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Checklist for Moving from Your Old Phones to a Cloud PBX

If you’re searching checklists for upgrading to a virtual PBX, chances are you’re trying to untangle yourself from fraying wires, stubborn spiraling cords – all while imagining deleting that awkward 10-year old phone greeting. It’s time to smooth the rest of the journey to business VoIP solutions.

The hardest part is already over. Grab your pen and pad (iPad?) and get ready to cut your prep time in half. Here’s the checklist.

  1. Check Current Contract End Date – If you’re terminating your contract before its pre-determined end date, check for:
  • Early termination requirements (i.e., advance written notice).
  • Early termination fees.
  1. Research Potential Providers – Make a list of questions to ask potential providers to find one that fits all your business’s needs. (Consult this list of questions to get started). When vendor shopping, look for common red flags:
  • Reviews claiming the provider billed for services never requested or received.
  • Contracts that prevent the client from downgrading service.
  • Contracts that don’t require providers to give notice when raising rates.
  • Termination clauses with unreasonable cancellation fees.
  • Providers that do not offer on-site installation or training services – these are crucial to a smooth transition.
  1. Take Inventory of Office Phone System Equipment:
  • Phone numbers.
  • Lines and users.
  • Fax lines.
  • Alarm lines.
  • Credit card machines.
  • Emergency lines.
  • Handset devices, including their make and model.
  • Landline infrastructure.
  1. Assess Needs – As you take stock of your current assets, determine whether your business’s needs have changed: does it need more phone lines? Fewer handsets? Consider these needs when talking with potential providers.
  1. Give Termination Notice – Follow your contract’s guidelines if possible – many require written termination notice 30-60 days before contract end date.Give advance notice when switching to a cloud PBX.
  1. Sign New Contract
  1. Purchase New Equipment – Your hosted PBX provider will advise on what equipment to purchase for your new business phone system. Discuss any needs you identified while taking inventory; from receptionist modules to integrated door-entry systems, VoIP’s extensive offerings are designed to keep businesses functioning at full capacity.
  1. Dispose of Old Equipment – Ask your provider if any of your equipment is reusable; go green by donating or reselling the rest rather than throwing it away.
  1. Check Internet & Bandwidth – Confirm with your provider that your configurations will support your new phone system.
  1. Schedule Installation – VoIP is relatively equipment-light and does not require extensive setup; however, we advise scheduling installation during a low-traffic interval with time for training.
  1. Form Disaster Recovery Plan – Work with your provider to develop a back-up plan in case of outages and emergencies.
  1. Arrange Training Sessions – Organize phone system training soon after installation to avoid knowledge gaps or productivity downturns. Ask your VoIP provider if they offer training services—many do!
  1. Port Out Numbers – To continue using the same phone numbers, ask your new provider to port out old numbers (carriers are legally required to comply). Some will even use call forwarding to keep the transition seamless – no missed calls, no lost opportunities. If possible, try to port toll-free numbers in advance to avoid losing service.
  1. Convert Analog Lines – Develop a conversion plan with your provider to transition your other analog assets, including:
  • Fax connections.
  • Alarm systems.
  • Fire alarms.
  • Credit card lines.
  • Mailer/postage machines.
  1. Take a Deep Breath. You’re done! Sit back, relax and watch the calls come in unimpeded.

VoIP PBX systems are now the number one choice for businesses – and for good reason. Businesses using VoIP enjoy more advanced, modern solutions at a lower cost than landline-based ones. To learn more about how a virtual PBX makes employees and customers happy, check out our infographic on the top 10 benefits to 4Voice’s VoIP services.


Amruth Laxman

About the Author

Amruth Laxman

25+ years of telecom experience, specializing in high availability software and systems, I’ve seen the transformative impact they have on businesses. As the founding partner of 4Voice, I deliver customized, reliable phone solutions and can’t wait to share my insights with you in this blog.

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