Vodafone has announced it has more than one million users of its hosted One Net service in Europe, as growing numbers of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) seek to gain competitive advantage by bringing their fixed and mobile communications together.
In the current challenging economic climate, small businesses recognise that they need to be even more responsive to the needs of their customers and One Net enables them to field calls both quickly and efficiently, wherever they may be, Vodafone stated.
SMEs are also achieving cost savings by handing the management of both their fixed and mobile communications needs to Vodafone, the operator claimed. Significantly, cost savings are also realised because all calls between One Net company handsets, both fixed and mobile, are free.
As One Net is a rental-based solution, priced on a per user basis, it is highly attractive to SMEs because it requires no capital investment. The current economic environment has made this hosted service even more appealing to businesses.
Vodafone One Net’s scalability enables customers to easily increase or decrease the number of connections to match changing staffing needs within their business. Through its advanced call management system, the One Net service allows users to answer calls to their businesses on either their fixed or mobile phone, plus the ability to transfer calls to any phone within the business, and benefit from one combined voicemail box.
Also, One Net reduces the administrative burden for SMEs through its simple per user, per month charging system, together with one monthly bill covering all of the business’s communications needs.
The One Net system utilises Vodafone’s IP Centrex telephony system, which enables this high level of integration between fixed and mobile phone handsets. The recent success of products such as Vodafone’s One Net service has contributed to an upward revision of IDC’s IP Centrex services forecasts. Its August 2010 report reported: “We see this market taking off over the forecast period. IP Centrex is the fastest growing IP voice service in Western Europe, and it is expected to be worth $3.6 billion (€2.6 billion) in 2014. This is a compound annual growth rate of 47% in the period. ”
Said Tom Craig, Vodafone’s business services director: “Vodafone has taken a leadership position in this emerging market for Cloud Telephony. This market is taking off because customers can now be more responsive to business enquiries, manage their communications costs more efficiently and – being a hosted solution; they can spend more time focused on their own business. The service enables smaller companies to compete alongside their larger rivals by giving them all the call handling capabilities they will need without a significant financial outlay. In addition, it offers a transparent, per user charging model across both fixed and mobile phones.”