How To Monitor Hosted PBX

If you are still using an on-premises based PBX, you’re likely already aware that it’s a pretty simple matter to monitor that phone system. What if you have a need to monitor, though, and you’ve already made your move to a hosted VoIP system? Some kind of monitoring system must be in place so as to provide for visibility of networking services, prediction of performance trends, fast troubleshooting of problems when they do crop up, and in order to offer a guarantee of efficient service. It’s all crucial for the businesses already involved in the VoIP telephony space, and also for the organizations getting ready to join them, as VoIP market growth shows no signs of slowing down. Larger enterprises are switching over to VoIP systems, and even consumers are moving to the Internet for their voice services.

Simply put, end-to-end monitoring of cloud based or hosted VoIP calls is a better way of ensuring call quality, according to many providers of QoS solutions and VoIP monitoring software.

How Do VoIP Monitors Work ?

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The way it works is the monitoring solution replicates calls to an end-users SIP device. This way the monitoring software can analyze the call response in order to discover the connectivity pattern of VoIP system services. If and when a problem is detected, the VoIP monitoring software’s notification module will send an alert to the designated network operator through any or all designated means: email, SMS or phone call. The monitoring systems can also show a live dashboard interface, providing real-time status reports on network health, connectivity status, and so on. This will show the operator enough detail — through drilling down, of course — to directly address any errors happening. This kind of reporting functionality will include charts for VoIP management purposes, historical reports, as well as information for keeping up with any service level agreements (SLAs) that you might have.

Weak VoIP performance and VoIP downtime are anathema for business; they directly impact things such as business profitability, revenue and performance. Therefore, a good VoIP monitoring solution is central to solving these problems before they happen, not picking up the pieces after they explode in your face. Realizing the goal of successful VoIP calling requires that multiple components that depend on each other all work together properly — and these are all thing that are out of the direct control of your enterprise.

Quality of Service

Another component that’s crucial to VoIP monitoring is Quality of Service monitoring (QoS). Most companies that offer monitoring packages also offer QoS solutions as well, which manage VoIP QoS in real-time throughout all of the converged voice environments that are critical to your business. These are often integrated with the dashboards mentioned above, so they can provide the management intelligence required to narrow down VoIP UC and QoS problem areas so they can be resolved.

Many companies may not be using their available bandwidth well, or may need an upgrade. VoIP monitoring is an excellent way of determining this. If calls are getting dropped, or if QoS is low, or if packets are getting lost due to network shortages, then it may be time to look at widening the pipe that you’re using. A single VoIP conversation will require about 56 kilobits a second to sound clear and smooth; multiply that by the number of users you have, double that for overhead, video and other Internet usage, and you have a rough estimate of how much bandwidth you’ll need.

Overall, VoIP monitoring is an exceptional way to gain unprecedented insight into business, see performance trends, preserve continuity of business, and maintain success.

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