Skype is an invaluable tool for any business, with benefits in both cost and performance. It is important to understand these benefits to identify the best solutions for your business.
Benefit 1: Clarity
Any user of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone systems appreciates call clarity. The scratchy audio of conventional phones (even landlines) is a real barrier to communication. In spite of the numerous electronic ways devised for us to communicate, definite benefits exist in both clearly seeing and hearing the person with which you are talking. A smooth conversation makes a big difference in your business discussions; people often get tired of asking you to repeat something. In addition, you can pick up certain nuances in tone and expression that only a VoIP connection allows. Communication is the lifeline of any successful business, and clarity of that communication is critical. Don’t get caught in the business equivalent of driving with a fogged-up windshield!
Benefit 2: Cost
Perhaps even more importantly — especially for small- and medium-sized businesses — Skype is highly cost-effective. The flagship feature of Skype is free Skype-to-Skype calls (video or voice), and the growing adoption of Skype increases this benefit over time. For other Skype services that do have fees, Skype provides business-friendly options. International calling in particular is very reasonable, which is a huge benefit, as more businesses — even smaller ones — are doing business worldwide. Skype also provides management tools that let you manage your accounts very easily. Straightforward tracking of any expense is the best way to understand and optimize it.
Benefit 3: Travel Reduction
No business should totally eliminate business travel (at least until a virtual handshake is indistinguishable from the real thing!), but the features of Skype let you replace a good portion of it with clear voice and video communication. This feature lets your business move faster, since you can communicate with customers, teammates and suppliers without having to plan travel ahead of time. Impromptu Skype meetings keep that sense of urgency at the forefront of your business.
Benefit 4: Ease-of-Use
A key benefit of Skype is a simple set-up process. For a business, a significant barrier to the adoption of many new technologies and systems is a complicated configuration process. No one wants to invest hours in installing and setting up new functions, and still not even be sure if they are working right. Setting up Skype is a completely straightforward process, and the features work with simple clicks on a user-friendly interface. Skype even provides a test call number to verify that all its features are working properly. We all know from experience that the greatest benefit of a business tool is a direct function of its ease of use, and Skype scores very well in this area.
Benefit 5: Reliability
The use of any business tool is also impacted by how much you can count on it to work as expected. Skype is based on Internet connectivity rather than cellphone connections, so dropped calls aren’t an issue. Even if you experience an Internet connectivity problem, Skype detects it and warns you ahead of time, so if something does happen, it’s not a surprise. Features like this will make your team want to use Skype, and it will save you money only if your people want to use it!