Industry News >Unified Communications >

Contractors Building Unified Communications into Businesses

March 11, 2015 by

There's a level of uncertainty inherent in the construction industry. There could be traveling, and workers might not be in the same place at the same time every day. It can be difficult to keep track of daily schedules, but unified communications can ensure workers have all the needed information to stay on task and can keep the lines of communication open.

IP Telephony Boosts Customer Service

During the busy season, it's rare that contractors are in their offices, meaning calls can go unanswered. This is why some companies are switching to VoIP services. Long gone are the days of playing phone tag. Now, if no one answers in the office, the call will be directed to an employee's cell phone. Customers can receive a response immediately instead of having to wait for someone to return their call.

VoIP has also increased sales for construction companies and hardware stores. When a customer's call is transferred, they can hear promotions instead of silence or ringing, according to a Constructor Magazine article.

"The sky's the limit on some of this," Jerry Howard, Irving Materials vice president of IT, explained to the source. "Somebody is on hold, and they hear something, and it clicks: 'I didn't know they did that.' It's an opportunity you didn't know you had missed before. That's a huge benefit."

Building in the Cloud

When construction workers are on site, they might need access to information they don't have with them. However, with cloud-based services, they can find what they need without going to the office. The cloud can help with back-office duties, such as payroll and billing, and on-site tasks, like delivering construction plans, according to a separate Constructor Magazine story.

Cloud services are also less expensive and more convenient than a private phone system. Contractors only have to pay an operating fee for the space they're using, as opposed to managing an entire PBX. The cloud provides both big and small businesses with more efficiency and more flexibility.

Security also plays a large role in the switch to the cloud. Companies no longer have to worry about losing documents if something were to happen to the server, the first source said. Everything is stored on the cloud, which is accessible from any device connected to the Internet. A cloud service provider most likely also has better security protocols in place, according to the second story.

While only about 35 percent of contractors use cloud computing, the ones that do see the benefits. Through services, such as the cloud and VoIP, construction companies can provide premium customer assistance and run their businesses more efficiently.

Subscribe to Fuze's Newsletter