Sunday, December 5, 2010

Useful Phone System Features

Choosing the right office phone system can be difficult. Not only are there lots of phone system providers but, there are also lots of systems with various features to choose from. A company may choose one over the other due to certain features missing from another system. That feature can be something simple like allowing a user to send an announcement over a speakerphone or rather it can be complex like a customizable answering rule that can redirect calls using the an ACD (Auto-Call Distributor). Whichever features are required what is important is that it can provide the business with an efficient and reliable communication.

Below is a list of some phone system features a sales representative would be using:
  • Answering Rules – provides enhancements to the call forwarding feature.
  • Automated Attendant – eliminates the need to hire a human operator since it can handle and manage inbound calls.
  • Call Blocking or Screening – identify and filters unwanted telephone numbers from calling.
  • Call Forwarding – redirect a call to another number or extension.
  • Call Logs – detailed communication logs.
  • Call Transfer – provides a way for the user to transfer an ongoing call to another number.
  • Click to Call – a website feature that allows users to freely connect to the business by phone.
  • Custom Greetings – allows playing of specific greetings for every caller.
  • Dial by Name Directory – a menu system that enables callers to easily reach the appropriate contact.
  • Extensions – extra lines that can be added to a phone system.
  • Fax On-Demand – a system that can allow customer or callers to retrieve a copy of a document using a fax machine.
  • Internet Fax – a green and cheap alternative to a fax machine.
  • Local Number – ordinary number based on location or area. A provider may offer either this number or a toll free number with their phone system.
  • Message Alerts – a notification that is sent via SMS or e-mail whenever new voicemail messages or faxes are received.
  • Message On-Hold – plays messages or announcements to a caller that is put on hold.
  • Music On-Hold – plays background music when a caller is put on hold.
  • Real Time Call Controller – a desktop application for managing calls.
  • Toll Free Number – a special phone number that allow callers to contact the business free of charge.
  • Unlimited Calling – some providers may offer either unlimited calls for inbound, outbound or both.
  • Voicemail – provide callers with a way to leave a message when their call is unattended.
  • VoIP Phones – are phone units that may be included along with the telephone system.

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