Delivering ROI on VoIP

Falk Bleyl, senior product director VoIP at THUS says a recent survey found that 78% of businesses are not building a plan to measure Return On Investment (ROI) when rolling out VoIP networks. Under such circumstances, cost savings resulting from VoIP could get overlooked.

“It is essential that businesses prepare a thorough business case before moving to an IP voice network. Whether your business is ready to enjoy the benefits of VoIP depends on the following key factors:

Balancing initial outlay costs against savings. This may seem obvious but many companies overlook it. VoIP does not automatically mean cost savings. While there are considerable efficiencies to be made, for example costs of mobile phone calls are reduced as employees can be reached via their laptops, there are also outlay costs that need to be taken into account. The replacement of hardware can, for example, involve an initial outlay of capital. The benefits of long-term savings need to be weighed against the short-term costs before businesses think about migrating to VoIP. There are, however, ways of reducing the costs to make the initial expenditure more acceptable

Timing. The timing of deployment can tip the balance of a business case in favour of VoIP. Businesses should aim to deploy VoIP at the ideal time. For example, if a business is moving to a green-field site, it is a perfect opportunity to ‘piggy-back’ the costs of building a VoIP network onto the costs of putting in other necessary cables. Similarly, if a business’s network has come to the end of its natural life and needs upgrading, many of the costs of VoIP can be absorbed into this. For example, if a business is upgrading its Local Area Network for Quality of Service and Ethernet Voice, the costs of migrating to VoIP can be shared across the voice and data networks. By doing this, the expenditure on both networks is easier to justify

Businesses should not move to VoIP because it is the latest exciting technology, they should move because they understand the benefits their business can achieve. VoIP is an investment, and like any investment must be researched thoroughly. Benefits and costs must be measured, and timing is key.”

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