Extension calling has been around for decades now, you may be familiar with its usage in a business context. However, VoIP services provide a rich feature set for phone extensions. They are smarter and you can use them in various situations that were not possible before. Call forwarding is the most vital use for extensions but companies have also started utilizing these features in market research, marketing, entering new markets, etc.
Does a small business need extension given the size of the company? If you’re still on the fence, consider the following benefits of using them
1. Multiple lines can be shared
As a company grows, extensions don’t remain a luxury but become a necessity. Even a small business can benefit from using extensions instead of buying a separate line/number for every employee on staff. You can imagine the savings whether you have 10 lines or thousand numbers
It’s not just the price for an extra line. Since hosted VoIP systems add traffic to the network, it takes extra bandwidth for every line you add. Extensions help make you do more with fewer resources
2. Internal calling made simple
Internal calling (within the company) and it does not matter where your colleagues are located has become easy with extension. Your team does not have to remember long numbers for each individual they need to call, so no more long list numbers stuck up on the wall of your desk. A 3 or 4 digit extension is much easier to keep in mind. For a small business with limited employees, it doesn’t resonate much. But what if you are a company that needs to communicate with 5 or 6 teams during the day? Shorter extensions make it easier for everyone.
3. Allow clients to skip the automated system
The auto-attendant feature is particularly handy for larger firms with several departments or divisions. Even if it’s their first call or they don’t know the correct phone number to dial, a caller can contact the right person.
Return callers who already know where they want to go, on the other hand, may find it tedious to wait. Customers can rapidly contact the manager or account representative via extensions if they know the relevant extension.
4. Save time and increase efficiency
By allowing extensions for individual users, organizations can save a lot of time. Smaller extension numbers help in various scenarios as well as make=ing calls more efficient. With extensions, employees may pass incoming calls to the appropriate person much more quickly. They’re also less prone to make mistakes when transferring because there are fewer digits to dial.
Adding a couple more people to a conference call that already exists? It is significantly faster to use extension dialing. It may not seem like much, but saving a few seconds here and there can add up. But what about the number of calls your network receives during the week? Extensions have a noticeable impact on productivity.
5. Ad campaigns are put to the test and evaluated
Traditional advertising strategies have traditionally relied on mass media to reach their target audiences. Today’s marketing campaigns, on the other hand, are more targeted on certain market segments and are usually modified to meet requirements. Businesses may execute multiple campaigns at the same time thanks to social media and online advertising.
But how do you determine how effective each campaign is? If you want potential consumers to call in, one way is to use phone extensions. Assume you’re testing three distinct social media advertising with different celebs. You may provide a distinct extension to each ad and correctly track incoming calls. You’ll soon discover which ad is performing better than the rest, if any.
6. In new markets, maintain a local presence
Companies are constantly taking a risk when they expand into new regions and markets. You require an office to provide services to your clients, but you are unsure whether sales will be adequate to support the establishment of a new branch. Many individuals value having a local presence, and potential clients may be hesitant to trust an overseas organisation.
This is another situation in which phone extensions come in handy. You may assign many extensions to a virtual phone number with a local area code. Because extensions don’t take into account where your employees are physically located, employees in Seattle can answer calls from California. Customers in California will just see a local phone number on their screen and will not need to know where your agents are situated.
7. Let users work from anywhere
Do you have a mobile workforce that travels for work on a regular basis? Perhaps the current epidemic has compelled your workers to work from home for the time being. Many businesses are experimenting with hybrid workdays, in which some employees only come in for part of the week. Others may work mostly from home, with occasional visits to the office for training or meetings.
When it comes to hiring and maintaining employees who have other duties at home, this approach provides you more options. Your consumers, on the other hand, still expect someone to pick up the phone and fix their problems. Even if your staff operate from different locations, using extensions helps you retain a professional image for your consumers. Callers aren’t required to know where your employees are as long as they can reach them when necessary.
8. Allow staff to have more mobility
On the other hand, location independence empowers your staff to work from anywhere. In a regular workplace, employees require time off for medical appointments, school pick-ups, and visits to ill parents, among other things. Employees spend less time travelling to and from work as a result of the new work style. They can fit meetings in around their other responsibilities and work later in the evening if necessary. Furthermore, while certain ailments may not prevent your staff from working, they are contagious, therefore you don’t want them to come into the workplace. Working from home allows employees to continue working while avoiding the spread of sickness.
However, phone extensions are required to make this possible. Employees may work from a variety of places, even on the road, if necessary. An employee may, for example, have a desk phone at work, a laptop at home, and a mobile phone while travelling. They can keep connected even while they’re on the road thanks to phone extensions. Employees will never miss a call from a consumer thanks to mobile apps.
9. Call patterns should be tracked, recorded, and analysed.
Another great application for phone extensions is to track and analyse call patterns, which is especially useful for customer-facing departments like sales and tech support. Frequently, a company will provide a variety of products and services. It’s still useful to understand which products require more assistance and why, whether or not you have specialised teams for each product line.
Phone extensions can assist you in routing clients to the appropriate queue, where specialists can respond to their questions. It will reduce the number of times a call is moved before being resolved. Furthermore, extensions can assist you in answering issues such as:
- Which product queue has the longest call wait time and requires the most agents?
- Is it necessary for employees to receive further training if clients call back for the same problem many times?
- Is there a need for greater documentation for a product because users have simple questions?
- Is it necessary to relocate agents during peak hours or to plan shifts to cover more hours?
Although phone extensions are not new, hosted VoIP systems have expanded their ability to include new scenarios. Call forwarding and sharing external lines were the primary functions of traditional extensions. Modern phone extensions, on the other hand, can do so much more. If you’re still on the fence about utilising them, try it out for yourself. There’s no reason not to give them a try in your organisation, especially because most suppliers provide them for free (at least for a limited time or in some cases, infinite).
You will have total access to all of the capabilities available for your business phone system if you sign up for a RoRotel.