In today’s rapidly evolving communication landscape, businesses are constantly searching for ways to make internal and external interactions more seamless.
The private branch exchange is a technology that assists businesses in managing inbound and outgoing calls. It is becoming a critical component in many corporate IT stacks since it enables more flexible and mobile communications.
If you’re looking to level up your business telecommunications, here’s a look at what private branch exchange is and how it can help you.
What Does PBX Mean?
Private branch exchange (PBX) is a private interphone network that allows users to communicate over local lines. The users within the PBX share a single external phone line, which also serves as the company contact number.
PBX manages the routing and calling features for internal (within the organization) and external (with clients and partners) calls. It can also connect different types of communication devices, such as phones and fax machines.
What Is the Purpose of a PBX?
A PBX phone system is mainly intended to reduce the costs of making internal calls. It does away with the need to give each user a separate connection to the public switched telephone network (PSTN). Instead, employees can communicate internally within their network, free of charge.
How Does a PBX Phone System Work?
Aside from knowing what a private branch exchange is, it’s also worth learning how it works.
There are generally three variations of PBX phone systems, namely analog, digital, and cloud-hosted. An analog PBX utilizes the PSTN, while a digital PBX uses an internet connection. A cloud PBX is a hosted digital system that operates entirely over the internet.
Some common examples of components that make up a standard PBX system include:
- A CPU that manages calling capabilities
- A power supply for the phone system
- Trunk lines
- Phone handsets
- Internet router
- Telephony application server
- An operator console for routing calls
A PBX call center manages inbound and outbound calls and utilizes features that allow the automatic handling of inbound calls. A few examples of these features are:
- Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
- Integration to customer relationship management systems
- Call monitoring
- Conferencing capabilities
Through a PBX, companies can collect all incoming calls with one number. However, external callers would need to use an extension suffix or go through a central switchboard to reach the person they’re calling.
What Are the Differences among PBX, PABX, and VoIP?
When researching what a private branch exchange is, you’re also likely to come across the phrases PABX and VoIP.
PABX, or private automatic branch exchange, is an automated PBX. However, this term is now rarely used since essentially all PBX systems today are automated.
Meanwhile, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology uses the internet instead of phone lines to send and receive phone calls.
How Do PBX Systems Benefit Businesses?
Now that you know what private branch exchange is and how it works, you should know what this modern communication solution can do for your business.
PBX can meet your communication needs by offering vital features and functions such as:
- Customized greetings or recorded messages
- Management and restriction of calls
- Reliable call transferring
- Use of the queue function in a call center to handle a high volume of calls
- Call routing within multiple office locations
Depending on the PBX service you get, you can unlock many more features that ensure seamless communication.