Here is a great article titled IP Telephony for Small Business: When Failure Is Not an Option
The article is a good read because it points out questions worth asking such as:
- What are the business goals of considering an IP telephony system – improved services, decreased costs, integrated network, for example?
- What services will employees need today and in the future?
- What type of training will be necessary to ensure employees use the system as effectively as possible?
- Can the existing data network handle the increased bandwidth that are required from an IP telephony system?
Furthermore it discusses some of the approaches you can take.
- Hybrid – An IP card is attached to an existing PBX and the user receives a IP phone. This approach allows the user to get phone calls over an IP phone, but not the other services available through IP telephony.
- Island – A complete IP-based system is implemented, but only at one facility or one department. This scenario enables the “lucky” group to receive all the benefits of IP telephony, but their colleagues miss out. And, this approach taxes the resources of the company’s IT staff, since they are now maintaining a new system on top of existing systems.
- All IP – This approach includes removing the PSTN system and implementing a complete IP telephony system across the entire small business.
Why is this important? The largest market for IP PBXs is the small business segment yet ironically this group is the least advised on how to implement VoIP solutions. Content such as this article is a step in the right direction.