The phones that you use to answer business calls are the most essential element and most valuable point-of-contact you have with your customers. Most of the time, you can pretty much set it and forget it, but then there are also those times when changes need to be made.
That’s when you need a system that makes it easy to change up the configuration while keeping the calls coming in without interruption. These steps will give you a simple roadmap for managing your forwarding phones as part of a virtual phone system.
1. Make sure your phones are in excellent working order.
Find out every person, or every phone that will be taking calls, and then do some testing. Go through each phone that will be on the forwarding list with your virtual system; then, do a series of tests to make sure there will be no conflicts or issues when you go live.
Check each device, itself, for any functionality or hardware problems, and if possible, be sure that they are the latest models (more on this later). Once you’ve checked the actual devices, place some incoming and outgoing test calls to see if there are any connectivity issues.
The vast majority of connectivity issues and dropped calls stem from the forwarding phone’s network, not your virtual provider. This is why it’s essential to test all of your existing phones.
2. Be sure your forwarding phones don’t ring when they shouldn’t.
You most likely have certain daily hours of operation for your business, and especially if your employees are using their personal phones to take business calls, it’s important that their phones aren’t ringing around the clock.
Talkroute provides an Hours of Operation feature that lets you set your hours for each day from your online control panel, but if you don’t have that feature, then you’ll need to remember to manually turn off each forwarding phone at the right time.
3. Automate call forwarding schedules when possible.
One dilemma that you may run into is different schedules for each of your employees or multiple businesses running on your phone system which do not operate at the same time. That can be a real challenge if you aren’t set up for it.
To remedy that problem, Talkroute added a feature called Scheduled Forwarding, which allows you to automate frequent daily schedule changes. Using scheduled forwarding, you can create individual custom schedules for each of your forwarding phones to allow them to all run independently of each other or in tandem as needed.
4. Use the right forwarding strategy.
Your forwarding strategy involves a few different things, and one of those things is whether or not you will utilize a sequenced routing setup. With a Talkroute system, you can choose between either a Ring in Sequence or Ring All strategy.
You can ring each of your forwarding phones in a specific order, one after the other, or you can ring all of your phones at the same time, and the first to answer gets the call. Either way is effective, and one strategy or the other will work better for you depending on how your business is structured.
5. Utilize the newest hardware and the latest versions.
Make your life a lot easier by getting the newest models of your cell phones, the latest desk phone options, and even the best infrastructure whenever possible. When forwarding business calls to your phones with a virtual PBX, outdated or faulty devices are always going to be a problem waiting to happen.
Getting the newest possible equipment just eliminates one more thing that you have to worry about. Most notably with cell phones, if used for business calls, they have to be the latest models because you will need the newest version of the mobile dialing app used by your virtual service.
It never hurts to have the most up-to-date equipment for your business, and this is especially true for your phones.
Stephanie is the Marketing Director at Talkroute and has been featured in Forbes, Inc, and Entrepreneur as a leading authority on business and telecommunications.
Stephanie is also the chief editor and contributing author for the Talkroute blog helping more than 100k entrepreneurs to start, run, and grow their businesses.