4 Tips for Building the Right VoIP Infrastructure for Your Business
Phone systems that run on a private branch exchange (PBX) are isolated from the businesses data network. Voice communications, in these environments, are run through their own infrastructure. Voice over IP (VoIP) communications are completely different in that they rely on the existing data network to transmit voice packets. Technically, VoIP services can run over an existing computer with no additional infrastructure needed; this is not a reality of IP telephony. To be a true replacement for a PBX solution and harness all the available features of VoIP, you need some additional pieces to build the infrastructure.
Tip 1: Determine Your SOA
Your service-oriented architecture (SOA) helps determine the level of integration between your organization’s enterprise communications and the business processes and applications in use. Mark Cortner, senior analyst for Burton Group Network and Telecom Strategies explains, “The SOA-based platform will facilitate the extension of communications activities and information to business processes, which are commonly known as communications-enabled business processes (CEBP).”
Tip 2: Choose the Right IP Gateway
Originally used to adapt the VoIP system to analog voice, these components have come a long way in helping deliver services to users no matter where they are located. Bringing video and data to VoIP users, the IP gateway serves as the bridge that connects your solution to everyone outside your network. For any organization that wishes to use all the tools included in its unified communications (UC) solution across a wide area network or to remote workers, this is a must have.
Tip 3: Be Redundant
When thinking of redundancy in the network, old timers immediately think of RAID systems to ensure data redundancy or multiple domain controllers to ensure that login credentials and their rights and privileges are always accessible. Nowadays, redundancy is built into just about everything that is considered business critical, and your communications system should be as well. Make sure the servers, switches, and other essential parts of your VoIP infrastructure are able to seamlessly switch over to their backup components if the primary ones should fail. Building redundancy into your network is not enough. Make sure to frequently test your processes and equipment to ensure they are ready to take over in the event of a failure.
Tip 4: Plan for Mobile
One of the most important features of a VoIP solution is the ability to give mobile users access to their phone system through an app on their devices. They can make calls, receive calls, and use messaging, and even video conferencing, directly from their mobile devices.
Introducing mobile components into the network does require planning and security. When making mobile VoIP part of your UC, make sure you take the proper steps to ready your infrastructure for smartphones and tablets.
VoIP services may be limited to voice alone in some organizations; however, they should never be thought of as simply a phone service. With the many features and services VoIP allows and the ability to provide connectivity to remote workers, business applications, and mobile devices, it truly offers a way to keep a business completely connected. Like any tool, proper planning is an essential part of a successful implementation. These four tips should help you and your business better prepare for VoIP and the hurdles you may face.
If you would like a free site survey and consultation on your telecommunication choices please feel free to contact us at (210) 402 5455 x 103