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PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange, which is similar to a private telephone network that is used within a company or organization. Users of a PBX system are able to communicate internally with their company and any local clients, as well as externally. PBX systems for small businesses allow users to have more phones than physical phone lines, which enables them to make plenty of calls. Additionally, it will give some business features like call transfer, voicemail, call recording, interactive voice menus, and call queues.

Read more to find out what is PBX system and how does it work.

Traditional PBX systems have their own established phones specifically for this type of system and do require some software and hardware installation. This means that when purchasing this type of system, your business must be sure of this system, because most providers require vendor lock-ins, and offer services long term. These phone systems can also be offered as hosted or on-site solutions, allowing you the flexibility of what your business chooses.

3 Things You Should Know Before Switching to a Digital PBX System

  1. Digital PBX phone systems can be managed completely online and are able to work with existing phones.
  2. These phone systems have all the power that a traditional phone system has, but with no need to maintain or update the software used.
  3. When switching to a PBX phone system, your business will be saving loads of money, because PBX systems are offered for a fraction of the cost that traditional business phone services are. 
IP PBX phone systems place and receive phone calls over the internet.

Types of PBX Systems Your Business Can Choose From

PBX systems come in four different types of systems, and each one is defined by where they are located and its primary function. These types of systems can be operated either on-site or off-site. The four main types of PBX systems can be separated into two subcategories.

Traditional PBX Systems

  • On-premise PBX systems are located within a business’s location and can use either an analog or digital system.
  • Hosted PBX systems are located in the provider’s office, and are separate from the main businesses. These systems can also utilize either analog or digital systems.

IP Based PBX Systems

  • On-premise systems are located on a business’s grounds, Similar to a traditional system, digital or analog systems can be utilized.
  • Hosted systems are located separate from a business main office and are sometimes managed from the provider’s location.

How Does a PBX System Work?

A PBX system is monitored using a switchboard that processes all connections between the start of each call and the receiving end. This system can allow your business to provide many phone lines all connected to a public switch network, or even a VoIP network. Whichever your system is connected to will determine how calls are made and received.

PBX systems can also control all features your business needs, and allow communication with all outside callers. All your business’s phone lines will be connected so that employees can communicate with each other and clients easier.

IP PBX phone systems place and receive phone calls over the internet.

Features that PBX Systems Can Offer Businesses

PBX features are what will differentiate other systems from this one. Here are some of the most noted features that PBX systems offer clients and users. Read our next article If you want to learn more about cloud PBX solutions.

  1. Voicemail to email functions- In addition to the services offered, PBX systems will offer voicemail-to-email features, which will give users the opportunity to hear an audio file of transcript messages to their phone no matter what communication method they receive.
  2. Auto attendants– An auto attendant gives customers the option of pressing certain numbers so that their calls are directed accordingly.  For example, auto attendants will answer customer calls and list the different options they can choose from. From there, customers will be able to click the button that corresponds with what they are calling about and can be routed and transferred to the appropriate agent or information.
  3. On-Hold Music– Rather than having customers wait in a queue hearing total silence, some PBX systems will offer music or additional sounds that callers can hear while on the phone. Some music can be pre-selected or customized for each caller.
  4. Paging– If employees wish to send messages to their entire team, they can do so by using the PBX systems pager. This message can be sent using their telephone, mobile phone, or tablet and computer, which will broadcast a message through the business’s speak systems, allowing a large group of employees to hear information.
  5. Call Reports– These types of reports can break down your company’s data and include information on your agent’s phone usages. To take these reports a step further, companies can request detailed reports for each department, making it easy to make changes for specific areas of the business.
  6. Online Management– This feature is vital for some businesses because it lets employees and managers customize their systems from the comfort of their own phones, tablets, or desktops. By using this portal, your company can add users, review call reports, create groups, and see monthly states by the click of a button. Employees are also able to log into these portals and check their voicemails, view the company directories, and create call forward routes.
  7. Ring Groups– For those that are unfamiliar with this term, this feature will allow businesses to put employees with similar roles into one group. This will be beneficial for customers that are trying to reason someone from a certain department. For example, if callers are wishing to speak to someone from a sales team, they will be transferred to a group that has employees that deal with sales, making customer inquiries easier.