A Guide to Cloud PBX Phone Systems for SMEs

Running a small business has its fair share of complications, and communication tends to be one of them. As Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) typically lack in terms of resources, they often don’t have much capital to invest in infrastructure. 

The advent of cloud PBX phone systems offers small businesses the ability to utilise technology that used to be only available to the big corporations of the world.

Read on to learn about the various options SMEs have when it comes to cloud technology.

Table of Contents

  1. Do SMEs need phone systems?
  2. Why should small businesses invest in cloud based phone systems?
  3. How cloud PBX works for SMEs
  4. Frequently Asked Questions

Do SMEs need phone systems?

Most businesses are looking to scale their operations at some point. Small businesses are usually the ones with the greatest need to expand their operations. Telephony technologies, previously only available to large corporations, are increasingly becoming available at affordable costs to businesses as small as 1 person through the cloud. 

Maintaining and improving your communication is an important aspect of scaling your operations, along with streamlining contact with prospective and existing customers. In this sense, SMEs can greatly benefit from having a robust telephone system with all the features available.

Additionally, having a good communication system can streamline communication between a business and customers. Good communication is key as it can position your organisation as trustworthy and improve your ROI.


What’s the best type of phone system for a small business?

Choosing a phone solution is a decision which shouldn’t be taken lightly, as your decision will greatly impact business operations.

There are three types of business phone systems for small companies to choose from: 

Despite all being relatively affordable, PBX and VoIP systems are typically the best for small businesses, as they’re easier to scale.

Cloud PBX systems are becoming more prevalent as they provide more control than a KSU system and can have more advanced features, such as auto-attendant.

The other thing driving growth, within the UK, of cloud telephony is the end of ISDN circuits looming. 

Lastly, PBX systems facilitate easy integrations with other company systems, such as CRMs. This can be particularly useful for small businesses as they’re often understaffed and thus could use some help managing the workload.

Plan a Cloud PBX Installation for your SME

Why should small businesses invest in cloud based phone systems?

Here are some key reasons why small business owners should invest in cloud phone systems:

  1. It can improve customer satisfaction
    Businesses thrive off providing high-quality customer service. A key component of ensuring customer satisfaction is facilitating seamless incoming and outgoing calls. 

    Business phone systems allow calls to be answered or routed regardless of where on earth the receiver is. Small businesses can benefit the most from this since high customer satisfaction can quickly lead to growth. 

  2. Cloud phone systems can grow as your customer calls do
    Scalability is the most common objective amongst SMEs. As you start to garner more momentum, you’ll likely be inundated with more calls, inquiries and emails.With a cloud telephone system, you can easily scale your operations as the demand for your products and services increases.

    In short, a virtual phone system can help you keep up with market and employee demands.

  3. It can alleviate pressure on workers
    As we briefly hinted in the section above, installing a business phone system can decrease the pressure on your employees. They simplify call routing and call answering.Cloud systems also come with remote support to ensure that your system keeps running as it should. This means that workers can focus more on other tasks while calls are being managed by an automated system.
  4. It streamlines workflow
    When it comes to inputting new contact information, adding new platform users and creating a new branch for communication, cloud phone systems make things much faster.

    In other words, they reduce the hassle of making changes and provide opportunities to streamline operations. Workflow being streamlined means that workers will be more productive and more efficient.
  5. Costs can be reduced
    A cloud business phone system can significantly reduce operating costs. A VoIP phone system doesn’t require on-site installation or maintenance. Additionally, they mitigate the need for new equipment to be purchased for new hires.Service providers often give the companies several options to tailor their packages and only pay for features that they’ll use.


When should SMEs get cloud PBX?

If you believe a cloud business phone system can work for your business, then it’s a simple matter of ensuring that you’re ready to make the switch. 

Being ‘ready’ however, doesn’t exactly require much; just an internet connection and the initial investment fee is sufficient in most cases. Although, it might be a good idea to check internet speeds, as you need to make sure the connection can support VoIP without issue. 

The great thing about a cloud PBX system is that signing up for the service and installing the necessary programs usually doesn’t take long. Your operations are also likely to go interrupted.

What to look for in a cloud phone system for an SME

Selecting the right business phone system requires you to be fully aware of the size of your business, its needs and your budget. Our guide to selecting Cloud PBX systems may also help.

Pay close attention to the following when looking for a cloud phone system:

  • Features or packages:
    This could be a good place to start, as your decision to purchase a package will depend on what the package offers. In this sense, look for packages with the features that you want or need.

    Examples of key features could be a companion mobile phone app or video conferencing.
  • Cost:
    The right cloud PBX package for you will have to meet all your business’s needs and have the ability to grow with you. Speaking to our team will allow you to compare packages and prices to see when the best time is to begin your integration.
  • Reliability:
    Leverage review sites to see what other people say about a service provider. If the reviews indicate a high trust index, then you’re better positioned to invest comfortably.
  • Compatibility:
    If you already have a cloud phone system in place, you’ll need to consider whether your equipment will be compatible with their packages and determine whether it will be compatible with certain equipment. PBX relocation and reinstallation are both options with United Telecoms.


What are the options for cloud PBX phone systems for small businesses?

At United Telecoms, we have a variety of packages available for small business phone systems. Our leading hosted PBX system is reliable and, more importantly, customisable. It’s also packed with the latest in unified communications technology, so your communications will be more flexible than ever.

Some of the most notable options and features for cloud PBX systems for small businesses include:

  • The option to buy or rent your handsets or smartphone apps. 
  • Seamless integration and easy installation.
  • The option to keep your old number.
  • Softphone extension capabilities.
  • Mobile application options.
  • Built-in telephone management systems.
  • Online self-care portal for ongoing maintenance.

Options for IP Desktop phone integration.

Discuss your Cloud PBX Options

How cloud PBX works for SMEs

With cloud PBX systems, the provider houses the PBX equipment in addition to providing the service. You’ll then have a desk phone plugged into an internal network that connects to the main router. 

All the features, calls and signalling are managed through an off-site server. The server is typically stored at the provider’s data centre, where they’ll also maintain it.

Once installed, the PBX will manage all phone calls and extensions. They’re often accompanied by mobile apps that allow users to receive calls and access features via a variety of mobile devices. This is a popular feature for small businesses that don’t have the money to invest in lots of new equipment.


Advantages of cloud PBX phone systems for SMEs

  • They require less wiring, meaning that they’re extremely portable.
  • Repairs usually don’t cost much, when required.
  • The monthly costs of running PBX systems tend to be low.
  • Can be easily scaled as your business grows.
  • They come with an extensive suite of features.
  • You can assign specific functions to certain lines, thus spreading the workload.


Disadvantages of cloud PBX phone systems for SMEs

  • Internal management of the system may require some technical expertise.
  • A power outage or interruption of your internet can lead to downtime.
  • You may incur costs associated with maintenance.
  • Some providers leave it up to businesses to manage the security of their phone systems.
  • Require a strong internet connection to function properly.


Switching to a cloud-based phone system can revolutionise the way you do business. They can reduce business phone system costs while improving customer satisfaction and efficiency.

The number of options available on the market may make settling on a system somewhat difficult. However, having the right knowledge can prepare you to make such a weighty decision.

Phone systems have unique benefits and features. When you’re ready, we can help you to look for one that compliments the needs, objectives and limitations of your business.

FAQs about Cloud PBX for SMEs

What is a PBX user?

A PBX user refers to the individual user accounts that belong to a single phone installation. Much like having multiple logins for one computer, one physical phone can be configured to have multiple PBX users.


How many cloud PBX users can I have?

Companies can have as many users as they like or need. A service provider’s package typically includes a certain number of users and additional users can be purchased.


Can I use my current internet service for a new phone system?

Yes, you can use your current internet service for a new phone system as phone service providers generally don’t require you to switch ISPs or purchase a dedicated internet service. 

There may be instances in which a phone service provider will recommend an ISP, with the reason typically being them having a partnership or the internet service being compatible with the phone service.


How much does cloud PBX cost?

The cost of a PBX investment largely depends on the size of your organisation and the number of phone lines you’ll require. Other factors that can influence the cost include additional features, international calling needs and fibre optic installation.

At United Telecoms, we can find the most cost effective package for you and ensure that you’re fully equipped for your size business and future scaling.

Got questions? Contact our experts today.


We service the following locations across London and the United Kingdom

Greater London: City of London, Hounslow, Barking and Dagenham, Islington, Barnet, Kensington and Chelsea, Bexley, Kingston upon Thames, Brent, Lambeth, Bromley, Lewisham, Camden, Merton Croydon, Newham, Ealing, Redbridge, Enfield, Richmond upon Thames, Greenwich, Southwark, Hackney, Sutton, Hammersmith and Fulham, Tower Hamlets, Haringey, Waltham Forest, Harrow, Wandsworth, Havering, Westminster and Hillingdon.

What Our Customers Say

“Once we approved the installations we were kept up to date daily with the levels of progress on our various sites and were very impressed with the final installation”

Spear Properties


Get In Touch

London Office

2 Osborne Way
KT19 8GR
United Kingdom (UK)

Tel: 033 1630 0516
Tel: 020 3399 8011

Email: info@united-telecoms.co.uk

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