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Multiple Location POTS Phone Service
Consolidate all the phone bills for your multiple business locations plus tools for telecom expense management.

By: John Shepler

Companies with many branch offices or other business locations spread out over the US, Canada and Puerto Rico can find themselves drowning in paperwork. Is it all the forms they need to file with the government? No, it’s just the phone bill... or should I say bills - lots and lots and lots of phone bills.

How Phone Bills Accumulate
How does this happen? It happens a little at a time. First the business is established in a single location. They order business telephone services and dedicated Internet and the bill or 2 bills arrive each month. The manager or someone delegated pours over the bill each month looking for charges that don’t belong there, services that are no longer used, or employee abuse of phone privileges.

Another Office, Another Provider Bill
Soon the need arises for a branch office in the next state. That office orders its own phone service and gets its own bills. Each month, management at that site spends an hour or so perusing the bill before submitting it for payment.

Many Offices, Many Separate Phone Bills
Now, multiply this activity by 10, 20, 100, or 1,000 locations. Similar paper bills come in on completely separate accounts from completely separate phone service providers. The same reviews are simultaneously conducted. All the bills are separately submitted for payment. Can’t this all be coordinated somehow to achieve greater efficiency? Not hardly. Every locations has its own arrangement with its own incumbent or competitive service provider. Since each account is unique, there’s no commonality to take advantage of.

Tools For Expense Management
Now, replace that horror scenario with a single vendor that serves all locations and consolidates all those bills into one bill. This vendor has tools available for Telecom Expense Management (TEM) to make auditing telecom bills, tracking disputes and managing contracts a far easier task. Think of the hours saved when your bills are consolidated.

Meet Ernest Communications
Who is this vendor? It is Ernest Communications, the nation’s largest telecom company that specializes in large multi-location POTS accounts through the United States. Ernest began in earnest, if you will, as a result of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 that opened the door to competitive local phone companies using the resources of the Public Switched Telephone Network. Since then, they’ve installed the facilities needed to give you reliable and affordable analog business phone service anywhere you locate.

Enterprise VoIP Can Be an Undertaking
Why analog? Isn’t the world going digital? True, large organizations are migrating to enterprise VoIP to converge their multi-location voice and data networks. This is a sophisticated process that offers cost and productivity improvements IF you can afford the capital expense involved and IF you have the resources to engineer, install and maintain the facilities.

Small Offices Have Only A Few Phones
Most smaller companies have only a handful of phones, maybe a dozen or two at each location. Some have only a single phone or a few multi-line desk sets that they picked up at the local office supply store. Their data network is a broadband connection to the Internet, if they even have one. What does the IT staff do all day? What IT staff?

Analog Phones Still Have Their Advantages
These businesses are quite happy with traditional analog telephony, also called POTS for Plain Old Telephone Service. It’s reliable, voice quality is excellent and pricing is reasonable for a few phone lines. This is where Ernest Communications excels. They can do something other companies can’t. They can get you analog phone service for all locations you have and then consolidate the bills and offer extra benefits like blocking of 3rd party charges, elimination of hidden fees and highly competitive long distance rates.

Local PRI Trunks For Your PBX
If one or more locations is large enough to have an on-site PBX system, Ernest can supply a dedicated local PRI service to bundle up to 23 outside lines on one standard digital trunk line that plugs right into a jack on your PBX box. Are you using both telephone and Internet? Ernest offers Integrated T1 circuits that combine 6 telephone lines plus dynamically allocated broadband data on a single T1 line. They supply the Integrated Access Device that makes this system work.

Phone Bill Consolidation To Save You Money
Could you benefit from having a single competitive service provider who can get you excellent rates for each of your business locations, with service customized to meet your requirements and a consolidated bill to make telecom management easier? If you have multiple locations dealing with multiple phone companies, you should get competitive quotes for analog POTS telephone, Integrated T1 and ISDN PRI service that covers all of your needs with easy inclusion of future business expansion.

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