of out-of-the-box cloud-hosted contact center services and IVR systems. Find a glimpse of them here.
Unlimited Call Queues Management
Products and services of a business vary and so do their customers’ concerns. Hence, routing them to different departments would help you improve the delivery mechanism. Restrict call volume and hold time, route calls efficiently, and provide real-time assistance to your agents to help them provide the right information to your callers. Hence, maximize first-call-resolution and customer satisfaction rates while reducing the overall operational cost.
Full Featured A.C.D.
The cloud-hosted A.C.D (Automatic Call Distribution) can route incoming calls to your users/agents in many different ways to match your business needs.
- Ring all — 1st to pickup gets the call.
- Ring one person at a time in order.
- Ring in order, with memory.
- Ring least recently called.
- Ring user with the fewest calls.
- Ring a random person.
Team work involves working with diversity. Individuals have their own strength and weakness, but being a manager your responsibility is to derive the best from each and lead the team successfully to meet business objectives. Fonebell knows it well, and offers skill-based routing feature. Assign each agent a priority, and your calls will get routed accordingly in the queue to your star performers and underperformers and everybody in between.
Graphical Queue Reports
Abandoned calls, disposed calls, average hold-time, average handling time, agent productivity, and much more – get a 360-degree graphical representation of all on a single dashboard. Track the status of call volume and call resolution on hourly, daily, weekly, monthly basis. This will help you to have the right staffing to ensure smooth delivery of services.
There is much more to be revealed. Browse through our contact center pricing and features to know more. Do share your suggestions to help us improve our products and services to better match your changing needs.
Cloud is pouring briskly, fortunately for good reasons. Yes, you heard it right. In India, cloud technology grew up by 32.2 per cent to hit $556.8 million in the just concluded year. S-a-a-S (Software as a Service) segment dominated the growth, followed by the I-a-a-S (Infrastructure as a Service). The former secured $220 million, while the latter was pegged at $78 million. However, many more milestones are yet to be achieved by it, as industry experts to the likes of Gartner still consider the cloud-based services market to be in infancy here in India. And watching the lead taken by the telecom services in terms of garnering IT investment volume (which currently hovers close to 50 per cent globally with worth of $ 1, 725 billion), we can say that cloud telephony will be the next big thing not just in India but on the global stage. Many companies are switching to cloud based applications for telephony services. Here are some benefits of cloud-based phone system.
Reduce TCO and enjoy quick setup
Cloud telephony services don’t ask for hundreds of thousands of upfront hardware equipment and technology setup investment. Early adopters say that as compared with an on-premise PBX, it saves 50 to 60 percent in the first year. With $25 a month per user or even lower cost, it also reduces the operating costs drastically. Hence, businesses can reallocate such investment in other business processes to innovate their products or services and gain advantage over competitors. Moreover, a business can be up and running with cloud-based phone system within minutes or hours as it just requires an activation from the service provider. Users have to just plug in their phone devices and configure the services over the Web-based console as per their business needs. The setting and configuration is pretty simple and can be done easily without having any IT expertise. With greater availability and improved responsiveness, cloud telephony services are becoming instrumental in increasing employee productivity, improving customer service, and lowering IT costs.
Unite multiple locations and enjoy scalability
Cloud telephony services are helping businesses to bring on their dispersed offices and mobile workforce on board. Greater collaboration eases information sharing across different processes and improves customer service. Adding more offices or stores in a chain doesn’t entail any problem in terms of collaboration, as cloud services are scalable and flexible. Office administrators can tie together multiple locations in minutes as they don’t have to solve the mystery of clumsy, complicated and expensive PBX.
Integrate mobile devices & BYOD
Cloud telephony is contributing significantly towards promoting BYOD and mobility aspects. This is helping businesses to drive employee productivity, as users are more competent and comfortable with their personal devices. Mobility has raised the level of collaboration as mobile workforce and staff can seamlessly connect with their on-premise counterparts and deliver services to customers as per their expectation. Likewise, being on-the-move, administrators can have better control on their peers. They can monitor entire operations remotely and provide guidance to their people to achieve business objectives.
Is growing business, exponential increase in sales volume, and hence the corresponding piling up customer records forcing your traditional contact management service go haywire? Are you finding it hard to respond to your partners and customers in a timely and precise manner? Are you witnessing customer dissatisfaction? Are you on the verge of losing revenue on account of it? If yes, consider these are caveats asking your attention. If you really care for your business, for your customers, for your partners and other stakeholders, take refuge of a responsive cloud-based small business contact management service.
Obviously, you can’t shrug your shoulders from it. Say thanks to IT. It has an effective solution to help you with effective contact management. The market is flooded with a continuum of small business contact management services. To find the right pick, go through the unbiased reviews of the features offered by best contact management software (services) of 2015. Feature names are mere an indication of what they do. Different vendors can name them differently. While zeroing in on a particular contact management solution, go by the functionalities instead, as the name could differ from one brand to another.
360-degree sales pipeline overview
It should present an overview of the sales channel and clearly show that how many customers approached for your product or service and what were the various actions taken by your various departments. What is the status of the leads received? Where are they stuck, if any? And for what reasons? With all this information on his/her finger tip, your sales manager can take the due action to ensure more customer acquisition and drive sales. He or she can have better understanding as what works and what not, and where improvement is required.
A particular sales cycle that worked for your counterpart can’t do the same magic for you. Companies differ and so should be the sales cycle. Hence, choose a contact management service which is customizable. And allows managers the flexibility to add custom fields and pipeline stages as and when they like. Remember, features may go out of date with time, hence turn off those and keep on inventing newer ones to give edge to your customer acquisition endeavor.
Customers are mobile, and so should be your contact management service. It should sync data effortlessly and provide authentication-based access to your people whether they are at home, work or on the move. It must provision a sharp and fluid user-interface to let them connect with customers and different processes over voice, email, chat, or video with just a tap/flip. This will help them receive and close leads and everything in between like having appointment or meetings, sending proposal and tracking their status in no time. Remember, customers want responsiveness and if you can deliver it, you can have success at your feet.
Integrations and add-ons
Contact management should work on real-time basis, and for that it must interact effortlessly with various cloud-based apps. For instance, a change in proposal letter, or sales pipeline should be cascaded across the various departments over the cloud to keep everybody on board. Likewise, people moving on the field may need help in terms of direction or location. Interestingly, with Google maps integrated with the service, they don’t need to worry about. Hence, collaboration enforced by real-time information would help your people to deliver services consistently and in the right way.