Multi-office or departmental organisations such as Universities typically have one common issue; communication. With both internal and external calls needed on a daily basis, companies that have a requirement for communication between the different offices (or locations) need a cost efficient means of facilitating this transmission of data.
One of the solutions that has been emerging for some time is VoIP (or “voice over IP), which is a means of sending and receiving calls over the internet. Although there is the ability to save substantial amounts of money on a VoIP phone system, the initial outlay of up hauling a current system can simply be too much for some people, which is where SIP trunking comes in.
A SIP (“session initiation protocol”) trunking solution allows an existing PBX to connect to the telephone infrastructure via the internet. Typically this means that the traditional telephone system that’s in place can be IP-enabled, making use of VoIP technology to send and receive calls over the internet. As mentioned earlier, the ongoing cost-saving ability of VoIP can be the perfect solution for multi-office organisations, and through the use of SIP trunking, this is a very efficient resolution.
How it Works
In multi-office/location organisations the amount of internal calls is typically much higher due to the need to communicate efficiently (without physically visiting or using email). Incoming calls need to be diverted to the appropriate locations, and a lot of individual connections are needed – with costs associated each time one of these dials out. The way VoIP works is that it sends and receives all calls via the internet, meaning the costs are greatly reduced, there is the flexibility to scale the network easily, and a host of call management features.
SIP trunking works by acting as a middle-man between an internet connection and a current phone system. Transferring voice data primarily over the internet rather than the PSTN, only a fraction of the traditional fees are associated with the IP-based connection.
SIP Trunking can be utilised as either an outbound (making calls), or an inbound and outbound (receiving and making calls) service. The former gives the benefit of direct lower call cost saving and increased outbound call volumes when required. The second can give both the former benefits plus both a technology advantage and a disaster recovery position as calls can be re-routed from the central SIP network.
For a multi-office organisation, this has a number of benefits:
- Eliminate the ISDN and analogue lines (and thus costs)
- Introduce a pay-for-what-you-need billing system
- Centralise the telephone system
- Increase call management capabilities (both internally and externally)
- Enhanced transferring capabilities
As mentioned above, through the reduction of ISDN and analogue lines, and with voice, video and data being transferred via the internet, substantial costs can be saved in comparison to a traditional telephone system. Particularly with large organisations (ie. multi-office/location) costs can be greatly reduced with the recurring costs of separate circuits being made redundant, DID (direct inward dials) being utilised to allow for multiple phone lines to increase call control, and long-distance or local access calls being much more cost effective.
Wondering how much can be saved with a SIP trunking solution? The University of Nottingham has reportedly saved £60,000 a year after a migration to VoIP utilising SIP trunking. Not bad at all.