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CISCO Phone System Review

June 20, 2018

11:15 am

  • Established: 1984
  • HQ: San Francisco
  • Highly scalable
  • Caters for small to enterprise businesses
  • Hosting on or off site

Well established and with comprehensive range of services

Whether you’re a small business looking for a dynamic VoIP plan, a midmarket company that wants to upgrade, or an enterprise that needs a diverse unified communications plan, Cisco has something for everyone.

In addition to full IT services, many of Cisco’s phone systems can be hosted by your business on premise, hosted by the company, or held in a public or private cloud.

  • Wide range of services
  • Voice, video and messaging systems
  • Specializes in large companies

Cisco is a well-established business communications company offering a wide suite of packages appropriate for companies of all sizes.

The company specialises in Unified Communications, managing the ways in which your customers can contact you, as well as how your company communicates internally, into an easy to manage package that is highly scalable.

Cisco Telephone Services: Core Features

Business Edition

Cisco’s Business Edition range of products are aimed at medium to enterprise sized businesses, and offer a full office phone system solution.

Business Edition 4000

The entry point in the Business Edition line up, this is aimed at companies with up to 200 members of staff. It is a simple, cloud-managed office phone system that incorporates telephony and voicemail. It is not scalable past 200 users.

Business Edition 5000

This is aimed at businesses with up to 1000 members of staff, and is an IP phone system which incorporates telephony, video, voice mail, conferencing and third party apps. The hardware is sold to be hosted on your business premises, in the shape of the BE6000M or BE6000H. The BE6000M can support 2500 connected devices, while the BE6000H can support 1200.

Business Edition 6000

At the top end is the Business Edition 6000. The 6000 is aimed at large scale enterprise businesses and, like the 5000, also offers telephony, video, voice mail, conferencing and third party apps. The hardware located on your business premises, the BE7000M can support up to 3000 devices, and unlike other Business Edition suites, is stackable, meaning that you can expand your capacity by simply adding more hardware.

Unified Communications Manager

Cisco phone range

Cisco offers a range of VoIP phones

At the center of Cisco’s collaboration portfolio infrastructure is the Unified Communications manager “CallManager”. The system covers just about every modern mode of business communication, and includes phones, video and more. It also lets designated users control session management.

Offering reliability, low cost of ownership, and easy scalability of up to 40,000 users, CallManager has an appealing suite of benefits to businesses looking to broaden their collaborative communications.

It also provides simplified, IP-based voice solutions, enhanced video capabilities that can be operated from your desktop or meeting room, and click-to-begin features for IM, phone, and video.

CallManager’s advanced VoIP technology lets you direct incoming IP calls to preferred lines, whether you’re in the office, or answering calls on your mobile (or transitioning between both). You can also create a personalized access list to determine which calls get routed to which numbers.

Additionally, this Unified Communication manager’s Unity Connection feature lets users manage messages from email, browsers, IP phones, tablets and more. It allows for voice commands, speech-to-text transcription and if desired, video greetings.

Contact Center Enterprise

Cisco’s Contact Center offers sophisticated and versatile features. Using an IP infrastructure, the system is founded on intelligent call routing.

You can configure it to analyze each individual call based on customer profiles and contact-specific data, and then deliver the call to the most appropriate department or agent anywhere within the enterprise.

The system also lets you seamlessly integrate inbound and outbound voice and internet applications. From chat to email and social media, an agent can manage different conversations at the same time over different channels.


Cisco Case Study

Genuine Health is a natural health company offering innovative, nutritious supplements, vitamins and weight-loss products.

With 60 employees dispersed between the US and Canada (many of them working remotely), and an outdated phone system on its last legs, Genuine Health needed a system that could improve communications both within the company, and with customers.

After a market evaluation, Genuine Health opted to deploy Cisco’s Business Edition 6000.

The on-premise, easy-to-manage solution allowed the company to take advantage of IP phones and enterprise-grade voice and video solutions. It integrated the system with Microsoft Office, which allowed users to instantly check their colleagues’ availability, and gave them access to chat, video calls and conferencing.

As a result, the unified solution improved employee efficiency and enabled enhanced interaction with Genuine Health’s customers.

Set Up and Customer Support

As you might expect, Cisco has a comprehensive support system for new and legacy customers.

There are a wide range of tools to help users understand their software and services, and the company also offers training and modules in its packages.

Cisco also offers 24/7 support and can be contacted via phone or chat, as well as its ticket reporting system. It also has a forum where users can trade ideas with each other as well as speak to Cisco representatives.

Support & Training

Support options

  • Phone: 1 800 553 2447
  • Online chat
  • Support ticket system
  • 24/7 support 

Training options

  • Online training videos
  • Support forums
  • Inhouse training courses
  • FAQs

Cisco Plans and Pricing

Cisco offers a wide range of packages, from unified communications to virtual call centres for a range of business sizes. Costing depends on the service you are interested in and the scale of your business.

The quickest way to get a bespoke business phone systems quote for your company is to use our price comparison form today.

Final Verdict

Cisco’s scope is huge, and with such a wide range of packages and services available, it should be able to cater to your business needs, whether you’re interested in Unified Communications, virtual call centers, or any facet of business comms.

It’s not the best fit for small companies with few staff or start-ups – Cisco can cater to smaller companies, but its strength is definitely in scale, and young businesses are likely to find a better fit with another provider who can offer them a bespoke service.

For everyone else though, medium to enterprise-sized businesses, Cisco has everything in place for successfully building your company.

Compare leading phone suppliers to find the best deal for your business.

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Jack is a senior writer at Tech.co with over a decade's experience researching and writing about consumer technology, from security and privacy to product reviews and tech news.

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