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For all of the benefits of cloud phone solutions (and there are many, including scalability, flexibility, and mobility), there’s no avoiding the fact that many people remain somewhat skeptical of the cloud. Typically, those business leaders’ concerns revolve around a handful of key issues: reliability, security, control, and risk. The truth, however, is world-class cloud phone solutions have largely eliminated those concerns, turning them into myth more than reality. Below, we’ll cover each fear and explain why the very best phone solutions give their customers a clear advantage rather than expose them to risk.

Fear #1: Cloud phone solutions are unreliable

The last thing any business needs is its phone system to go down when the sales team is working on a big deal or customers’ are trying to call in with questions. By using an on-premises phone solution, most executives believe they can avoid this problem altogether.  Why reliability isn’t a concern: Today, world-class cloud phone solutions have built-in redundancy and reliability at every level — from the circuit, to the data center, to the phones and the many different carriers. Whether it’s a catastrophic event or simply a downed circuit, the best cloud phone solutions have methods in place to proactively deal with issues before they have a chance to impact your business and are capable of surviving just about anything.

Fear #2: The cloud isn’t secure

When most executives consider switching to a cloud based phone solution, they initially start to picture everything that could go wrong. Outsiders could steal a phone and use it to hack into their network. Someone might listen in on their calls. And the biggest worry of all: Someone may tap into the system to make international calls, which would cost the business dearly. Why security isn’t a concern: Sophisticated cloud phone solutions have firmware built into their phones that have unique digital signatures. These signatures can’t be re-written, which means nobody outside the network can hack the system to place, listen to, or disrupt calls. Additionally, they use SIP to encrypt signaling information. This means hackers can’t get authentication information from the call signaling to make their own calls or disrupt the VoIP service of the call.

Fear #3: Surrendering system control to someone outside the business

If something goes wrong with an in-house phone system, it’s usually the IT manager’s job to rectify the situation. Most IT managers like it that way because they can make changes when and how they choose, and proactively manage issues as they arise. Why control isn’t a concern: While it might seem like a good thing to have total control over your phone system, passing off phone system management to a trusted third-party provider can actually save you — and your business — a significant amount of time. World-class cloud phone solutions give you the option to have total ownership over the phone system or to offload every step of phone system management to someone you trust. This means you can still manage tasks like adding new users, restricting access, or viewing call flow in real-time. If you’d rather not do those things, leading cloud system providers also offer exceptional total management support.

Fear #4: Am I making a bad decision?

This one is rather simple, but it’s a very real concern for many managers and executives. After all, if they make the decision to move their phone solutions to the cloud and it fails, then their reputation (and maybe their job) could be on the line.  Why failure isn’t a concern: Typically, companies approach cloud phone solutions with a misconception that a hosted solution will save them money, so they look for low-cost providers. This mistake is what often leads to failure. While it’s true that world-class cloud phone solutions won’t necessarily save you money, they will increase staff productivity, deliver deeper business intelligence, protect revenue streams, and ensure that you don’t lose your job over the decision to invest in them. So maybe world-class cloud phone solutions do save you money – in ways you didn’t anticipate.

Feeling better about the cloud?

Truth is, all of the concerns above are legitimate — but only if you opt for a budget cloud phone solution without an established track record. Simply put, those low-cost providers aren’t able to deliver the features that businesses require. A world-class cloud phone solution, on the other hand, will provide everything your company needs (security, reliability, and control) and countless other features that make it simple to extract immeasurable long-term value.

In the 21st century, work is no longer a place you go, but a thing you do.  That’s the nature of the changing work place.  And your phone system needs to work with you – in multiple locations, with a mobile and growing staff, and a customer that demands high quality communications.  You do more.  Your phone system needs to support you, not hinder you. As your business changes and grows, you’re likely hiring employees that will work remotely and flexibly.  You may have sales people who telecommute, consultants who are in the field or staff who work in remote offices.  You might be hiring millennials that expect to work with greater flexibility.  You are creating your workplace to meet the changing demands of your employees and your customers. In fact, there are some estimates that up to half of workforce’s will be working outside of traditional offices by 2020.  And, if you’re trying to attract millennials to your staff, flexibility is key to them wanting to work for you.

Will Your Current Phone System Support this Changing Work Environment?

Today’s organizations must find ways to empower all of their employees to work effectively and efficiently from any location at any time. Thankfully, cloud technology is making this kind of flexibility a reality — allowing employees to access virtually any file, application, network, or communication service from any place with a secure Internet connection. With a cloud phone system, you can hire staff wherever and whenever you need them, and ensure they will be able to connect consistently and professionally.

 Meet Your Employees Where They Are

Cloud phone systems allow team members to receive company calls, access corporate voicemail, and setup virtual conferences from a basic Internet connection.  When employees step out of the office, calls can be forwarded and certain features can be accessed from their cell phone Traditional phone systems, on the other hand, often hinder remote workers’ communication effectiveness because of their limited mobile capabilities. This often results in lost money, lost productivity, and big headaches. Even worse, businesses often pay more for traditional phone systems in the form of equipment maintenance and outages. Unified communication systems create an overall user experience that makes people feel like an effective part of the team, wherever they are.  At the end of the day, that’s good for your team, your company, and, most importantly, your customers. If you want to unify your communications system with your business, employees and customers, then it might be time to consider making a change to the cloud.