If Mark Twain was alive and asked about hard phones, he would probably say something like “The rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” The places I have installed hard phones even astound me and likely they are still there decades later. No doubt the softphone providers think that mobile smartphones will replace all hard phones. I prefer hard phones as many of the telephones I installed were in jails and other “hard” environments where a desk phone would certainly not last even a day. On manufacturing floors, clean rooms, chemical factories, prisons, mines, hospitals and other place you have to be tough to last.
Meanwhile AudioCodes a maker of deskphone put a new white paper on uses for deskphones. It’s worth a good read to share with those who think their smartphone will go everywhere they need go.
Here some highlights – click on image for complete white paper. Some of the key needs for deskphones include:
1. Sitting arrangements of employees
Depending on the sitting arrangements of your workers, the needs may vary.
* Workers in the open space most of the time will require high level headsets with noise cancelation because of the noisy environment surrounding them. In such a case, you will use the headset either with a soft phone, desk
phone or both, depending on your needs. “Hot desking” in the open space environment where workers may need to share phones is becoming an increasingly popular phenomenon. These
workers may prefer to have their own personal headsets for hygienic reasons.
* In common areas, a desk phone is required because many people are using the phone and a more robust and solid platform is needed.
* In a single-person office, the most convenient communication method may be on a speaker phone, rendering the desk phone the best option.
* In a shared office space, using a speaker phone may bother the other person in the room. However, the choice remains whether
a soft phone or a desk phone would be more appropriate and headsets can work with either option.
* Road Warriors by definition need to have headsets and softphones as the desk phone isn’t portable. Headsets for these workers will
be sturdier, will have better noise cancellation and acoustics but will also be more costly.
2. Type of workers
* High turnover workers – If your work staff tends to turnover relatively quickly, you may prefer a desk phone to reduce costs as new employees typically won’t accept used headsets, while desk
phones may be cleaned and transferred easily.
* High Tech Savvy vs more Traditional or Young Guns vs Silver Foxes – For the most part, the younger and more high-tech savvy your workers are, the easier they will adapt to new technology. You may want to offer these younger workers the choice of a desk phone or a soft phone. However, for the more traditional workers, desk phones are the path of least resistance.
Bottom-line – Get serious about hard phones and their never-ending uses and applications. Maybe someday when Apple and Samsung come up with a smartphone for a jail I will eat my words, in the meantime hard phones do the job no others can. We at Boulder Phone are also prepared to install your telephones anywhere you need them to go.