Deciding on a communications solution for your business used to be simple. There were a limited number of PBX options since Mitel, ShoreTel and Avaya were the three prominent paths. But in recent years, cloud PBX rose in popularity with the emergence of RingCentral and other cloud providers, which provided a unified platform for calls, messaging and video while saying goodbye to landlines. It was a great fit for some industries, but others simply weren’t getting excited about saying goodbye to their on-prem hardware.
Now the communications industry is starting to realize that there’s a viable third option delivering the best of both worlds- a hybrid PBX deployment that incorporates both fixed and cloud connectivity.
Why? As the business sector evolves and embraces new productivity apps and other technologies, there’s simply no longer a one-size-fits all communications platform that solves every challenge for every brand. Hybrid PBX makes a lot of sense for several different reasons; here are a few more reasons to consider this path:
Forget About the Rip & Replace PBX Scenario
Companies that have already invested heavily in their premise-based PBX stacks may not be ready to jump straight into the cloud, even though they do find facets like multichannel and omnichannel appealing. What business leaders are realizing is that this doesn’t have to be an either/or scenario anymore- they can have an on-premise headquarters or manufacturing facility while also deploying a cloud contact center and other office tools for their diversified workforce.
The beautiful thing about a hybrid communications deployment is that it allows you to take a tiered approach to focus on cloud for areas of immediate need, seeing how it integrates with your existing technology stack and keeping premise-based lines with internal extensions in-tact. This also lowers the risk for business leaders since they have more control over deciding on functionality and 3rd party applications over time, while also making sure that they have the right resources, staff and outside consulting in place.
The “New Normal” in Business Communications
As business leaders are navigating out of the COVID pandemic and focusing on their long-term communications strategies, they are realizing that having certain employees work from home would make financial sense as a permanent solution. While they may have found temporary make-shift applications to manage remote users, the process is difficult to scale with an on-premise solution due to hardware requirements and other IT factors. Cloud communication is ideal for these situations.
On the other hand, some industries and multi-location businesses still benefit from fixed internal calling through IP-based network extensions that don’t require a direct phone number. Significant investment was made in these solutions and for many larger companies, these assets have not fully depreciated. A hybrid approach better fits the new normal in business communications since it is optimized for a variety of changing working conditions.
Backing Up Communications on Mission-Critical Lines
Manufacturers, logistical providers and other industries are heavily reliant on technology to keep their supply chains optimized. It’s often not an option to shut down production lines, which is why having a backup source of communications can make all the difference in meeting quotas. Deploying a hybrid PBX model utilizes the combination of existing landlines and the reliability of cloud communications with VOIP protocols to keep phones ringing even during power outages.
The same logic applies for any areas where fixed phone lines are essential such as lobbies, elevators or other mission critical areas of your business. A popular saying in the telecommunications industry is that ‘people benefit from softphones while places benefit from hard phones.’ The most streamlined way to achieve that balance efficiently is through a hybrid deployment.
Maximizing Financial Investments on Your Current PBX
The move to cloud also includes a number of other important considerations that may influence whether a standard rollout or a phased hybrid approach makes the most sense. Besides physical equipment, you may still have an active support agreement in place with a vendor or a support partner that does not include an early termination clause. There may also have other peripheral investments supporting your PBX infrastructure to consider as well.
While these types of financial considerations may feel like barriers to cloud entry, they are actually a big opportunity to maximize your ROI on premise-based hardware while also meeting the modern needs of an evolving mobile workforce. That could mean enhancing internal communications with modern features
like chat, video and file sharing from any location or implementing a cloud contact center to better service customers.
That’s the beauty of choosing a hybrid PBX solution with a staged approach- it delivers enhanced collaboration and communications features today while still maximizing the value of your existing technology investments. Contact Converged Technology Professionals today to see if a hybrid PBX deployment makes sense for your brand.
If you want to learn more about hybrid PBX deployments or if you want see what it would take to add the cloud on top of your current on-prem PBX system, contact us today!
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