Whilst we might only be in 2023, the time for the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) Switch Off is creeping up on us which means that businesses, regardless of whether they are a start-up, small business, or large corporation, need to start thinking about whether they need to switch their business telephony into a different service other than PSTN.
This is especially important for businesses who still currently utilise a PSTN-based system as this service will become futile in the coming years.
In this blog, we will cover what the PSTN Switch Off is, what it means for your business, and how you can better prepare your business for it.
What is the PSTN Switch Off?
Firstly, let’s explain what it is. The PSTN Switch Offrefers to the switching off of the service by BT Openreach in 2025, meaning that PSTN-based services will no longer be operating. This marks the UK’s migration towards internet-based services such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) when it comes to voice communications.
It is critical that businesses still using PSTN effectively switch to a VoIP service before PSTN is switched off in 2025 – whilst this may seem far away, your business might get extremely busy and thus it is possible that you might forget about switching before 2025 arrives.
The key benefits of switching to VoIP
There are a wide range of advantages that VoIP has which makes it excellent for business communications. In particular, its collection of advanced features that PSTN cannot provide, as well as its scalability capabilities and low-costs make it an excellent choice for your business telephony.
VoIP is more likely to be the popular option in today’s age where the majority of society is tech-savvy. The post-COVID business climate also calls for VoIP services, especially since such services enable voice and video conferencing of more than two people – something that PSTN lacks.
How to prepare
One report in 2021 has shown that only 8% of businesses in the UK are prepared for the PSTN Switch Off in 2025, which is less than 1 in 10 businesses – a significantly small figure. In another paper, 52% of businesses stated that they are aware of the PSTN Switch Off, but are yet to do anything about it within their business. For businesses with more than 51 employees, this figure rises to 56%.
So, how should businesses prepare and be ready for the PSTN Switch Off?
First and foremost, your business will need to migrate to a cloud-based phone system. The service that you choose is entirely dependent on your business’ needs, so it is important that you do your research when it comes to the different cloud-based services and what they can offer for your business.
As VoIP is reliant on the internet, it is also a good idea to make sure that your internet connectivity can accommodate VoIP at an efficient and effective rate. This may mean that for some businesses, they will also need to upgrade their internet service.
Another tip is to ensure that your employees are equipped with compatible devices that can connect to the internet and your integrated VoIP platform.