Businesses of different sizes have varied communications requirements for their business phone systems. For instance, some startups can usually do with a simple business phone as long as they can use it to make calls to prospects and potential funders. In addition, some small businesses have a limited number of calls to make and take every business day.
But as a business grows, its requirements for business phone systems may change. Team members may need to call up more leads and prospects. And so, if there’s only one phone with no extensions, team members would have to wait for the person on the phone to finish before they can make their calls. As such, larger businesses and enterprises have realized the need to get a business phone system such as Call Cowboy and other similar dialing platforms to meet their needs.
Here’s a brief article on how you can transform your phone into a business dialing platform.
What Is A Virtual Phone System
A virtual phone system or business dialing platform is a software application that allows you to make outgoing and incoming phone calls over your internet connection. Some of these software systems are cloud-based platforms. You can conveniently use them on your desktop computer, laptops, and even some mobile devices.
How To Set Up Your Business Dialing Platform
Select A Business Dialing Platform Or Virtual System
To transform your phone into a business dialing platform, the first thing you have to do would be to select the right platform or software system. There are numerous packages offered on the market, depending on the needs of your business. That said, there are no one-size-fits-all applications. You may have to check every system available to be thorough with your selection process.
Some dial platforms have different features and functionalities with increasing price points from the most basic ones to the next. Most of these are designed to meet the perceived needs of individuals, small businesses or professional practices, and enterprise-level operations.
For instance, some dialing platforms may offer free trial use of their systems for limited periods, while some may include a toll-free number. Others can even offer to give their customers a virtual phone number that can be used for every area code in the United States.
One of the best features of using a virtual phone system is that these applications have an Auto Dialer, which dials the numbers your team members need to call, thus saving you a lot of time.
Furthermore, some virtual phone platforms could give you a package that includes unlimited calls nationwide. You can even ask them to port in and configure your existing phone numbers. Through this, you can transform your existing phone into a business dialing platform.
Assign Phone Extensions
The next step in setting up your business dialing platform is to farm out the part assignments to your team. In this step, you will be assigning the available extensions on your platform to your team members. In most applications, you may do so by accessing the menu and adding new phone users.
After you have added a new phone user, you can now provide the extension number assigned to each respective team member and configure the settings so they can receive phone calls. Phone extensions are generally assigned to users within the same branch or enterprise. Through this, they can be reached separately, even though the inbound calls would be connected to the same trunkline number before being routed to the said extension.
Users with extension numbers can also dial the extensions of other users within their business, branch, or enterprise. Moreso, they are also able to call phone numbers outside their enterprise. However, some systems may have a limit on the number of extensions that can make outbound calls.
You can also configure how your phone system will direct the inbound calls that it receives. Your team members may then pick up the call from their desktop computers, laptops, desk phones, mobile phones, or other devices. One of the good things about most dialing platforms or virtual phone systems is that you can change the configurations and settings for each extension number anytime you need to do so. You can enable some users to have call forwarding, voicemail, and caller ID.
On another note, you can also disable these features for some extensions. The settings would depend on how you want them, and you can modify them according to your business needs.
Record And Set Up Your Phone Greeting
The third step in transforming your phone into a business dialing platform would be to record and set up the phone greeting of your trunkline number. Generally, this phone greeting is what people calling from outside would hear when they reach your number. In most applications, you can set up a greeting for all inbound calls regardless of the extension number that they want to contact. It is also called the auto-attendant of your phone.
In line with that, here are some options for setting up your phone greeting:
Use your browser to manage your greeting
In most business dialing platforms, you can set up and record your greeting from your browser. As systems have their user interface or dashboard, you can set up your phone greeting by selecting auto-attendants from the menu. It is done using the advanced routing functionalities of the dialing platform or phone system.
You can set up how calls will be routed within your branch network. You can create your auto-attendant and upload your recorded voice greeting from an existing file. Or perhaps you can make a new recording. You can then record as many custom greetings as you want up to the maximum number of recordings allowed by your business dialing platform or virtual phone system.
Use your phone to record a greeting
Another option would be to record a greeting using your desk phone. You can also modify your recordings using your desk phone. As such, the changes you make on these phones may also affect the recordings or greetings that inbound callers would hear, regardless if you set up your users and enabled them to pick up phone calls from their computers or mobile devices.
Most business applications have a procedure for setting up and recording greetings on the desk phone they provide to their customers. There can also be procedures for making changes to these, and they would usually come with the user manual. Some platforms may also provide support services for customers who might have questions on how to set up and record greetings.
For instance, here is a sample procedure for recording greetings on your desk phone:
Dial the number assigned for settings or recording greetings then press *
Press 1 to change the greetings or to record and save a new one.
Press 1 to change the greeting to the appropriate business hours.
Press 1 again to start recording the greeting. When the tone or beep stops, you can begin recording your greeting.
Press # after you’ve recorded the greeting or after it beeps again.
Start Making And Taking Calls
After you have set up and configured the extension numbers of your team members and recorded your greetings, you can now start using your new phone system as a business dialing platform.
When your virtual phone system has already been set up, you can make as many calls as you want, perhaps to all the leads and clients you want to reach. Furthermore, you can also take an unlimited number of inbound calls from customers who might be calling in with their queries or from existing clients who might need a support service with one of your products that they have already bought.
Some dialing platforms may come with a business phone app. It can enable you to manage your business dialing platform from your desktop computer or laptop without touching your physical desk phone every time you need to make a phone call or take an inbound call. You can also set up the call forwarding feature if you need to step away from your phone for a while and you don’t know if there would be anyone else in your office or business who can take the calls to your extension while you’re away.
Other virtual phone systems and platforms also have a mobile app version of their business phone app. Most of these mobile apps are downloadable. However, support for other mobile phone operating systems may differ widely from one dialing platform to another.
Configuring And Setting Up Other Features And Functionalities
Some of the business dialing platforms or virtual phone systems currently offered in the market have advanced features and functionalities beyond the basic dialing features common to all platforms. These features can include text messaging capabilities, call recording, and advanced video conferencing. These features could add greater power and reach to your business phone, as they can transform your phone into a powerful business dialing platform.
It might be ideal for larger enterprises with more complex business communication to add other options to their basic features and advanced functionalities. As small businesses grow and scale up their operations, some could opt to get local numbers for some departments or divisions, which receive a high volume of inbound calls every day.
Companies that use a lot of teleconferencing and video conferencing sessions may consider getting Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP). It is usually done by businesses or enterprises which receive a bulk or heavy volume of phone calls from their customers or clients. It is also used by some Contact Centers and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) offices. Some of their agents use VOIP desk phones and downloadable applications for the business phone system.
Essential Features Of Business Dialing Platform
Every business dialing platform or virtual phone system has its technology and set of basic and advanced features. There are features and functionalities which are almost common to all business dialing platforms. But there are also some which can only be found in a specific dialing platform. This is especially true when these features or functionalities are proprietary technology of the particular dialing platform or virtual phone system.
The unwritten sort of rule of thumb that you should keep in mind when you’re looking for a good dialing platform is that the more things that your dialing software can do, the better it is since this would give you more dialing and phone management capabilities.
That said, here are some essential features that you should look for in selecting a business dialing platform:
Seamless scalability and flexibility
Your business dialing platform should give you enough room to scale up as fast as you can be, based on the flow of your business growth. It shouldn’t disrupt your business operations when you scale up your dialing platform capabilities.
Robust analytics and KPIs
Consider looking for a business dialing platform provider with robust analytics and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It can enable you to monitor and evaluate whether you’re making the most of your dialing platform to create value for your company.
Accurate call transcriptions
The business dialing platform that you pick should have technology that can record accurate call transcriptions. It can be crucial if your business has a heavy volume of inbound and outbound calls to leads or customers. The call transcripts may serve as records of how the calls went.
Ability to take calls anywhere, anytime
With the emerging remote work culture, it would be best to select a dialing platform that can allow your team members to access phone calls anywhere and anytime.
Easy phone call routing setup
You may want to select a virtual phone system that won’t be too complicated to set up. It may be convenient for you and your team members if the steps on how to set it up aren’t that numerous or complex.
Dedicated customer support service
Select a phone dialing platform that is known and credible to provide a dedicated customer support service. In some cases, phone operations are bound to encounter issues and disruptions. It might be good to have customer support that you call for help anytime.
Nowadays, businesses can transform their simple office phones into business dialing platforms by getting virtual phone systems or business phone applications. These software systems can enable your business to have greater power and access phone calls conveniently. With the brief information above, you can be guided on what a virtual phone system is and how you can set it up.