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Blogs

Never Miss Another Call

09 June 2016 at 14:06pm
VoIP offers many advantages to business users. Increased flexibility, increased functionality and an improved customer experience all feature as notably better than traditional phone systems. One of the most useful advantages is being able to work as if you are in the office, even when you are not. You can be located anywhere, and still receive your calls. We call this function 'Follow Me', a simple but ingenious function which allows your incoming calls to be diverted to your mobile when required. The caller has no idea you are not sitting at your desk. They have dialled your ordinary work number to reach you, and you receive the call to your mobile. There is nothing to indicate you are currently working from home, or on a site visit with another client, spending time with the kids, or sitting in the garden. Depending on the service you are subscribing to, there are a number of ways to achieve this. For instance, users of the SureVoIP® Hosted packages can set this up from their main 'Ring Group' (or from their personal 'Ring Group' if on our Fully Managed Hosted service). Our 'Follow Me' function will achieve the same thing. The number to forward to can be permanent, or changed as needed via the user's portal. Those who are not using our Hosted services can still use this function, we offer it as a stand alone package. There are other advantages of the 'Follow Me' function. Rather than needing to advertise two numbers (your office number and you mobile number) you only need one. The 'Follow Me' function will make full use of your mobile when you require it, but you only need to advertise your office number.   View our web-page on our Hosted VoIP Services View our web-page on Call Forwarding
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How To Move Office And Take Your Phones With You (The Easy Way)

02 June 2016 at 13:06pm
stock-photo-14804954-stressed-young-couple-relocation Moving office is a stressful time. You have decorators to arrange, furniture to move, files to transfer, and all while keeping your customers happy. VoIP users have the flexibility to take their telecoms set up wherever they go. As long as they have an internet connection, all the phones will just unplug from the old office, and plug in when in the new one. As the provider has all the details of the system (extension numbers, call routing etc) then the system will behave exactly the same in the new office as it did in the old one. Where your phone is physically based makes no difference to the system (we like to call this a platform). After all, your LinkedIn account doesn't care where you are – you just log-in from any internet connection. A VoIP system is just the same. All users of a Hosted ('Cloud-based' is just another way of saying 'Hosted' by the way) VoIP service can take advantage of this. Many people change where they work on a day-to-day or even minute-by-minute basis. Need to work from home for the rest of the afternoon? Simply unplug the phone from the internet, and plug in at home (although you can use a smartphone app, or buy two phones, if you want to save the hassle of carrying a phone with you). It is this flexibility which makes VoIP so appealing when it comes to managing an office move. If you are considering relocating your office, then moving to VoIP would be an ideal starting point. You can transfer existing numbers to your new VoIP account (termed “Porting”), and acquire new numbers with your new area code. We assist our customers in any way we can, including assisting with the transtition to a VoIP system, and helping to move and relocate existing equipment. We have also helped by specifying, supplying and setting up new equipment. Obviously, we can only provide this level of service to customers who are physically located near us, but we are happy to offer the benefit of our experience to customers based anywhere. To read more about SureVoIP's experience with Porting numbers, please see our Number Porting article. As the UK industry regulatory body, Ofcom offer their own advice on Number Porting.
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Benefits of VoIP for Flexible Working

26 May 2016 at 15:05pm
stock-photo-77804333-businessman-using-laptop-in-a-desert The workplace changes as worker's expectations change. One of the work benefits which employees now expect is the possibility of flexible working. Working parents, those with varying outside commitments, remote workers or those who job share can all benefit from taking part in flexible work arrangements. UK legislation requires companies to consider all flexitime working requests from employees. Do you or your employees need to work in a non-traditional set up, where a 9 – 5, office based role simply isn't accommodating enough? Do you have staff with children requesting to work around school hours, or change their hours depending on school holidays? Or those with other family commitments, who need to work from home for some of the week? How about remote staff who are autonomous, who need to integrate with office-based staff but also require a degree of flexibility? Or, given Aberdeen weather, how does your company cope with employees being snowed in? Should workers travel when it is unsafe, or can your company offer an alternative? If you face any of these issues, then a Hosted VoIP solution would definitely be worth considering. As long as workers have an internet connection, then they are reachable anywhere. Your “office” doesn't actually need to exist at all, calls can be transferred from one person to another, with the caller completely unaware that the two people are in different towns, or even different countries! You can work remotely from home and communicate with your customers as if you were in the office. Callers experience your menu system, or calls being transferred seamlessly, or hear music on hold, with nothing indicating you are anywhere other than at your desk. You can even present your office number to the people you call, giving that final professional touch. Make use of all the features of a business telecoms system, and present a more professional image, while working from wherever suits you.   To see the UK Government advice on flexible working, please click here. To see more on the features and benefits of our business-grade VoIP service, please click here.
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Is your telecoms provider holding your number hostage?

19 May 2016 at 12:05pm
Have you ever wanted to change telecoms provider but been unable to because they have your number hostage? Anyone with an existing number will be rightly worried about losing a number their customers have known for years. 'Number Porting' is the phrase you need to remember. Under Ofcom regulations, all telecom providers must allow you to move your number to a new provider (to 'Port' your number). This process is lead by the gaining provider, and your old provider has to allow it. Porting can prove useful in a number of scenarios, including:
  • To allow you to make use of the savings and increased functionality offered by a VoIP service. Keep your advertised number and move away from old-school phones and phone lines
  • Port over to a VoIP provider and keep your existing number, even if you move geographical area. BT will not allow you to retain your number if you move from your current exchange. Porting to VoIP will allow you to move wherever you want (down the road, working from the pub, the Bahamas, anywhere!)
  • Switching telecoms providers – take your number with you if you switch providers but need to keep an existing advertised number
  • Larger organisations looking to consolidate resources – moving communications to a central office but keeping contact details for pre-existing regional depots
  • Elderly parents going into a Care Home – all their friends and family will be able to reach them on the number they have had for years.
For more info on Porting generally, please see our website pages: http://www.surevoip.co.uk/products/number-porting and http://www.surevoip.co.uk/help-support/faq#n78 As the UK industry regulatory body, Ofcom oversee all porting regulations. Their website gives advice on the process. For further information, please see: http://ask.ofcom.org.uk/help/telephone/switching_provider and http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/telecoms/numbering/guidance-tele-no/number-portability-info/
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SureVoIP win Best Business ITSP (Medium Enterprise) 2016!

12 May 2016 at 08:05am

Dear all, I'm extremely happy to announce (if you haven't already seen my bombardment of pics on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook) that SureVoIP won the ITSPA Award for Best Business ITSP (Medium Enterprise) 2016 (that's in the whole of the UK!). SureVoIP - Best Business ITSP (Medium Enterprise) Winner 2016 SureVoIP - Best Business ITSP (Medium Enterprise) Winner 2016   It was a great afternoon in London. I knew there was a Highly Commended category, so was at least hoping for that, but when we won I couldn't believe it. My speech went like this:

We've never won anything like this before, but I'd like to thank all our Customers, Resellers and Partners for trusting us as their VoIP service provider and for their business. I'd like to thank the SureVoIP Team for all their hard work and finally I'd like to place a special thank you to all Open Source software projects. Without them, no telecom company would be in business.

Cheesy, but true! Let's not forget our news last month regarding the ITSPA Quality Mark and that we were also Finalists for Best Business ITSP (Corporate) and Best VoIP Infrastructure. So finally, thank you for trusting SureVoIP with your business communications service. Gavin. Notes: It was extremely tough competition, but the requirements were: Outline The company winning this category has provided the best all round voice service to medium size businesses. This company provides a good selection of business features, including multiple telephone numbers; call queuing as well as support for remote workers. Eligibility The Award is open to companies offering a VoIP service to medium size enterprises for more than 10 and less than 150 employees/seats. It must offer a full telephony service (including connectivity to and from the PSTN, using standard UK DID numbers and with access to the emergency services). Judging panel companies are not permitted to enter the application process. Entrance Requirements Entrants will be subject to a round of technical testing performed by Malden Electronics. Providing benchmark scores are met, the application will then proceed through the judging process based on the entrants written self-assessment. Scoring

  1. Business performance (25%) - This section should include details about how the service operates and how it has proven both popular with customers and successful for the business over the past twelve months. It should outline how it ensures the necessary business grade quality and resilience for Medium sized businesses and why it particularly provides value for companies of that size. Any details or information around how the business has grown in recent years are welcome.
  2. Innovation (25%) This section should outline how you differentiate your service to other competitors. It should also include details around new services launched and additional features integrated over the past twelve months.
  3. Customer Service (25%) This section should clearly outline the efforts the company provides to ensure excellent customer service. Details outlining the pre-sales approach to installation and in-life support and maintenance are required. An outline of your complaint handling procedures, your number portability policy and ways of communicating with the public (on your website or elsewhere) would be welcome.
  4. Case Study (25%) Provide a comprehensive example of how your service has been deployed successfully in practice over the past 12 months.

 

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SureVoIP a finalist in three ITSPA Award categories

27 April 2016 at 20:04pm
A big thank you to all our customers, resellers and partners! Without your success in business, we would not be here. It therefore gives me great pleasure to announce that SureVoIP has made the finalists’ shortlist for three 2016 ITSPA Awards!

Best Business ITSP (Medium Enterprise):

The company winning this category must provide the best all round voice service to medium size businesses. This company has to provide a good selection of business features, including multiple telephone numbers; call queuing as well as support for remote workers

Best Business ITSP (Corporate):

The company winning this category must provide excellent voice services to corporate businesses or other large organisations. This company must demonstrate impressive business performance, innovation and customer service and details an exemplary case study. This company has to provide a good selection of business features, such as multiple telephone numbers, call queuing and support for remote workers.

Best VoIP Infrastructure:

This award focuses on companies providing back end services for VoIP providers and equipment that is typically hosted at the ITSP’s Data Centre. All entrants must provide specifications for the relevant service or piece of equipment. The scope of the equipment will include Hard & Soft Switches, Gateways, Session Border Controllers, Firewalls, QoS enabled switches, etc. The SureVoIP IP Network is a finalist in this category. The Awards ceremony will take place on 11th May 2016 at The Deck, National Theatre in London.
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The importance of Perl at SureVoIP and why you should help all Open Source projects

20 April 2016 at 11:04am
At SureVoIP we use Perl for so many things that it forms a major part of our success. It is in fact critical for us. That is why we became a Gold Sponsor for the Perl QA Hackathon. What is the Perl QA Hackathon?
A free of charge coding workshop for people involved in Quality Assurance, testing, packaging, CPAN, and other projects related to quality assurance. The workshop is not necessarily exclusive to Perl projects, however, many of the attendees will be planning to work on projects that have a direct benefit to the Perl language. This year's Hackathon will be held at the The Rugby Hotel in Rugby, UK from April 21-24.
We use the language, various modules and projects powered by Perl for the following:   In summary, if you're a business or user that thinks phenomenal software projects like Perl and Open Source Software in general is free (quoted from this page):
Thus, “free software” is a matter of liberty, not price. To understand the concept, you should think of “free” as in “free speech,” not as in “free beer”. We sometimes call it “libre software” to show we do not mean it is gratis.
then you need to understand that in fact all Open Source projects need to receive funding from somewhere. That "somewhere" should be you too! :-) Please help any project you use by donating to them. Thanks, Gavin.
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SureVoIP on LINX and 2015

15 March 2016 at 16:03pm
Just a short post covering some of the things that went on in 2015 via a nice case study we did with LINXSureVoIP on LINX Case Study Since joining LINX in 2014 and expanding over to IXScotland and IXManchester in 2015, SureVoIP have recorded an increase of 65% in turnover on their 2014 year end. 2016 looks to be an exciting year for its existing as well as new customers and partners, as this means more funds are being re-invested for enhancements and innovation.
“We’re a small operator, with low important traffic, but have had to date, a very exciting and interesting self-funded and fully-owned journey with lots of friends made and help from others along the way.”
SureVoIP_on_LINX How did LINX help? Gavin Henry, Managing Director of SureVoIP explains;
“This has been our best year, with LINX really bringing value via two examples I can tell you about. One proving our technical prowess, leading to a much bigger order with an existing customer. Another being the resilience and low traffic latency LINX enables, allowing us to demonstrate to a customer that they could trust us with their whole corporations VoIP traffic. The former allowed us to directly reach out to much bigger network operator NOCs and be taken seriously with our fault finding. We wouldn’t have that level of access and respect without being a LINX member. This in turn has allowed us to expand our team and invest in becoming a true telecom operator via the SS7 network.”
SureVoIP relate much of this success to peering and will happily give technical and non-technical evidence (friendly community, NOC contacts, traceroutes, sector awareness, legal policies etc.) to anyone that wishes to learn more. They consider the network operator and peering sector, especially LINX, as a community which all depends on the co-operation of everyone in order to make the Internet work.
Gavin concluded; “LINX has really made our network one of the best out there and we have won some pretty well known names due to the quality of our phone calls and attention to detail for doing things right.”
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Free voicemail to email for all UK Businesses affected by Flooding

04 January 2016 at 20:01pm
To try and help, even a little, for those businesses hit hard by the flooding in the UK at present, SureVoIP would like to offer a free geographic telephone number with voicemail to email. What: If you are part of or own a UK based business which is affected by the present flooding, then SureVoIP would like to offer you free voicemail to email. Why: If your business offices are flooded, your traditional telecoms will be down and you will be unable to take calls. Even if you forward calls to mobiles you will have to dial your voicemail and listen to them. This is slow, unmanageable and adds additional stress. How:
  • SureVoIP will give you a phone number for free
  • You can record your own message
  • The message left by your customer will be emailed as an attachment to a mailbox of your choice (group mailbox works best)
  • Any member of your team can then listen to it and respond
  • All the callers details are contained in the email so you can quickly find their number and call back
  • The phone number can take at least 10 calls at once
Please contact us to use this service. We hope it can help. Thanks, Gavin.
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Donation to Gathimba Edwards Foundation

11 December 2015 at 16:12pm
Dear all, As some of you may know (those that I have met), my son Ben (11) has Cerebral Palsy and is wheelchair bound and can not talk. He is a happy boy and very lucky to have been born in the UK. There are other children with the same or similar life limiting conditions that are not so lucky. This led my wife and I, on a personal level, working with Myles Edwards and the Gathimba Edwards Foundation. We helped a similar boy to Ben and their family in Kenya and this year we have chosen help, albeit in a small way, from a business point of view. Instead of Christmas cards to all our customers, we've donated that money to the Gathimba Edwards Foundation. This has enabled a family to get such a simple thing as beds:
Monica Jepkorir shared this torn foam mat and bed with 4 of her children Faith, Jelegat, Victor and Kevin whilst her oldest son Nelson sleeps on the floor. Monica is HiV positive and sadly lost her husband from the same disease last year. She is incredibly humble, appreciative and hardworking. We recently cleared all their school fee debts but also wanted to improve their living conditions. Thanks to SureVoIP we have been able to buy them a double decker double bed, mattresses, blankets, bed sheets, cutlery, pots, solar lights, plates and pillows. 12355076_10207999212602905_1194915929_n 12336259_10207999212522903_1848232582_n Please visit our Facebook page for regular updates on the children we are supporting: https://www.facebook.com/GathimbaEdwardsFoundation If you wish to make a donation you can do so here: http://www.totalgiving.co.uk/charity/gathimba-edwards-foundation - a little goes a long way in Kenya, with £5 paying the tuition fees of a primary school pupil for 6 months and £1 feeding a child for 2 days.
Thanks for reading, Gavin.
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