Archive for February, 2011

 

The purpose of business telecoms

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

If you are researching business telecoms on the internet, you may find extensive and extremely complicated descriptions of the purposes it serves and the benefits it may deliver.

Valid as many of these are, there is an underlying and easily expressed truth.

That is - business telecoms exist to help you win.

In some areas of modern society, such a hard-nosed expression may seem a little out of step with some of the prevailing views relating to modern business culture.

However, if you are in business, you probably know that on a day-to-day basis you are fighting to:

  • survive;
  • prosper.

If you do not win those two battles, then to put bluntly, your business is finished.

From our experience, we know only too well how having inadequate business telecommunications support may, at best, hold you back in your fight to survive and prosper. In some cases, it may even prove to be the factor that makes the difference between the success or otherwise of your business.

Why?

Starting from the 1980s, telecommunications have become key to modern business activities. Now in the 21st century, if you are unable to participate in the modern telecommunications environment, you will be at a serious competitive disadvantage.

Even if you personally are not entirely convinced about modern business and information systems, you can be sure that many of your clients will be.

They will be increasingly approached by your competitors that are using modern systems and when they see the benefits they can obtain from them, you may find that quite a few are suddenly no longer your clients.

Today it is necessary for your business telecoms to support both your business processes and your interactions with the outside world - including your customers. They also have to do that in a predictable and reliable fashion, as a phone system that is not up-and-running is of little use to anyone.

There are, therefore, two questions that you may need to ask yourself:

  • are your systems capable of providing you with the business functions you need in order to win through;
  • are they capable of doing so in a robust and reliable fashion or are they, effectively, held together with string and sticky tape?

It may not be possible for you to easily and objectively answer those types of questions - that is where we come in.

Using our extensive expertise of telephone systems and small businesses, we can help you identify where you may be able to get advantage by changing or upgrading your existing telecoms infrastructure.

It typically doesn't take long to do so and at the end of a quick review, you may find that you have a clearer idea of the potential for business telecoms in your small company, as well as be pleasantly surprised at how cost-effective this exercise could be!

The South East Business Show

Friday, February 18th, 2011

We will be exhibiting at the South East Business Show on Friday 25th March 2011 located at the Copthorne Hotel, Effingham, Gatwick.
10am – 3pm

There will be over a 100 exhibitors so why not come along and meet some new contacts, seek some advice or simply gain some new ideas.

Telcare will be on stand 52, we would love you to come and say hello.

Directions
From M23 exit at Junction 10, taking A264 towards East Grinstead. At the first roundabout take the 2nd exit straight ahead to remain on the A264. At the second roundabout take first exit on to the B2028 and the hotel is on your right. The postcode is RH10 3EU

For a map go to www.b2bsoutheast.com

February Fun

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

2011 seems to be racing by, everyone seems to be busy so it is great to have the opportunity to stop every now and again and take a moment to relax and catch up. That’s exactly what the Telcare team did earlier this month when we all got together for the Telcare Curry Night.

One of the enjoyable aspects of our job is meeting so many different people, so it is always fun to hear who has been where. Just recently the team have been all over the place including visits to a Convent in Essex, a model agency in a converted chapel in the Hertfordshire countryside, a beautiful residential property in Paris but our favourite story was the recent case of mistaken identity.

We have been working recently at Crawley Town Football Club. Now those of you that are football savvy will know that Crawley Town Football Club have managed to reach their way to the fifth round of the FA Cup. A feat only 5 other non-league teams have achieved since the Second World War. The excitement increased when they found that they would be playing Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sat 19th February. As you can imagine the scene at Crawley Town FC has been buzzing and it has been an interesting time to work there, but the highlight for Nick was when he needed more cable from his car. He exited the side entrance of the club only to be met by a Sky Sports Film Crew, who proceeded to film his every move. Eventually the crew realised that the guy in the Telcare shirt carrying cable probably wasn’t who they thought he was, but it certainly made Nick’s day.

The benefits of a modern small business phone system

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

When speaking of a small business phone system, what may come to mind is an image of a moderate size office with 10 to 20 people in it.

In fact, a small business phone system may consist of as little as two extensions that may both be used by a single-person business.

The image of a small business also being busy in buying and selling things to people or dealing with large-scale administration may also be misleading.

Schools’ and colleges’ telephone systems

Take, for example, a school or college. Even a relatively small establishment may have multiple classrooms, meeting rooms, assembly points and staff rooms etc.

For a number of reasons, not least of which may be student and staff safety, it may be important for there to be ready access to telephone extensions wherever you may be in the building.

Telephone systems for care homes

Another example where a small business telephone system may be essential might be a care home for the elderly or other such facility. If the facility has elderly people that are in need of care and potentially urgent assistance, then its phone system might be at the core of its internal and external communication.

In any such establishment where professional activities are being conducted, irrespective of their nature, having a communications facility may probably be seen as being imperative.

Of course, it isn't just a question of having a small business phone system. The key word in the title of this article is ’modern’.

We would never advocate replacing a system simply for the sake of it, however, you may have to face the perhaps unpleasant reality that your existing system is not only antiquated but it is no longer fit for purpose.

For example, if a student emergency arose, it may be potentially disastrous for you to find that you cannot easily communicate with first aid or emergency services simply because you system happens to be ‘down’ at that particular point.

The extent to which old and potentially non-standard business telephone systems can be ‘patched up’ may be limited - and it may also prove to be highly cost ineffective to keep trying to do so.

For any establishment, however small, the cost of a new robust and resilient business phone system from a major global manufacturer, such as Siemens telephone systems, may prove to be far lower than imagined.

Knowing that you have a modern small business phone system in place to enable you both to run your operations as efficiently as possible and to cope with any emergencies that may arise, might be something that will help you sleep a little more easily at night!

Installing an office telephone system

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

Installing an office telephone system should be relatively straightforward, providing:

  • you have selected a modern and fully standardised system from a recognised, reputable provider (for example, Siemens business telephone systems);
  • you are using an experienced telephone systems installer, such as ourselves.

Assuming both of those things are in place, here are a few useful tips that may help you make the process even speedier and smoother.

Plan the installation for your quiet business periods

If you are in a crisis, then you may have to take any opportunity you can to install your new system.

However, if that is not the case, it may make far more sense to plan the installation and cutover for a date and time when your business is normally at its quietest.

Perhaps that is a Saturday, the lunchtime period or any time where your business demand is at a lower level.

Allocate a systems administrator

Although we pride ourselves on providing first class post-installation support, it may be a good idea to make someone in your location responsible for the basics of system administration and perhaps minor issue resolution.

This may take a little training and familiarisation and we will be happy to advise further on this.

Invest in training

A modern office telephone system, even the basic entry-level models, can be very powerful and sophisticated systems that are capable of delivering major business advantage to your company or organisation.

To get the best out of them, however, you will need to find time for yourself and your colleagues to get to know the system and its capabilities. That's because it may be difficult to get the most out of the facilities of your system unless you know they exist!

Think about your office environment

In many modern office buildings, it is typically relatively easy to safely run the cables of an office telephone system through ducting and behind partitions etc.

If you are occupying premises that are old and unmodernised (e.g. some types of listed building) cable runs and safety may be more of a challenge.

Not only is it commonsense but also various health and safety regulations may restrict the way that cables can be run around the office where it would compromise personal safety.

Of course, we are fully conversant with these health and safety laws and will ensure we understand the cabling requirements of the system and how this may or may not affect your office premises.

Summary

The typical office telephone system is installed without any major concerns. Taking a few of the above steps - or by using a professional telephone systems installation and maintenance service such as ours - may help ensure that this is the case in your office.