In a previous blog we told you about BT's plan to switch off the ISDN network within the next 10 years and how SIP trunking is the alternative. To follow up on this, we are going to tell you more about SIP trunks and how they will benefit your business and give you advice on how to implement them. 
What are SIP trunks? 
 
SIP stands for 'Session Initiation Protocol' and is a communications protocol used to set up and clear down sessions with one or more users over the internet. SIP trunks are internet lines whereby part of the broadband connection is dedicated to voice traffic only. They offer a much cheaper and more flexible alternative to ISDN. 
 
What are the benefits of switching to SIP? 
 
More and more businesses are realising the benefits of SIP and studies show that this is growing year on year - have a look at the benefits below and you will see why. 
 
Scalability 
As your business grows, SIP trunks enable you to simply add more channels. Equally, if you need to scale down your operation you can remove them. This makes your telephony agile and reactive to your business needs. 
 
Flexibility 
If your business is moving out of a local area yet you still want to show that local number on an outbound call, SIP trunks provide easy manipulation of outbound numbers. 
 
No physical lines 
SIP trunks are a virtual line which means that you can consolidate voice & data over a single network. This gives you increased resilience as you can divert calls to mobiles or other sites so that you never miss a call. 
 
Cost Savings 
SIP trunks are more cost effective than traditional ISDN lines. Calls between sites are free and because you can consolidate your voice and data traffic onto a single line you can further reduce your costs. 
 
Rationalisation 
If your business has multi-sites, SIP trunking provides line rationalisation. If you are currently using ISDN you are likely to have ISDN connections to each individual telephone system at each site. SIP trunks reduce the number of connections you need and the number of telephone systems that you will need to maintain. This simplifies your telecommunications infrastructure. 
 
Unified Communications 
Businesses are often made up of staff out on the road and remote workers, so being able to make and receive calls and e-mails, video conference, access Outlook and instant message has become increasingly important. SIP trunks enable more devices to talk to your network.  
 
High Quality Audio 
Call quality is improved with SIP as high speed connections provide increased HD Quality voice. 
 
How do you implement SIP? 
 
Deploying SIP trunks into your business isn't as complicated as you may think. With a bit of planning and working closely with a good SIP provider will ensure that you will be able to enjoy the benefits that SIP trunks offer without any disruption to your business. 
 
Firstly, think about your current telephony set up - how is it working for you now (type and number of lines you are currently using, number of users, what numbers are you using and how are your calls routed?). 
How would you like to improve on your telephony set up (could you reduce the number of lines you have, do you want to increase the capacity of calls coming in, do you need to improve on disaster recovery, have you a need for staff mobility?). 
Identify a good SIP provider - looking out for quality customer service should be an important part of your decision making process. A provider that is knowledgeable and responsive to your requirements will be invaluable, both in the day to day running of your telephony and in times of critical need such as downtime or peak demand. A good provider will check if your network is up to the job and know how much bandwidth you will need. They will explain to you how the process will work and give you an idea of how long it will take. It should be their priority to ensure that the transition is as smooth as possible. 
 
Moving to new technology can be daunting and we often worry about the implications it may have on our business. However, with better understanding of the technology available to us and good planning, we can benefit from what this technology can offer us. SIP trunking is a great example of this. 
 
As you can see, the benefits to your business by deploying SIP trunks are something to seriously consider. Not only are they replacing ISDN which will be switched off in 2025, therefore future-proofing your telephony, they offer lots of features that can enhance how you communicate with your customers. 
 
For more information on our SIP trunks click here to request a call back from one of our experts. 
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