By now, we’re all old hands at navigating Zoom’s meeting software. We’ve used Zoom to virtually attend everything, from classes and work meetings to happy hours and even baby showers. It has become a fixture of COVID-19 quarantine life, as familiar as Netflix’s recommended section or the inside of the fridge.
And yet, when we say Zoom, we’re mostly just referring to the Zoom Video Conferencing software. But, there’s another strategic part of Zoom — Zoom Phone. As familiar as you may be with Zoom Conferencing, what do you know about Zoom Phone?
Launched in January 2019, this cloud phone solution is further proof of Zoom’s vision to build a strong, reliable communications platform for customers around the world. It’s particularly valuable for remote workers, offering all the functions and features of an office phone. Now more than ever, a frictionless work-from-home (WFH) infrastructure is a must. So, what is the list of nifty features that allows Zoom Phone to stand shoulder to shoulder with the other top unified communications as a service (UCaaS) cloud phone systems?
- Caller ID: You (or your admin) can change your outbound caller ID. This feature is useful in a variety of ways, allowing you to choose which name or number is displayed for the receiver of your call.
- Internal integration: Zoom Phone is closely integrated with other Zoom products. Zoom Rooms can be assigned direct phone numbers as part of your Zoom Phone plan. If you make a call using Zoom Phone, you can quickly transform the call into a Zoom meeting — or merge the call into a concurrent meeting. You can also switch between two separate, simultaneous Zoom Phone calls or meetings at your leisure.
- Call monitoring: Zoom offers several call-monitoring features, access to which is decided by Zoom admins:
- Listen: Listen to a call without the parties being aware.
- Whisper: Speak to a phone user in a call without other parties being aware.
- Barge: Join a call and speak to all parties (the call will become a three-way call).
- Take over: Take over the call from a Zoom Phone user.
- Call delegation (aka shared line appearance): This feature allows users to assign others to handle calls on their behalf. For example, an executive can assign calling privileges to their assistant. An employee going on vacation can assign calling privileges to a coworker temporarily monitoring their accounts.
- Shared line group: Zoom Phone admins can create a shared line group, sharing a phone number and extension with a group of phone users or common area phones. All members have access to the group’s direct phone number and voicemail. Admins can also apply custom business or holiday hours to shared line groups.
- Shared accounts: Zoom Phone admins can share the voicemail inboxes of phone users, call queues or auto receptionists. This allows other users to play, delete and download shared voicemails. Shared inboxes can alleviate a lot of back-and-forth in the event of shared lines or delegations.
- Auto receptionists: This feature allows a bot to answer calls with a pre-recorded message, routing calls to an individual user, a queue, a common area phone or voicemail. They can also route to an interactive voice response (IVR) system to let the caller select routing options.
- External integration: Zoom Phone’s external integrations with contact center solutions use a private, multi-tenant Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunk, meaning any calls between Zoom Phone and contact centers are on-net so there are no public switched telephone network (PSTN) charges. Zoom Phone has partnered with a variety of top cloud-based contact center solutions, like Genesys, Five9 and Twillio.
- BYOC: Zoom’s Bring Your Own Carrier (BYOC) option — now officially referred to as Premise Peering — gives customers the ability to access all Zoom Phone features through existing PSTN trunks. Customers can keep existing contracts with their telco providers, thus preserving existing favorable dial-plan rates and contracts. This also means Zoom Phone can be accessed in any country, even where local services aren’t available yet.
- Search: Using T9 text input capabilities, Zoom Phone Auto Receptionist lets inbound callers search for a Zoom Phone user by name. This means nobody needs to know the direct number or extension of the person they’re calling.
Zoom Phone has a lot to offer — don’t make the mistake of underestimating Zoom! This short list is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Zoom Phone’s rapidly growing set of features and expanding presence in the market. Zoom Phone is a core platform extension of Zoom that every enterprise organization should keep in mind as part of an overall UCaaS phone system evaluation.
Learn more about how Unisys can help you optimize communication and collaboration in your digital workplace.