More and more companies switch from POTS (Plain Old Telephone System) to VoIP, because of the great saving opportunities and higher return on investment (ROI) it offers. However, there are many hidden costs to a VoIP implementation: beware and plan accordingly.
Hidden Cost #1 – Revamping Internal IT Infrastructure
VoIP is a real-time application that requires more resources than traditional email, HTML and databases. Companies switching over to VoIP have no choice but to make these improvements in the network systems and power supplies, because they are critical components.
- A loss of data packets sent over traditional IP environments is called “latency.”
- To have a conversation, the maximum delay can be no more than 150 milliseconds.
- VoIP works in real time and needs the lowest latency possible.
- LAN cabling needs to be replaced with gigabit Ethernet or a fiber backbone.
- Switches and routers need to be upgraded
- These costs are often very high and usually not included in the vendor’s estimate.
Power Supply Improvements
- Every device needs a reliable and uninterruptible power supply (UPS).
- Standard desk UPS’s will not suffice if the building doesn’t have backup generators.
- Some companies install separate power cabling for network components.
- These costs are usually not included in the vendor’s estimate.
These Improvements Do Have Hidden Benefits!
- Applications work better
- Webpages do not hang up
- Databases respond faster
- Users are able to move quickly from voice to video and use richer web applications
These improvements are essential and should be treated as mandatory!
Hidden Costs #2- Vulnerability and Security
The switch to VoIP can introduce unexpected risks into the phone system of a company. Small businesses are especially vulnerable, because they may not have the number of trained, qualified personnel that larger companies have. Smaller companies are also less resilient to any disruptions of business.
Most Common VoIP Threats
Confidentiality Threat – Calls could be eavesdropped upon and/or recorded and voicemail may be tampered with which could lead to the loss of sensitive information, corporate secrets and/or identity theft.
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