Top 10 BackOffice Features When Operating a VoIP Company
This article originally appeared on VoIP Innovations. To read more articles from VoIP Innovations, visit their blog.
When dealing with a VoIP service wholesaler, the BackOffice is where you handle your business operations such as ordering and managing DIDs, porting numbers, organizing groups and endpoints, and so much more. While a BackOffice is imperative for your VoIP company’s survival, they are not all created equal. To guarantee that your company is operating at its full potential, make sure that your BackOffice includes all of the following features.
1) Choice of Carriers
In today’s world, ITSPs, VoIP resellers and enterprise customers should have access to dozens of industry leading carriers and choose the carrier on which they want their services to reside. Having the ability to do this removes the hassle of maintaining multiple carrier agreements. It also eliminates the need to manage multiple carrier orders, cancellations, and service changes to reduce the time needed to manage your services. However, choosing your carrier does come with a downside: picking the carrier that is your perfect match. Make sure you find a wholesale provider that features a carrier performance ranking system to give you peace of mind.
2) Choice of DID Features
As we mentioned above, today’s telecommunications world is becoming more fluid. In the past, we chose our line services and never touch them again. Now, we are updating and changing our features such as 911 location, Caller ID, and forwarding just to name a few. Having the ability to make real-time phone service changes provides resellers with an advantage over their competition.
3) Personal Number Warehouse
Having the ability to have a full stock of numbers in the areas where you sell most of your services will give you a leg up on your competition. There is nothing more frustrating than when you make a sale just to find that there aren’t numbers readily available for your customer. You will want to find a wholesale provider that offers a personal DID inventory to stock up on DIDs and store them as inactive until they’re ready for use.
4) Automated DID Stocking
Finding a wholesale provider with a personal inventory is great, but you will want to find a wholesale provider that can automatically keep your DID storage fully stocked. This feature not only keeps your DIDs stocked for your critical areas, but it will also save time spent on ordering and returning DIDs.
5) Customer Management
Organizing all of your customer’s data can be overwhelming, especially the more your company grows. This can often leave a mess that makes controlling costs and customer management very difficult. Look for a wholesale provider that has the tools to organize your like services into groups, and these groups into clients. This will provide you with the ability to have a complete view of your services.
6) End User Empowerment
As we mentioned above, having access to change and update services is a must. However, empowering your End Users to change and update their own services can save you even more time. Look for a wholesale provider that gives you a brandable portal for your End Users. With this feature you can empower your End Users to manage their own services. End Users have a range of rights and permissions depending on what the reseller assigns to them. Simply put, the brandable End User portal is awesome! Talk about a time saver!
7) Cost Control
The number one business metric for any business is GPM (gross profit margin). Without a healthy GPM, most businesses will fail. Search for a wholesale provider who offers leading edge-cost saving measures. There are three MUST have performance metrics when measuring cost control. These metrics can come in many different shapes and sizes, but find a provider that provides a dashboard (customizable preferred), in depth financial reporting, and flexible email notifications.
8) Paperless Number Porting
If you are selling DIDs/Numbers then it is inevitable that you will have to port many of your customer’s numbers to your service, which means your wholesale VoIP provider’s service. The biggest challenges VoIP providers face is the length of time it takes to port a number. Most providers take 30 days, but a fast provider can take less than 15 days. The reason some providers take 30 days to port a number is due to submission errors and poor number management during the entire porting process. Only choose a provider if they have a paperless porting process. This will eliminate the need to print, sign, fax, or email an LOA (letter of authorization) again. If you want to take it a step further, find a wholesale VoIP provider that allows you to control which carrier you want to port to, as well as a carrier ranking system to make your decision more educated.
9) Fraud Protection
Fraud is VoIP’s greatest enemy. In the past, we normally saw fraud on International calls, but now we are starting to see it happen more on a domestic level. There are many different types of fraud and many different types of schemes. I strongly recommend that you find a wholesale VoIP provider who offers a VoIP Fraud detection system. Protecting your business and your End Users has to be your top priority.
10) Automated Billing
VoIP billing can be a nightmare if you don’t have the correct billing system. There are hundreds of systems and many different types to choose from (in the cloud, on-premise, etc.). Ideally, you will want to find a provider who offers a hosted or on-premise system with their services. This can be hard to find but there are a few reputable wholesale VoIP providers who offer an integrated billing system. Finding a VoIP provider with their own integrated billing system is ideal to ensure compatibility with their VoIP services. Finding the right billing system will allow you to correctly maximize your sales efforts and save you mountains of time.
Source: Telecom Reseller