Ever wonder why Hosted PBX isn't sold by telcos? It's the new entrants to the voice game that are pushing Hosted PBX on to the business community.
Comcast is probably the closest thing to a CLEC that sells Hosted PBX; hence, the NGT acquisition.
Many CLEC's have morphed into tiny ILEC's, because getting to $1B in revenue means changes. The model for most of the CLEC's is the ILEC. It's unfortunate but true.
The sales force for most CLEC's has the plug-n-play mentality, which to me means that the sale is wrapped around replacement services. A PRI for a PRI or a SIP Trunk. POTS for a Dynamic T1. This is strictly a transaction.
Now try to shift that mentality over to IP Communications. Even selling collocation and managed services is a stretch because this isn't plug-and-play.
Collocation is a long sale about power, space, connectivity, and location. It's more of a real estate sale than a telecom transaction.
Managed services is a replacement sale, but you are selling the replacement of IT support staff. Not a truly telecom sale.
IP Communications is a different deal altogether. Why? The sales person has to know the product fairly well. She has to perform a consultative sale as the trusted advisor. As I wrote here, Hosted PBX can be a change in the way a small business operates. The work force can be mobile or virtual. The system can alter work flow. It can make collaboration easier. When there isn't a clear cut savings or the upfront hardware costs (CAPEX) are too high, the sales trigger will be about productivity gains and other intangible factors.
The other factors that may get in the way of CLEC Hosted PBX sales is the licensing, billing and implementation. But we'll save that for next time.