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Hosted PBX gaining ground in SA



South African businesses are rapidly switching on to the benefits a hosted PBX (switchboard) environment, with several organisations having already adopted the new technology that takes VoIP (Voice over IP) to the next level.

That’s according to Graeme Victor, CEO of telecommunications solutions company Du Pont Telecom, which recently launched one of the country’s first hosted PBX solutions based on carrier-strength TELES Class 5 technology.

‚With the growth and maturation of the data networks within South Africa and the changes in the interconnect agreements, it is now possible to run a company’s telecommunications with only an IP phone on each desk, resulting in capex and opex savings of some 35 percent,‚ Victor says.

The VoIP-based Du Pont Hosted PBX solution delivers a combination of cost-effectiveness, scalability, and robust features. It enables businesses to streamline communications, improve customer responsiveness and increase employee productivity: all while reducing overall telephony costs.In contrast to a premises-based PBX phone system, the state-of-the-art equipment and technology of the Du Pont Hosted PBX solution is located, owned and managed off-premises by Du Pont, and leased to the customer. This eliminates purchasing, installing, and the need to manage a full-featured IP or traditional PBX phone system.

‚ A business does not need to make even a nominal investment in equipment or infrastructure: nor does it have to worry about operating, maintaining or upgrading its network to support VoIP,‚ he says.

‚Du Pont Hosted PBX offers a remarkably cost-effective way for an organisation to get high-end PBX features and all the business advantages of IP telephony exceptionally affordably and without risk, regardless of whether the company has one or 100 employees.‚ Victor explains that a business with multiple branches and sites needs only one centralised attendant consol to fulfil the traditional ‚switchboard operator‚ role, should this be required. All PBX signalling and commands, however, are made by Du Pont’s hosted Class 5 switch.This means that any Internet-access line can become an extension of the office. If employees’ laptops or mobile phones are configured as their ‚soft’ phones, they simply have to connect to an available Internet connection and immediately become part of the office telephony system, reachable on their office extension.

‚It doesn’t matter whether they are at home, in the office or in travelling abroad – they will have access to all the functionality of the company PBX system including automatic least cost routing of all outgoing calls,‚ Victor adds.

The Du Pont Hosted PBX solution, which comes with a wide choice of IP phones, makes the setting up of new users as easy as a few clicks of a button. Managing the moving of extensions and people within departments is done without additional phone cables being installed.

It delivers all the features one would expect to find on a sophisticated PBX – and businesses have access to new features as soon as these become available without having to go through the hassle of upgrading their own systems.

Managing user’s access can be done through a GUI. This means that companies can have control of their environment should they wish. Alternatively, they could outsource this to Du Pont who will maintain the entire system for them.

In addition, installed units can be monitored on a daily basis through Du Pont Telecom’s Management Programme. By monitoring the system, Du Pont is able to ensure ongoing optimisation of the system and telecommunications savings.