For years, us salespeople have been tied to a little piece of plastic at our desks. Using physical phones have forced them to stay in noisy offices struggling to hear or have made it harder for them to work from home or on a business trip. The increased use of headsets and the prevalence of smartphones has made this somewhat better. However, many times you may not want to use your personal mobile phone for work or poor service prevents this from truly providing the mobility benefits. What about using softphones?
A softphone, or a software telephone, is a application that allows you to make calls from your computer. While the choice between a softphone and a hardphone is truly one of personal preference (I know some of my colleagues still love their plastic desk phones), for me, the softphone wins out every time.
Why do I prefer using softphones?
First of all, using a softphone allows me to sit back and drive my PC better than reaching forward to use the desk phone. It also means that I am likely using a headset instead of a receiver, which also provides mobility. Like my cell phone riding around in my pocket, the soft phone is attached to my PC, so it’s always with me. This makes it very convenient to work from home or on the road – I always have my work phone with me.
Also, if it gets too noisy in my office, I can simply bring my laptop into a conference room and use my softphone from there. People can always reach me on my direct work number – instead of my mobile phone.
Clicking through my PC screen is much more efficient than using a dial pad on the phone. Same goes for the conference/ transfer and other features.
Softphones are also much cheaper than desk phones. When I sell CloudCall, we include a softphone with the license. It’s a quick and easy way to get customers up and using the product. Upgrading the softphone is a simple software change whereas getting a new desk phone is a big investment.
Another added benefit is that the softphone is environmentally friendly.
In sales you are on the phone constantly, so it’s important to find the system that works best for you. I think softphones are often overlooked, and many salespeople might find them very convenient and useful.