Replacing Your Office Phone System to Increase Business Resilience

The biggest change in the history of the UK telephone network
February 21, 2019

Picture a busy day in the office. Marketing is doing its job perfectly and landed a prime spot on a popular news site with a celebrity endorsement. You’re excited that all your hard work, building your business from scratch and overcoming so many obstacles along the way is about to pay off. Then the phones start to ring. First one, then two, then three, then… they stop.

Resilience is often talked about when you take out any contract with a provider, but you do notice when it’s not there and in that instance, it isn’t a sudden realisation but a heartbreaking shock that hundreds of thousands of pounds could be slipping away. Any good resilience plan will come into service automatically if they are ever required, so you don’t miss a moment of business no matter the hour.

 

It is a fact that at some point IT equipment will fail. Over the last 20 years we have seen “the unexpected” and the “statistically unlikely” many many times. Just look at the list of causes of random Internet failures we have seen:

Fires in government grade data centres; Cleaners unplugging the comms rack to vacuum; Rodents chewing through cables; Water ingress in manholes; Interference from fluorescent lights; Routers overheating when a desk lamp is switched on; Cars driving into the large green Openreach cabinets; Gardeners strimming through telecoms cables; Flash flooding with water 10 feet deep; Coffee in the server PC keyboard; thieves cutting and stealing copper cable. Mains trips going in areas that had been bricked over; Faulty comms cables that route indirectly via an abandoned property next door; Phone lines being wrongly terminated by another carrier transposing digits.

Yes, all of these events above have happened to our customers over the years and therefore the list of “the unexpected” is probably infinite.

Take a quick look at the four distinct layers of Cloud Telephony and all of the parts of the connectivity that make it work.

123Telecom offer resilience at the “Customer Premises”  and “UK Data Network” layers by installing multiple broadband data services with automatic failover.

123Telecom deliver resilience as standard at the “Telephony Exchange” and “Telephone Access” layers by deploying multiple Broadsoft exchange servers in different locations with multiple connections to the worldwide telephone carrier networks.

Multiple broadband connections are one of the key ways in which you can avoid being stranded far away from your clients. They enhance your voice phone resilience, your Internet resilience and aren’t limited to a certain type. Multiple Broadband Connections stem from Fibre Broadband, Leaded Lines, ADSL2+ Broadband, 4G Backup Sim Service (Subject to location) and Air Broadband which we offer in 6 major UK city centres.

In addition to all the resilience built into our Cloud Telephony solution, 123Telecom also offer a “back-stop” divert feature. If for any reason your desk phones cannot communicate with the 123Telephone Cloud Telephony exchange, they are marked as “offline” within 60 seconds. Any inbound calls are destined for an offline handset, they are automatically re-routed to another destination, such as mobile phones or an alternative extension/office.

Enough about resilience and failures. Let’s look at capacity and overflow routing…

Whilst our Cloud Telephony can infinitely stack inbound calls in a queue, most customers choose to define “Auto-Divert-On-Busy” rules. This may be as simple as a colleague or VoiceMail system taking your call, or it may be a complex route for all inbound calls to another UK or offshore team for “overflow” call handling.

The chosen overflow route can vary based on time-of-day or day-of-week, whilst smaller companies may choose to Overflow-Route to an external call answering service, thus ensuring the caller always reaches a professional human voice without waiting.

So, now all the overflow is being dealt with, clients are happy and the phones are singing!

The best part of the 123Telecom Cloud Telephony resilience strategy is that it is all done without the need for expensive hardware maintenance or support contracts.

It’s simply something we just do for our clients!

In summary, the 123Telecom Cloud Telephony platform is inherently built for resilience in multiple data centres. You can rest assured that any unexpected event or sharp increase of call volumes will be handled correctly and efficiently! These resilience plans work as a “Just in Case” scenario, but we all know Murphy’s law: If something can go wrong, it will go wrong!

If you would like to know more about Multiple Broadband Connections, Auto-Diverts and Busy-Overflows,  please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

I’m happy to discuss how 123Telecom can increase the resilience of your business.

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