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What are some best ways to save money on a VoIP deployment without losing too much quality?

Learn some best practices for VoIP deployment that will also help you save money without losing quality.

What are some best ways to save money on a VoIP deployment without losing too much quality?
In most cases, the short answer is to do it gradually. One of the biggest concerns in deploying VoIP is the changeover from TDM and how it might disrupt, degrade or even shut down the phone system. Most businesses depend too much on voice to take this chance, and the deployment plan is best dictated by the state of the network. If the network is old or at capacity, then VoIP needs to be rolled out very carefully, and the business should start thinking about an upgrade or replacement.

To minimize this risk, VoIP rollouts usually start with one branch office, preferably one with limited customer facing functions. This allows the business to learn how to use VoIP and to work out any bugs in their network. Once VoIP starts to prove itself in this setting, the business will have confidence to expand the rollout to other locations.

For businesses that have more modern or robust networks, it will be easier to roll out VoIP more quickly without compromising quality. This also saves money as there will be less testing and tweaking required of the network.

Another scenario would be a total replacement -- forklift upgrade -- where the entire network is changed over and the company goes all-IP. This does not happen very often in existing business operations, but is increasingly common when new branch offices open, and there is no legacy system to replace. In these cases, the cost savings from VoIP are realized right away, and if the network is engineered properly, there should be very few quality issues to disrupt everyday service.

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