If you’re thinking about deploying or upgrading a VoIP solution, you’ve heard about SIP trunking as a way to reduce both hard and soft costs, while tapping nearly unlimited bandwidth and enabling access to rich communications.
One of a SIP network’s biggest virtues is the ability to share resources cost-effectively. For example, a business with 10 locations nationwide can streamline down to one central call center in a way that’s invisible to customers. Or a company whose inbound calls come in bursts can dedicate bandwidth to voice when needed, instead of paying for more bandwidth to handle a few heavy traffic days a year.
SIP talk seems to be everywhere this summer, but the standard continues to evolve. Interoperability issues make the technology appropriate for some enterprises, but not all. In short, your communications platform may not work with the SIP gateway or edge device you want to buy.
Before you decide if you are ready to SIP the Kool-Aid, think about these five criteria:
- Do you need a multi-site network? Businesses with many locations, and/or demand for fluid communications, can realize huge cost savings. If you don’t fit this description, SIP trunking may not be worth the effort right now.
- Do you have the right security measures in place? VoIP brings in a host of new security implications for your business such as DoS attacks and fraud. Determine your organization’s readiness when making the leap to VoIP.
- Is security a larger concern? Low-cost VoIP providers are everywhere, but most use the public Internet to carry their traffic. Major carriers, including Qwest, deliver SIP service on their private networks for quality and security purposes.
- Are you willing to invest time and money in research and testing – not just the hardware, but the service provider? Not all providers bring the same game to the field. Some may not provide service into regions where you plan to grow five years from now. Others may not exist five years from now.
- Are you in a position to change your phone system? If you’re not already using VoIP, you will need it for SIP trunking. If you’re making an office move, or you’ve reached the end of your communications equipment’s usable life – and these days, that could be within three to five years – it’s a perfect time to look at making the change to SIP trunking.
Have you deployed SIP trunk? Are there other things to consider?