• Status: Solved
  • Priority: Medium
  • Security: Public
  • Views: 405
  • Last Modified:

Setting up VOIP for a small office. 5 phones, no voicemail, outgoing calls only.

A friend of mine is running for congress.  He needs a bank of 4 or 5 phones for volunteers to make calls to constituents.  There will be a good deal of in state long distance calls.  He will keep one land line for all incoming calls.  This system will only need to be active for six months.

Is VOIP the right thing to do?
0
tcarrillo
Asked:
tcarrillo
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
2 Solutions
 
tcarrilloAuthor Commented:
I would like recommendations how to do this if it is the best path.  I have been looking at Broadvoice.  How much bandwidth does the DSL connection need?  What devices should I use?  Analog or VOIP phones?  The office will only be open until the election is over in November.
0
 
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
VoIP could be fine, but you need to find a provider that would accept a 6 month contract.  In many cases, the "cheap" ones won't because it can take a normal VoIP line up to 9-11 months to turn a profit on a line.  In addition, the "unlimited" minutes are not necessarily unlimited - if you use "excessive" time on them, they may ask for more money.  Putting incoming calls on a POTS line (analog) doesn't make much sense to me - a VoIP line can do incoming calls just fine.  A bigger concern would be your Fax or Alarm system if you have one.  Those systems don't generally work well or consistantly over a VoIP line.

I think given your term, I would probably go with a POTS provider especially if the calls are really going to be local (as I imagine most would be).
0
 
tcarrilloAuthor Commented:
More than half of the calls would be long distance.  The candidate lives on the edge of the congressional district, it is in California and it covers a lot of area.  The non-unlimited "unlimited" minutes could certainly be an issue considering there could be 4 or 5 lines going 4 plus hours a day.  There is one land line already in existence.  The campaign manager wants to receive all the incoming calls on that line and have voice mail on it.  My understanding is that implementing voice mail on a VOIP system would up the cost considerably.

I will double check on the the total time needed.
0
Efficient way to get backups off site to Azure

This user guide provides instructions on how to deploy and configure both a StoneFly Scale Out NAS Enterprise Cloud Drive virtual machine and Veeam Cloud Connect in the Microsoft Azure Cloud.

 
Reid PalmeiraTelecom EngineerCommented:
as leew suggests, there aren't many voip providers willing to give service on such a short term.

adding voicmail to many voip systems doesn't significantly add to the cost. many include voicemail as part of the package. if you're keeping the single landline for the inbound anyway, i'd like to offer one possible solution for you on the cheap. for the time being Skype is offering free outbound calls to the PSTN in the US and canada. a good headset will run you maybe 30 bucks each and Skype is free to download. you can set up a small phone bank to place calls pretty easily for very little money. you'll need to check to make sure your DSL connection has the necessary bandwidth, especially if you have asymetrical service. but if all you're doing is placing calls out from these four or five lines, it's easy to set up a few workstatiosn with skype and a headset, even more so now that calls are essentially free in the US
0
 
tcarrilloAuthor Commented:
Rpalmeira22,

This sounds like a good plan.  Is Skype reliable as far as connection quality and up time is concerned?
0
 
Reid PalmeiraTelecom EngineerCommented:
skype is basically as reliable as your internet connection. do a bandwidth speed check on your link and see what kind of upstream and downstream speeds you get, that should give you some idea of how many concurrent voice conversations you can run. Figure about 80 kbps that's kilo bits per second per call. skype says it's 3-16 KBps (that's kilobytes) per call. 16 KBps * 8 bits/byte = 128 kbps (kilobits). the big factor in any voip setup is the bandwidth. as long as you have enough bandwidth, you should be fine.

the software itself is good though it does have some concerens about things like seurity (which effects almost all VoIP really).

0
 
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
The problem is that most VoIP providers buy huge blocks of minutes from a company that provides the conversion from internet to standard phone.  Calling VoIP to VoIP on the same network costs them nothing, but calling VoIP to POTS DOES cost them, though you can expect it to be fractions of a cent, I would think.  That's why unlimited is unlimited as long as you don't abuse it.

And as rpalmeira22 states, Voice Mail is such a basic function, there's no problem with it - though there MIGHT be limits on the amount of voicemail, you would have the benefit of (at least with most services) having the voicemail emailed to you so it could be archived and easily forwarded to anyone else.  Not so easy to do that with many POTS lines.
0

Featured Post

Veeam Disaster Recovery in Microsoft Azure

Veeam PN for Microsoft Azure is a FREE solution designed to simplify and automate the setup of a DR site in Microsoft Azure using lightweight software-defined networking. It reduces the complexity of VPN deployments and is designed for businesses of ALL sizes.

  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
Tackle projects and never again get stuck behind a technical roadblock.
Join Now