Top 10 considerations for IT Directors- VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol)

1) How many sites will the solution comprise?           

IT servicesOne of the key areas of a telephony solution set up includes reviewing the sites you have and will consider to become connected under such a service. Monitoring call traffic and the number of channels at each site are key areas to review thus making sure you are prioritising multiple sites and home workers in to a proposed topology.  One core benefit of hosted voice services is that this service is footloose, meaning that all mobile and remote workers can plug and play their handset into any internet connection and correspond via the licenses / telephone CLI they use at their HQ or desired site.                   

2) Confirm how many users are at each site and plan for future expansion

It is obvious to look at your future growth incentives when panning your hosted infrastructure, what’s most important here is to consider priority across your sites and the current circuit capacity. Hosted voice solutions require higher bandwidth availability so it is important to understand that the minimum speeds for hosted services is 48kbps. If you are considering an HD hosted voice solution then you will have an enhanced quality of service and require a 100mb circuit.

3) Will the solution be converged or dedicated?

Consider that if this is to be a converged Voice and Data Solution or indeed dedicated for voice that enough bandwidth is calculated at each site to accommodate both topologies.

4) Your WAN guidelines for multi-site solutions

If using existing WAN services it would be prudent to use these guidelines to calculate the required bandwidth. – For normal good voice quality the required speeds per call is 65kbps. – Record your speed test and note the make and model of your existing or desired router.  – It will also be insightful to include information about your incumbent WAN provider so the Hosted Voice / VOIP specialist can determine the best course of action regarding switch over, carrier partnerships and external core location set up options.

5) Is there an existing IP address format across the sites?

Include your breakdown of IP addresses at each site to your topology and again it is best practise to plan for existing and future expansion across your organisation.

6) An existing network diagram should be provided to help gather crucial information that can only be sought from the proprietor and or externally managed offices.  VoIP Network Diagram


7) Carryout a site survey

This survey should to confirm there are enough Cat5 points to support all the new VoIP handsets & any VoIP peripheral devices.


8) Whether the PC’s are to be connected in the back of the handsets or have dedicated Cat5/6 or 7 sockets it is essential to use the following guidelines;

If you are using existing internet circuit & PC’s that are piggybacked off the VoIP phones it is essential to keep good voice quality across your network by conducting a VoIP audit and Speed /Capacity Test. Conduct a full QOS, so to prioritise your Voice whilst also establishing a V-LAN separation ratio.  This will make sure you prioritise enough bandwidth for your entire network – both data and voice.

9)  If using your existing data switch, please make sure the power rating will comfortably handle all the phones connected simultaneously.            

If not & a specialist can supply a new POE switch. Please make sure there is enough space & power in the existing Structured Cabinet to accommodate this.

If not – a new switch model will need to be acquired to accommodate all POE phones comfortably with room for expansion. A specialist will have numerous options for you with varying costs that can be set across different finance agreements, both Opex and Capex.

10) If this process is not to your liking you can proceed with local power adaptors across your network.

Please make sure there sufficient power sockets for all usable handsets.

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