TPrivate Branch Exchange (PBX) is a telephone system within an organization that switches thecall between users inside the said organization on local lines while allowing all users to share a certain number of external phone lines. The main purpose of PBX is to save the cost of wiring for each user to be connected to the main telephone company office. A hosted PBX is a cloud-based PBX system which can be accessed over an IP network. Hosted means that hardware PBX is hosted someplace else than the VoIP service is being used. This eliminates the need for a large investment and ongoing maintenance and training required by the traditional PBX. A hosted PBX provides a business with the ability to manage their phone systems with a user-friendly interface, on top of being managed by a hosted PBX provider, resulting in no IT or installation cost. These are just afew of the many reasons hosted PBX is growing in popularity among startups and medium-sized growing businesses. Hosted PBX is sometimes also referred to as Hosted VoIP.
While hosted PBX is a lot less costly than traditional PBX, because of no requirement of expensive and complex hardware or software – which in addition doesnot require further staff training and maintenance, it also has some much needed additional features. For example- On-hold music
Hosted PBX systems are fairly easy to setup, there are a few prerequisites that need to be covered before you can opt for it.
You have to have a temporary phone number for the porting process. If you already have one, you will have to remain with it until porting process is completed and the number is ported to your new PBX provider. However, if you are getting a new number, it is important that you inform others via an email chain or other similar methods. In this way, all your calls will be conveniently routed to your cell phones during the transition period, which is very brief might I add. But, if you cancel your service with the previous provider prior to the completion of thetransition period, then the number will no longer be yours to keep.
When you are switching from traditional phone lines to hosted PBX, organizing the call routings is one of the first that needs to get done. It means you will have to implement few certain rules for your calls. These rules include
- Options to activate voicemail and other features
- Directory setup
- Fax handling
- How the calls handled that are received after office timings
- Emergency numbers configuration
- Handling of two or more calls to the same number
After the hosted PBX is setup, you should review your bills for two months at least, to ensure that you are receiving and utilizing all the services you are paying for. First-month bill might include activation, setup and number porting fee, but the second-month bill should be a typical one without any added charges.