BEFORE You Upgrade Your Phones…Know this

Messages-on-Hold (MOH) is as vital to your business as ever…and that should be a consideration when selecting the right phones or phone system. Illinois Audio Productions (IAP) can  easily configure the audio, but there are a few things you should know about the compatibility between phone systems and MOH play back options.

Compatibility Match-Up Dilemmas…and Solutions

The biggest transition in telephonic technology has been the inception of Voice Over Internet Protocol or VoIP as well as cloud-based phone systems. However, clients using external MOH players may quickly discover those units don’t match their new system. Some VoIP and Cloud systems are compatible. But more often than not, On-Hold productions need to be provided in uploaded audio files. It’s a solution IAP can make even easier and more convenient.

It should be noted than most telephony formats required by these systems are much lower quality than those that utilize an external MOH player.

Potential issues with MOH player compatibility are important for smaller businesses to consider BEFORE buying two to four-line phones at big box stores. Very few of these phones are on-hold compatible. Right now, only TWO models carry Messages-on-Hold capability that are not true PBX systems. Consult with IAP prior to buying a big box system OR upgrading to VoIP/Cloud phone systems. That way, your MOH transition stays as seamless as possible!

The Differences to Expect in MOH Playback  

Traditionally, Messages-on-Hold playing through an external unit have been in some loop form. Whether loaded digitally from tape, CD, USB stick, MP3, wav file, or remotely, the replay concept is basically a four to six-minute loop format.

Be aware that some VoIP/Cloud-based systems limit recording length. With Avaya IP Office, MOH productions need to be wrapped into 90 seconds or less. However, there are still possibilities for a workaround with IAP external players and Avaya IP Office.

Xfinity/Comcast systems allow two minutes of MOH audio. But playback through these systems is “sequenced,” meaning the entire production starts from the beginning with each call. That’s less desirable than looped audio from our external player which placed holding callers into the “loop” giving every individual message equal playtime. “Sequenced” Messages-on-Hold can give callers a heavy dose of the audio’s beginning and significantly less of the entire production toward the end.

These “sequenced” type messages get stale for callers quickly, especially repeat callers hearing the same limited portion. IAP has a solution. If you have a VoIP system with a short MOH recording time or a sequenced system that starts over constantly, consider changing messages more frequently to keep them effective, timely, and fresh.

IAP is always glad to help…and that goes especially if you’re still deciding on a phone system upgrade!