You’ve decided it’s time to upgrade to a new communications solution either because your private branch exchange (PBX) is limiting your growth objectives or because your contract is up for renewal and it’s simply a good time to switch. Your Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) migration will be easier than installing an on-site system, but there are still some steps you should take to ensure it’s a success.
Step One: Prep Your Infrastructure: When transitioning to VoIP, your communications will rely heavily on the quality and speed of your network. It’s important to test your network performance against the specifications of your VoIP solution and look for areas where you might encounter congestion. You should also enact Quality of Service (QoS) policies that ensure that voice calls receive priority over, say, an email transmission.
Another foundational requirement for VoIP migration is access to the public-switched telephone network (PSTN), and you may want to utilize session initiation protocol (SIP) technology to transport voice data directly to the PSTN carrier.
You’ll also need to evaluate whether your desk phones are equipped for VoIP, including determining how they’ll receive power to support VoIP. In many cases, it makes sense to access power by utilizing Power over Ethernet.
Step Two: Consider a Hybrid Approach: Some enterprises find it beneficial to approach VoIP migration in a phased process. It might make sense to first migrate low-priority outbound calls to determine any performance issues that may need attention. Some use a hybrid deployment in order to fully test performance and quality before migrating.
Hybrid solutions are also a good approach when a business wants to use a legacy system and build VoIP capabilities as an add-on. This approach allows organizations to transition to unified communications as a service (UCaaS) one step at a time. Users retain analog handsets and calls are placed through the IP network. This solution also fits well when a company has particular features on a legacy system that aren’t available in their preferred UCaaS system.
Step Three: Update Security Practices: With any new technology comes a changing set of security threats. In order to prepare for the vast amount of data that will move over your network with a VoIP migration, it’s important to add encryption technology and virtual private networks (VPNs). These steps help prevent the man-in-the-middle from intercepting SIP traffic with the goal of eavesdropping and attempting to capture sensitive information.
Denial of Service (DoS) attacks are common with VoIP, in which the phone lines are flooded with illegitimate traffic that prevents legitimate calls. You can prevent this type of attack with firewalls and session border controllers (SBCs), which can identify incoming threats.
VoIP offers lower-cost, flexible communications technology that helps enterprises pursue bigger business objectives. Before your VoIP migration, take time to prep these three key areas to ensure success. A fourth key step is to contact us at Access Tech, where we can assist you through each step of migration for a seamless communications upgrade.