Communication Infrastructure | What Is SIP Calling and SIP Trunking?

Communication infrastructure forms the backbone of any business. The quality of communication between customers, co-workers, suppliers, and stakeholders has a direct impact on the success of a business. Therefore, effective communication, such as communication channels formed through telephones, is essential.

Whenever an employee has a problem, they need to discuss it with their supervisor or colleagues, often fast. For that reason, a phone system is crucial for a business. It is both reliable and cost-effective and is a key factor when it comes to delivering great customer service.

The Business Telephone System

A business telephone system is not comparable with a regular landline as it comes with a number of crucial features, such as:

– Multiple extensions for individual phones.
– The ability to transfer, hold and log incoming and outgoing calls.
– The ability to record calls (e.g. for quality control and training purposes).
– Call queuing as well as hold music and messages for when too many calls come in at once.

Traditionally, this used to take place via a private bench exchange or PBX system, which connects company phones with the public switched telephone network or PSTN. While some businesses rely on the traditional copper-cabled ISDN networks for their telecom services, modern telecoms are evolving.

The traditional ISDN is set to be close by 2025 and is supposed to be followed up with internet-based voice calls via a fibre network. Communication infrastructure is therefore going digital. Using SIP trunks is one other way to be able to send and receive calls using an IP network instead, by for example going through the internet or private network.


What Is SIP Calling?

Session Initiation Protocol, or SIP, is one of the protocols that can be used for VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) communications. VoIP allows you to make phone calls using a broadband internet connection rather than relying on analogue phone lines.

SIP calling works by routing your calls over the internet in a similar way to how images, sound, and documents are transferred. This takes place by transforming voice signals into data that the recipient’s device can then decode.

What Is SIP Trunking?

Traditionally, trunking referred to the collection of cables that were linking local telephone exchanges. Nowadays, SIP trunking forms the digital alternative to a traditional phone line. It essentially is a virtual phone line installed over an internet connection, linking the PBX and the standard phone network. The SIP trunk carries the call data where once an analogue phone line would have been.

When Can You Use SIP?

SIP trunking can be used in a vast number of cases to deliver call data from one endpoint to another, forming your business’ communication infrastructure. In a business setting, you might see connections including:

– One cloud-phone system to another cloud-phone system
– Cloud-phone system to non-cloud phone system
– An internal IP PBX to the external PSTN network
– An IP PBX to a softphone system

Session Initiation Protocol is not restricted to SIP calling, as it is also compatible with other telephone services. So, moving over to using SIP will not negatively impact how your calls are being delivered.

What Are the Benefits of SIP Trunking?

SIP is not only meant to replace the traditional ISDN, but it can also enhance your business communications. Besides modernising your telecommunication system and communication infrastructure, SIP trunking comes with a lot of additional benefits.

1. Cost Saving

SIP trunks are more cost-effective than their traditional ISDN counterparts. IP connections are cheaper than traditional lines in terms of rental and call costs. This means, the costs of running a business or department which makes a lot of outbound calls, such as a sales company, will be cheaper.

2. Scalability and Flexibility

Once SIP trunking is set-up, it is easy to add in more lines. SIP trunks can easily be scaled up or down depending on your business needs. As there is no need to physically add ISDN lines, businesses are a lot more flexible and will not be left paying for capacity that they are not currently using.

3. Location Flexibility

Due to the physical connecting of traditional ISDN lines, they are restricted to one location. SIP trunking, on the other hand, does not have the same limitation. You can keep the same phone number when moving offices or even countries. This is not only convenient, but it is also good for keeping a consistent service to your customers.

4. Unified Communications

It is easier to manage and maintain one system than multiple ones, which makes SIP trunking ideal, as it allows you to unify your communications in one solution. Calls, text, emails, video conferences, and instant messages can all happen over the same network, reducing the number of systems in place and decreasing the chance of complicated IT issues.

5. Reactive in Disaster Recovery

If the worst were to happen and your phone lines went offline, SIP trunking makes it possible for you to divert your calls to a new system immediately. This way there will not be an impact on your business operations and downtime can be avoided. It is a positive move for business continuity and can help your business recover more quickly.

What Does SIP Trunking Mean for Your Business?

The traditional way of connecting a business’s OBX to the wider PSTN is being phased out and even with the more modern IP-based system, there still needs to be a mean to connect to the wider network. This is where SIP trunks come in. SIP trunks are becoming the industry standard when it comes to connecting business telephone networks over the internet, offering businesses a range of benefits over their traditional predecessors.

Good communication infrastructure is crucial for the success of a business, which is why Astec IT has been responsible for Mobile Device Management as well as the implementation of VoIP calling systems for clients operating in different industries in the past. As an example, one of Astec IT’s client operating in the charity sector had lost critical access to more than 200 mobile devices which required a unique, robust, and reliable solution. After resolving the issue and through the creation of support videos for self-service, the business was able to recover the cost and increase both productivity and reach.

If you are interested in finding out more about communication infrastructure or looking into outsourcing your IT department, make sure to contact us now for a free IT consultation.

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