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In the 26 years since the Internet went mainstream (1994), the definition of a “telephone company” has undergone a radical transformation. No longer do we talk about a POTS (plain old telephone service) run through copper wires, instead we send dials in and out of the cloud. Instead of a handful of companies offering domestic, toll-free, and international voice service, there are thousands.

The challenge for SaaS platform owners, enterprise call centers, and business owners, is finding the right voice provider solution to meet your needs. Here’s a short list of important things to consider as you navigate a sea of choices:

Call completion
Placing a call is easy, delivering it can be a challenge. With your call hopping between multiple carriers as it traverses a route, ask any potential partner about their call completion rate and dropped calls. Most carriers report a 10-12% completion rate, while top-performers reach 20-25% or better.

Call quality
Once a call is completed, how do you and your dialed party sound? A poor-sounding call that’s delayed, jittery or otherwise hard to hear won’t cut it. Your voice provider must offer tools, technology and a network of carriers to deliver the highest-quality calls possible, all without uttering the dreaded phrase, “can you hear me now?”

Grow with your business (scale)
Many of our partners started with a single carrier or trusted Twilio to handle their calls, but quickly outgrew their capacity. You know better: start with a flexible partner who will allow you to make more calls per second and elastically grow to handle more daily traffic as your needs grow. Future-proof your voice provider choice today by asking about calls per second (CPS) and leaving the carrier negotiations to them to lock in a cohesive network of 40 carriers.

A network to reach far and wide
Don’t waste time and energy trying to piece together your own network of carriers to reach your customers or users. Instead, sign with a voice solution who offers 40 carriers to serve your domestic, toll-free, and international needs right out of the gate so you can reach 95% of the population on day one.

99.9% consistent uptime
Your voice service is only as good as its reliability. When your application, contact center staff, or employees pick up a the phone, it just needs to work. Your voice provider needs to be 99.9% reliable, since no one’s perfect. To reach that number, they must offer dynamic call routing, blocking, and diagnostic tools to put outage mitigation in your hands, along with a support team who’s there when you need them.

Flexible pricing
This is far down the list for a reason. While cost is important, like any business-critical service, it should never be your primary consideration. Of course you don’t want to overpay for your voice calls, but at the same time we’ve all experienced what a low-cost carrier does to win our business: poor call quality, dropped calls, outages, and worse. Good voice providers will make it easy for you to lock in an agreed-upon volume of minutes at a great rate, and be flexible to increase your agreement as needed, leading to greater reductions in cost as you scale.

5-star support
Sign with a provider who knows your business and has 10+ years of experience working with the highest quality carriers. When you have an issue or question, their support team needs to be responsive and available. Filing a support ticket or calling in should get you what you need in minutes or hours, never days. Voice telecom services can be a technological challenge, which is why demanding 5-star support built-in with your agreement is key.

We invite you to learn more about thinQ to handle your inbound and outbound calling needs. Get a 15-minute demo this week when you connect with one of our cloud specialists.