ITEXPO Q&A: Business Benefits of VoIP Still Very Relevant

By Stefania Viscusi

The emergence of VoIP technology has undoubtedly changed the business landscape. Not just to save time and money – but to completely alter and upgrade the way we communicate. No longer are we sitting wired to a desk with traditional phone systems trying to conduct business. As technologies advance we’re now having meetings via video conferences with partners and customers located across the globe – and we’re doing it for far less cost than ever imagined.

That’s essentially the name of the game today – making it easier for people and businesses everywhere to communicate.

beroNet, a German manufacturer of cloud managed VoIP hardware, does just that. The company is focused on delivering advanced telephony solutions that combine “the best of the Internet with the best of the existing fixed and wireless telephony infrastructure.”

The company, which was started by three engineers in 2002, will be present at the upcoming ITEXPO business technology event happening in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Feb. 8-10, 2017. There, it will have a chance to introduce the company to the U.S. market and will also be exhibiting its cloud-managed telecommunication appliance at booth #328.

To hear more, we recently caught up with CEO Christian Richter. Our exchange follows:

How have technology changes over the past 12 months helped businesses grow?

Technology changes are always a major driver in business growth. Especially in the IT and telecommunication field, the recent evolution to VoIP has not only improved the way companies work internally, but also how they work with their vendors and customers. The opportunities for new business in VoIP have increased. Many companies are deciding to move to VoIP, creating a huge demand for products and services.

What does the term Collaboration mean to your business?

We believe that collaboration is the key to success. Let me give you an example: our company is a small European manufacturer with roughly 20 employees. We collaborate with dozens of vendors, service providers, distributors and resellers to serve our customers all around the world. Without this form of collaboration, our business wouldn’t be nearly as large as it is today.

As a manufacturer for VoIP Access Devices and Telecommunication Appliances, we provide the technology for the communication needs of our customers. We believe that lean and effective communication is the perfect foundation for collaboration.

What elements of Unified Communications are most useful for your company?

Our Ticket System eliminates many tracking issues of email and is our communication channel between our customers, our sales and technical help team. Without our issue tracker, our development team would be lost. But most importantly, our VoIP PBX, the VoIP Phones and especially the Soft clients allow us to work remotely from home or while we travel.

Are you using messaging technologies to communicate with your customers?  How, or why not?

We believe that modern messaging technologies play a very important role in future communication. However it is currently not very easy to integrate popular messaging systems into a company. This is the main challenge that needs to be addressed in the near future.

To what extent are you using cloud services in your daily business processes?

About 30 percent of the software tools that we use are provided via cloud services. All these tools are intended to improve collaboration within our company and with partner companies.

Has your use of cloud-based resources increased over the past year?  Do you expect to make more use of cloud computing in the coming year?  Please elaborate.

We have implemented a cloud based document management system over the last year which eliminates a major part of our paper files. We expect to use more and more cloud tools in the future. The next tool will be an updated support ticket system.

What emerging technology has the potential to have a disruptive impact on businesses in the coming years?

My guess is that learning computer-systems will have the biggest impact in the coming years. Self-driving cars or devices which are controlled by natural language will change the way people live. Business products that use learning computer systems will reduce a lot of redundant work including time-consuming analytics tasks.

Today we get an excel export from our ERP system with our balance of the last year, to truly understand how the cost has evolved compared to the margin over the past three years is typically a task for a data analyst. I imagine that soon it will be able to ask this question in natural language and our ERP system should understand it and produce the right result within seconds. This improved process can lead to faster and better decisions.  Future advances such as this will also create new jobs like “neuronal-network-teachers.”

How has your business’ product development evolved over the past year as a result of emerging technologies?

Our development strategy has moved towards cloud managed devices (IoT) and virtualization. We believe that the management of network equipment should be cloud based. Also network equipment needs to be more intelligent in order to cope with upcoming emerging technologies.

What will you have on display at your booth and why should attendees make it a point to visit you at your booth?

At our booth, we have on display the world’s first cloud-managed telecommunication appliance. It features a Hypervisor which can be used to virtualize systems like an IP PBX, a fax server and a router. The hardware and the VMs can be controlled and monitored via our cloud service. The appliance is compatible with all traditional telephony interfaces like PRI, FXO and FXS, which makes it the turn-key solution for every small business.

What are you most looking forward to at ITEXPO 2017?

beroNet isn’t well known in the U.S. market yet. We are looking forward to networking with integrators, service providers, technology providers and sales channels. Also we want to learn more about emerging technologies that drive new business in the U.S. 

Edited by Alicia Young
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