A PBX has been the backbone of business telephony for well over 25 years. It’s the number one way to get your business connected to clients and suppliers.

‍But what actually is a PBX, and how does it work?

PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange – you might know it as the ‘box on the wall’ that runs your business’s phone and communications system.

They’ve been around for many years and were originally designed for larger companies that needed to handle hundreds of different extensions.

A PBX takes all of your company’s incoming and internal calls and automatically routes them to the required extensions and users.

As technology has advanced over the years the PBX has become a practical and cost-effective solution for most smaller businesses and organisations too.

PBX phone systems operate with a series of features that you just don’t get with a ‘normal, stand-alone landline’, including:

  • Extensions for individual phones
  • Call holding and transferring
  • On-hold music and queue systems
  • Call recording and call logging
  • Contact lists
  • The ability to see who is busy on a phone call or available

How does a PBX work?

A PBX phone system allows users to communicate internally and externally, using different connection channels such as traditional analogue, ISDN or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).

IP telephony, or ‘VoIP’, uses the internet to make and receive calls, massively cutting your costs by reducing the number of lines you require.

Modern PBX systems can be configured to suit your business’s own specifications and unique requirements and, thanks to IP telephony, they’re constantly evolving and offering more features to your business. ‍

Do I need a PBX for my business?

If your business or organisation has telephones that you use frequently, and you may need to put a call on hold before transferring it to a colleague, then a PBX or IP PBX is the right choice for your business.

Whilst traditional PBXs or IP PBXs are reliable, robust and full of the features that a business may need, we now see these same features in cloud telephony and cloud hosted systems too.

Alternatives such as a hosted PBX or hosted telephone system are now the most widely chosen option organisations of all sizes as they are more cost-effective and now, as feature-rich as traditional or IP PBX solutions.‍

Occasionally a client may still wish to retain an on-premise system but connect to SiP trunks (cloud phone lines). This is possible, meaning that a client still has the choice of what solution they’d prefer to implement.

What is a hosted PBX?

A hosted PBX, or hosted phone system, uses the cloud to handle the complicated telephone stuff, utilising the internet to access and store all of the necessary data and software to run the system, instead of having a physical box in your office.

‍Hosted systems are a great solution for businesses of any size, giving you VoIP telephony at a low monthly cost per user.

Read more about the similarities and differences between hosted and traditional phone systems here.

The right phone system is a tremendous asset for any business – whether a traditional PBX, an IP or VoIP system or a fully-hosted cloud telephony solution is the right choice for you,

staying connected is an incredibly important part of modern business – and no firm needs to suffer from poor communications infrastructure.

If you would like to learn more about how a PBX phone system could save your organisation money, Time Communications would be happy to talk you through the options available to you. Contact Time Communications’ expert team on 0113 2059640, you can request a callback on our home page, email at [email protected] or message us here.