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The BYOD missed opportunity

VoIP hardware sucks.

Well at least for many VoIP providers.

It’s often troublesome to standardize on. It’s costly to purchase in volume and warehouse. Plus there is that whole “logistics” thing (including returns).

As a result many VoIP providers have decided to simply stick with what they do best – sell service – and allow customers to bring their own device (Bring Your Own Device).

For these providers and many an onlooker it seems like a smart move. Focus on what you do best (sell service) while giving customers the “choice” of whatever device they want.

A win-win right?

Well not quite.

In theory BYOD is a great thing. But in practice it’s very often a recipe for disaster – thanks to the fact that most customers aren’t well versed enough to truly select the right device (or set it up).

A quick example:

Acme Media is a five person digital marketing agency. Due to their size and limited budget, they’ve decided to go with NoName VoIP’s BYOD VoIP service. It’s cheap, looks like it will do the trick AND you can use an SIP device. Woot!

That’s where the problems start. First off, NoName VoIP doesn’t list what devices are compatible with their service nor where one can buy these devices on their site.

So Acme Media heads where most customers do – Google. They do a search and they find a friendly reseller or retailer more than willing to sell them a device. Delighted, Acme Media places an order for five phones that suites their fancy.

The product arrives and yet another problem arises. Configuration.

Acme is a digital marketing agency, not an IT shop. With vague instructions that don’t seem to be working they give a call in to NoName VoIP. After days of back and forth, NoName VoIP determines that it’s the hardware that’s at fault.

Here’s where the experience gets ruined at the expense of Acme.

They’ve now got to return the phones. Except they’re not defective. So now they’ve got to pay a re-stock fee or their supplier won’t take them back. Plus they still don’t know what VoIP phones they are supposed to get!

With good intentions and smart business in mind NoName VoIP has completely ruined the customer experience for themselves, but also the retailer who supplied the hardware. Plus Acme Media is out time, money and are really at their wits end with this whole VoIP thing.

Such a disappointing event that could of easily been prevented with a bit of cooperation. All that really needed to have happened was a formal (or even informal) customer hand-off between the BYOD provider and a supplier.

The BYOD provider wins by ensuring the customer gets the right device from a reliable provider (and not having to deal with the hardware). The customer wins by not having to deal with incompatibility issues that cause time and money loss. Of course the supplier gets another hardware sale and possibly a subsequent add-on sale.

It’s a win-win-win.

So BYOD providers don’t miss the opportunity to create a win-win-win situation as a result of a solid customer experience. When it comes to VoIP hardware make sure you make a formal or even informal hand-off to a quality supplier.

We’re out here and willing to help.

BYOD service providers don’t get mad. Get a quality supplier that will provide the same level of service to your customers that you do? Give me (Garrett) a call at 716-250-3408 and I’ll happily walk you through VoIP Supply’s BYOD service provider program.

Garrett Smith

Garrett Smith is a Technology Marketing and Sales Professional

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