What is a cloud PBX?

A cloud PBX provides so much more than phone calls. With a cloud-based PBX, your company is equipped with a uniform communication solution, from chat and telephony to conference calls and video.

A cloud PBX = a cloud-based PBX = a hosted PBX2

A cloud-based PBX, or hosted PBX, is an exchange system that isn’t bound to a physical PBX, and provides the same telephony functions as a traditional landline-based PBX that relies on a physical hardware box. But a cloud PBX also includes several powerful digital communication tools – some of which are only possible thanks to being cloud-based.

 

Today, most companies have a PBX solution for their telephony. But a cloud PBX is much more than telephony and ensures tangible competitive advantages to your company. 

 

A cloud PBX of today comes with a great selection of communication services – from digital voice- and video calls, conference groups, SMS, and voice- and video messages – to voice mailboxes that transcribe all messages to emails. These are just some examples.

The history of the PBX

The PBX as a phenomenon is nothing new. It is based on the older, manual PBX introduced in the 1930s and handled by telephone operators. The main task of a PBX has traditionally been to support large organisations in lowering their telecommunication costs.

 

Modern PBX systems have gradually developed and been provided with new functions. Initially, the functions were simple, like response groups and call forwarding. During later years, complex queue systems, voicemail, conference calls, and similar services have become standard.

New opportunities in the cloud

Digitization became a turning point in telephony and PBX systems. Suddenly, organisations no longer needed physical phone lines to their offices, or even an on-site PBX, because calls could now be made using VoIP. That’s how the first hosted PBX came about, and finally, entirely cloud-based PBX solutions.

How does a cloud-based PBX work?

A cloud PBX is based on software in the cloud. You can make and receive calls through it, just as if the PBX was in place in your office (but you don’t need to prepare space for a physical exchange then). As a bonus, you get access to various powerful digital communication tools.

 

The most considerable advantage of a cloud-based PBX is the substantial difference in quality with the leading service. Your PBX provider controls, maintains, and updates services regularly in the cloud, meaning you always have access to the latest technology – as soon as it is released.

Scaling up and down is easy with a cloud PBX

With a cloud PBX, you don’t have to worry about the limited capacity of a physical PBX. Since the platforms are operated via IP, your capacity is practically unlimited. (In theory, there are limits, but you’ll never even come close to them unless you choose a bad PBX provider.) That means your business can consistently deliver outstanding customer service, even during periods of growth and increased workload.

 

If you choose a modern cloud PBX with a licence-based business model, you can quickly reduce your expenses if the business needs to cut down on the number of employees. In addition, you avoid the costs for hardware that a physical PBX entails.

Simple administration…

A cloud PBX is easily adjusted to your needs. Since a modern cloud PBX is built for self-service, you appoint functions to new employees and remove them when someone quits. You have complete control in all situations and get access to user statistics.

… and a constantly updated software

Moving your PBX to the cloud means you can sit back and relax, knowing your software is always automatically updated. The updates appear in your system automatically, and you always have access to the latest, best version of the software.

A cloud PBX facilitates integrations 

With a cloud PBX, it also becomes much easier to integrate your PBX services with other cloud-based applications you use. For example, you can connect the PBX to the calendar or your company's CRM system.

 

A cloud PBX is simply a modern hub for communication and collaboration, which gives your company tangible competitive advantages.

 

Buyer's guide  How to choose the right cloud PBX  Read the guide here

4 ways in which a cloud PBX can facilitate the business 

A cloud service will give your customers and employees within the company a better experience. Here are examples from four industries that clearly demonstrate how valuable a cloud PBX can be. 

1. For craftsmen

Bricklayers, painters, window cleaners, house cleaners, and everyone else who works with their hands all day knows how difficult it is to keep track of the phone in the middle of everything. If you have a colleague in the office, they can connect calls between colleagues. But if you don’t have that luxury, it is an excellent investment to record a nice welcome message with a telephone answer that is listened to and followed up continuously.

 

Want to become great at recording welcome messages? Read these tips.

 

2. At a doctor’s office

We have all, at some point, tried to get a hold of a doctor but failed to succeed. The window for getting through might only be an hour, and many patients call simultaneously. The line might be busy, or you get stuck in a mile-long queue. A function letting patients leave the queue and be called up instead can make a huge difference. The person won’t even have to leave their name and phone number since a cloud service already keeps track of that information.

 

3. Within hotels and restaurants 

Are you running a hotel, bar, or small intimate café? Then keypad options are a critical function. 

Press 1 to book a table. Press 2 to book a hotel room. Press 3 to get to the reception. 

 

Both you and your customers save time and energy by making it easy for guests to reach the right person. It’s also essential to be able to disconnect your cell phone number from the PBX after you’ve left work for the day. Otherwise, the risk is high that thirsty bar guests will call you at 01 AM.

 

4. For customer support

A support department is often reached through the main number that many people call. Therefore, it is a good idea to familiarise yourself with how the cloud PBX is configured so the calls can be forwarded as efficiently as possible. A smart cloud PBX is easy to administer yourself, and you can often receive training from the provider to get a better overview of the functions and users to be managed.


Call recording is a feature that can be hugely valuable to a support department and you should really look into that as you consider investing in a cloud PBX. Customer support can easily record all calls, which can then be used as documentation or as a training tool for new employees.

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