Product: RingCentral Professional.
RingCentral Professional is a cloud based virtual telephone service designed for SMBs and startups that are looking for a professional inbound call answering service. Today many small companies, especially tradesmen who will work predominantly on customer locations require that they use their personal mobile phones business calls. This is a good solution for mobility, ease of use and convenience; however, it is far from perfect. The problems are that the customer needs to call the personal number of the mobile phone, which is not very professional and secondly they might call that number at any time, which is then inconvenient to the businesses employee. Thirdly, and probably of greater concern if the employee is a salesperson, they could take the entire customer base with them should they leave.
How Professional Works
RingCentral’s Professional solution is to address these issues by providing the customer with a real business number – or you can port an existing one. RingCentral will then handle any incoming calls to that number and transfer the call to another pre-configured phone, such as a landline or a mobile phone. The advantages are that the business and employees keep their mobile phones and the flexibility and mobility they require but the customer calls the business number. RingCentral will then handle the call transfer –ensuring that a call never goes missed by passing any unanswered extensions to voicemail. Furthermore, by utilizing an auto-attendant the caller is greeted with a customized business greeting – and an out of hour’s message if required, so that their calls can be diverted to voice-mail.
Available Business Numbers
RingCentral’s Professional service offers the choice of toll-free numbers, local numbers, and vanity numbers and can increase your company’s visibility through listing the business number in local and national directories. For example, your new business number will be available to anyone that calls 411.
RingCentral Professionals Features
Professional does more than just handle incoming calls and transfer them to an extension or voice-mail. There are some rich custom routing and rules, which can be applied to incoming calls, such as transferring VIP customers directly to a personal mobile. Alternatively, you could set operational hours and perhaps give each employee or department his or her own operating hours. Furthermore, you could schedule routing for sales calls to go to one employee during the day and another in the evening. There are many rules and schedules that are easily configurable from any PC or web connected device.
Similarly, managing call forwarding is simple and easy so you can configure your extension to be diverted to your mobile, a hotel, your home phone or a customer site. In addition, you can have Professional ring them all simultaneously or in a set order. Any call that goes unanswered Professional will then diverted to voicemail. This is extremely flexible and you can forward to up to ten numbers through the web administration portal. A neat feature is Unconditional Call Forwarding, which will bypass any of the standard setting and go straight to a number that you chose for priority call forwarding.
Professional also provides call screening and before the call is answered the caller ID will be displayed on the mobile phone, if using a landline you could configure the auto-attendant to prompt the caller for a name. There is also a Dial-b-Name Directory service, which allows callers to type in an employee’s name on their mobile phone keypad in order to find an extension. This again is very flexible and you can exclude and include participating staff with a click of a button in the admin web portal.
Call recording is another great feature of Professional, you can record as many as 100,000 recordings per account, and these remain available for download or playback for 90 days. Another administrative tool is Call Logs, which provides analytics for the whole system, showing what calls were made, from which extension and to whom, the call duration, costs and other business metrics.
Voicemail is also feature-rich with customizable greeting and you can receive notifications of voicemail and missed calls via email. You can also access voicemail from any phone as voice or from a computer or Smartphone as email attachments through visual voice-mail.
Previously Fax was a problem with virtual systems but not anymore, as Professional provides an always-on fax service. RingCentral handles all incoming faxes so you will never miss a fax and you can send one from Microsoft office or email, you simply attach a file and a cover note and it is ready to send.
Similarly, Professional integrates with Outlook and that is a big bonus for sharing contacts and numbers between applications using ring-out. Here you can just click on an Outlook contacts phone number to make a call. You can also send attachments and files from Outlook to contacts on your Professional’s contacts list. This two-way integration is great for productivity and efficiency. In addition, RingCentral Professional also integrates with Box, the cloud storage service, which enables you to send faxes using documents stored in the Box cloud storage.
Mobile Apps and Desktop Softphone
RingCentral Professional has mobile apps for iPhone/iPad and Apple Watch they also have one for Android devices. You can using the apps make and receive calls using the business number, as well as send and receive faxes. Also, you can configure the system using the mobile apps and check visual voicemail.
If however, you prefer to work from a desktop PC there is also a Softphone application available that provides full functionality all that is required is a headset to make and receive calls.
Prices & Plans
RingCentral Professional comes in three editions:
- Pro – $12.99 (supports 2 extensions, 300 local long distance or toll free minutes, 4.9c per additional minutes)
- ProPlus – $19.99 (supports 5 extensions, 1000 local long distance or toll free minutes, 4.4c per additional minutes)
- ProPower – $24.99 (supports 10 extensions, 2000 local long distance or 1000 toll free minutes, 4.9c per additional minutes)
ProPlus and ProPower also come with a Dedicated Fax number and Dial by name directory.
RingCentral Professional is an ideal solution for the SMB, entrepreneur or startup looking for an easy to use and feature rich virtual phone system. It comes at a competitive price and is an affordable system for the small business that requires mobility. It also has inbound/outbound internet fax as well as several handy integrations with Box, Outlook and Microsoft Office to increase productivity. Furthermore, you can choose between local or toll free numbers or keep your existing number at no extra cost.
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