With Openreach’s ISDN and PSTN switch-off underway, many businesses around the UK have migrated from copper-based lines and traditional phone systems to modern, more resilient cloud-based alternatives, but how long did it take them? This blog looks at the timescales involved in researching, selecting, purchasing and deploying a new phone system.
Table of contents
For those businesses that haven’t yet begun to investigate migrating from ISDN and PSTN services, time is running out. With Openreach declaring all copper lines will be withdrawn by 2025, and with many areas across the country already undergoing the change, businesses could find themselves without a working telephone system sooner than they think.
We recommend businesses do not leave it until the last minute to consider their options. In fact, it is vital that a clear timeline be mapped out to ensure that not only do you give yourself time to make an informed choice, but also to make sure that any intended installation dates are met.
To plan correctly, you want to work backwards from your desired installation date:
3 months to go – initial supplier meetings and review proposals
Seek out potential suppliers and book initial meetings. This is a great opportunity to discuss your requirements and consider the options available.
- What phone system do you currently have?
- What is it about the current solution that does not meet your business needs (aside from the ISDN and PSTN switch-off)?
- What must-haves should your new solution include?
- Does it need to cater for remote or hybrid working?
- Is call recording a vital requirement?
- Do you need reporting features? And so on….
When your potential suppliers have submitted a proposal:
- Does the proposed solution meet your requirements for a new telephone system?
- Have they considered your budget?
This is your opportunity to ask questions and be confident that the new solution doesn’t just meet your current needs but will continue to work for your business in the future.
2 months to go – due diligence, take recommendations and present to the senior leadership team (SLT)
Before you enter into a contract, make sure you do your research and know who you are signing up with.
- Does the supplier have a good reputation and history in this industry?
- Can they provide testimonials from other customers or even case studies?
Make sure you know who you are signing up with.
Another timeline element to consider is your internal sign-off process - how long does it take for a project to come into effect?
- Does it just need sign off from the SLT? If so, how far apart are your SLT meetings?
- Are there other departments or stakeholders to consider?
6 weeks to go – agree T&Cs and place order
Terms and conditions have been issued and contracts are ready to sign. You are nearly there!
2 weeks to go – system installation
In an ideal world, system installation will occur with no interruptions and no snags, but it would be prudent to allow for any hiccups just in case.
- Do temporary measures need to be implemented during this transition period?
0 months to go – system go-live and training
You’re there! Now you can enjoy your new phone system and all the improved features included.
Upgrading a business phone system can often take longer than people realise. With ISDN and PSTN lines being withdrawn earlier than the 2025 switch-off deadline in some areas, businesses may be rushing their decision to ensure they have something in place. Make sure you leave enough time!
swcomms has nearly 40 years’ experience in the telephony sector and has already helped businesses across the UK beat the impending switch-off. We can either upgrade you to a cloud-hosted solution or to an on-premises system that supports SIP, which is the new type of internet-based phone lines.
We will take the time to listen to your requirements and help you build the best solution to suit your business. We can give a clear projection of the timescales involved and will give full support every step of the way to give peace of mind for everyone involved.
If you would like to discuss how your business can beat the ISDN and PSTN switch-off and upgrade your telephony to a more tailored, resilient, future-proofed solution, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me.
> Don't go too cheap and cheerful on your cloud-hosted phone system
> Solution: Business telephone systems
> Telecoms brochure