Does this situation sound familiar?
- You bought a Metaswitch a few years ago – in part because your previous switch was end-of-life and lacking in vendor support, and in part because you wanted to take advantage of all the benefits Voice-over-IP (VoIP) offers to service providers.
- You went through the Metaswitch commissioning process, you went through a PSTN migration to move all your SS7 links and trunks over to the Meta, and now your Metaswitch is humming along nicely.
- Perhaps you went even further – perhaps you went to the trouble of migrating all of your subscriber lines from your DMS / EWSD over to your new Meta, which meant that you could actually power off your old switch – saving a lot of money on power and creating enough space for a pool table (or three) in your CO.
- When you were finally finished with the migration you had a backlog of other projects that had been on hold, and anyway it made sense to let the new switch settle in for a bit – to make sure everything was working well… and so you never actually got around to trying out any of the new VoIP features available on your Meta.
If so, we’d like to share some of the ways we can help you get started with hosted PBX on your Metaswitch.
If you’d like to start offering hosted PBX to your business customers, we offer a free 30 minute consultation call as a good way to get a rough idea of your situation and what might be involved in launching this new product. On the call we’ll ask you questions about your business, questions about your goals, and then we can discuss the best path to launching hosted PBX on your Metaswitch (and how we can help). To get started, please fill out our contact form and be sure to put “Hosted PBX Consultation Call” (among other information) in the “What kind of help do you need?” field.
Hosted PBX Audit
After our initial consultation, we recommend getting started with our Hosted PBX Audit process – to make sure you have everything you need. If you sign up for this audit, we’ll do the following:
- Work with you to get remote VPN access and log-in credentials to your Metaswitch network.
- Review the Metaswitch products you have purchased so you can see what hosted PBX features you would have available and what limitations (if any) you’d have with your current software.
- Check whether all the applications are tied together correctly to support a hosted VoIP service, or if there are some roadblocks that need to be addressed before setting up a lab.
- Write a short report detailing our findings, including a project plan listing out the steps required to build out a lab environment.
- To finish we’ll hold a conference call with your team to discuss what we found and the next steps.
Fee: starts at $2500 for a small deployment
Build a Hosted PBX Lab
We recommend that anyone considering launching hosted PBX to customers starts with a lab. Not only does a lab validate technically that everything works, but it also allows your team to become familiar with all the available features, how best to combine them to provide the functionality customers want, and leaves you with a little internal deployment that can be used for troubleshooting even after you launch.
If you hire us to work with you on setting up a hosted PBX lab environment we’ll do some combination of the following.
- If necessary, we’ll resolve any of the blocking issues we found during the hosted PBX audit process.
- Install the relevant Endpoint Packs for phones that have been accredited by Metaswitch or certified by the phone vendor.
- You’ll ship us 3-5 phones and we’ll build a sample business group using these phones to demonstrate the key features available within your hosted PBX product.
- We’ll send them back to you, along with a script you can follow to demonstrate all the features on the phones in your lab.
- We may provide MOPs you can use to configure equivalent functionality for your customer business groups.
- We may create MetaView Web templates and Persistent profiles to make it easier to deploy future business groups from an operational/provisioning point-of-view.
- We may offer a site visit to set this up for you locally and to begin training your technicians (although this is no substitute for the official Metaswitch training classes).
- We may offer a period of support after the lab has been created, so you can easily ask for help if you run into any issues.
Fee: The fee for this service varies depending on what issues were found during the audit, and which combination of the above features you choose. We will create three options for you to choose from, once your audit is complete, but for budgetary purposes you should set aside somewhere in the region of $10K-$30K.
Scaling your Operations
Even after launching your hosted PBX product, you’re not out of the woods. Often it can be hard to make sure that what is sold by the sales team matches what can be easily provisioned by network operations. It’s also important that your provisioners are able to build new business groups efficiently, and that your Ops team is able to provide excellent technical support for any issues.
Bottom line: you want to provide a great experience to your customers, with a reasonable level of effort.
If you’re in this situation, and you need some help figuring out how to make this new product successful, please contact us and we can create a custom proposal for your specific situation.