Top tips for resellers deploying VoIP Services
Steve Bieniek of VoIP Unlimited offers several tips for resellers deploying VoIP Trunking services:
- Ensure that the IP-PBX you sell and support is fully SIP-compliant for outbound calling with the SIP service provider you are looking to use. This is important because not all SIP networks work in the same way and you would not want to find any problems during a customer install.
- Is the SIP service provider able to support geographic number porting? Your customers must have the option of porting their numbers to allow for delivery of inbound call traffic via IP. This provides flexibility in internal number deployment within a company, potentially on any device such as mobile phone, IP handset or PBX.
- Is the SIP service provider compliant with the Communications Act 2003? It is a legal requirement that providers of electronic communication services supplying to end customers of less that ten users has a “Consumer Code of Conduct” approved by the industry regulator Ofcom. It is also a requirement to have a Sales & Marketing Code of Conduct too.
- Is the SIP provider registered with an Arbitration service such as CISAS or OTELO? This is also a legal compliancy requirement of the Communications Act 2003.
- Sufficient technical expertise. The IP telephony market is still developing and we are still a way off from making everything “plug and play”. End customers can have different LAN configurations and setting up IP telephony through existing routers and firewalls may be problematic. It would be beneficial to have the ability to talk through any network problems with an IP expert from the service provider side, not just relying on the manufacturer or distributor.
- Flexible billing. If you are looking to get into the IP telephony and come from a traditional telephony background, its likely you will already have a billing system. Can the SIP service provider provide comprehensive CDRs (Call Data Records)? If you come from a more traditional IT background, you may want the SIP service provider to provide you a managed billing service with recurring commission payments.
- Connectivity. Is the service provider “connectivity neutral”? i.e. provides their service over the customer’s existing circuit or do they have their own flavour of broadband. Some SIP providers offer VoIP optimised broadband connections, interconnected into their network, to lower network latency and helping to minimise packet loss which leads to broken up voice calls.
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Reprinted with permission from VoIPinBusiness.co.uk