Everyone buying Unified Communications (UC) phone systems these days is faced with the same issue, how to choose between a hosted and premise based PBX. This presents a daunting task for anyone trying to wade through the mountain of information available on the web. But choosing is simpler than you think if you focus on the real issues.
To help you with this Avid Systems covers the technical differences, common road blocks, and issue of company size.
A premise based UC PBX is located at the customer site. The customer has acquired the equipment and decided to make an investment in human capital to manage and operate it. It is important to note that in an environment with a premise based PBX; the customer does not look to the service provider for any material office features, as all of the features are delivered by the equipment.
With a hosted PBX, the only thing delivered to the customer premise is the phones. All of the brains of the system are at the hosted provider’s facilities. This differs from a traditional or IP-PBX where all of the equipment is onsite and the connection to the telephone network is via a T-1 or analogue line. So in the hosted model the service provider bares the responsibility of providing the service to all the devices. While in the IP-PBX model, the customer takes on the service provider role for all the devices including those in remote locations, which is the big difference between these two offerings.
Why business owners often have a hard time deciding which system to go with is because they haven’t internalized what they consider to be important. I don’t think it’s really about technology. I don’t think it’s always about cost. They have to decide if they ultimately want to be responsible and want to grow an IT infrastructure for their telecommunications needs. Or is it more useful for them, because it’s not necessarily where their expertise resides, to take a look at outsourcing that capability and leveraging the expertise of someone else? Business owners should understand what role they want to play in providing their telecommunication services.
They need to determine if they already have somebody who is competent or a partner such as Nortec to support that equipment. I think the biggest issue is that when people start thinking phone system, they are thinking about it on a very simple level, you know, make a call and receive a call. From that standpoint, IP-PBX and hosted PBX look like very similar products. But the difference really has to do with how much equipment you are buying upfront and who is supporting it. Also, in the case of employees working remotely, I think it effects which solution is going to be a better choice.
Business owners need to realize that the capabilities of their technology have an impact on their business. How good are the phone systems business applications? How good is the reporting? These are the things business owners need to consider when making a purchase.
Avid Systems will deliver a complete solution with Video Conferencing and Switching & Routing.