You’ve heard of VoIP and you want to start to benefit from the cost saving it will bring. There are a couple of initial considerations:

  1. Is your current telephony system IP enabled / SIP capable?
    If the answer is no, now might be the time to start thinking about implementing a new system. This isn’t something to take lightly and you’ll want to carefully consider your options in terms of what type of infrastructure to go for.
  2. Should you opt for a dedicated solution or a hosted solution that is rented from a third party?

Here, we’ll evaluate both options to help you find out which one would be best for your business.

Hosted IP telephony (VoIP)


Traditionally, firms that wanted telephone lines on their premises had to have a Private Branch Exchange (PBX), which would be connected by analogue or digital lines. The PBX would provide the intelligence to route the calls around the office as required, and the telephone lines would allow calls to be made and received to the outside world.

However, with Voice over IP technology allowing calls to be carried over data networks, the PBX no longer needs to be connected to physical telephone lines, nor does it need to be on site – it can be accessed from anywhere. With that in mind, telephony providers have built scalable, resilient platforms which businesses can connect to remotely – allowing you to have the functionality of a phone system without needing a PBX at all – you just rent the service.

The benefits

  • Cost savings – rather than having to invest in hardware, this type of solution becomes more of a subscription based service as you connect to the provider’s readily available system. This means you now only need one service provider for your phone calls, the maintenance of your phone system and your internet access, meaning you can cut out the cost of line rental, call charges, and maintenance charges, as well as the upfront investment in a PBX.
  • Business continuity – should some kind of mishap occur (for example, if an office is flooded), users can simply re-connect to the system from another location.
  • Scalability – if you have a start-up and only a small number of employees, but anticipate having many more in the future, you can upgrade your VoIP solution with your provider as you go along. This means you don’t pay for lots of phone lines in the first instance, but you’re also not being left short later on.
  • Stay current – hosted VoIP cuts out the need for maintenance and upgrades of old systems, as your provider takes on the responsibility for the managing and developing the platform. Therefore you are often able to take advantage of new updates without any further investment.
  • Private phone systems and dedicated telephony


    Though there are lots of benefits in going with a hosted, subscription based solution, there may be many reasons why you might still want to invest in your own, dedicated, phone system. As discussed, traditionally a PBX would be connected by analogue or digital lines, nowadays though you can use SIP Trunks instead – providing the full feature set of a phone system as you’ve known it but still gaining all the advantage of VoIP.

    The benefits

    • An up-front investment may make more financial sense for your business
      • A dedicated phone system will typically cost more than a hosted VoIP solution in the first place, but there are fewer additional charges afterwards; you don’t pay a provider each month to rent the service – once you’ve purchased the hardware, it’s yours! Depending on your size and type of business, this CAPEX model may be more cost effective.
      • You may be able to add dedicated telephony solutions to your balance sheets as an asset, meaning you can get money back from HM Revenue and Customs for its installation and/or running.
    • Complete control – because you own the equipment, you have complete control over the phone system, meaning you can carry out upgrades and install new technology whenever you like. This might suit the more tech-savvy among you.
    • Flexibility – dedicated phone systems can often offer a lot more flexibility in terms of features and functionality as they can be built to fit exactly what your business requires, whereas with hosted services you are often restricted to fixed packages and subject to the ‘standard’ features which most businesses use.

    Which to go for?

    Before you make a decision, it’s always best to speak to an expert in the field. Here at Tidy, we know what we’re talking about in terms of telecommunications and can help you tailor a solution for your company. Note that a hybrid solution might also apply if you’re erring between the two.

    We understand that there’s a lot to think about when a business needs to change its telephone systems, so come to us to make the process less of a headache.