The NBN rollout means your existing telephone network’s days are numbered. Specifically, that number is 547 days, or 18 months, after your local infrastructure is updated.
That may sound like a lot, but time flies. Taking charge of the situation sooner rather than later is the only way to avoid potential loss of business.
Start preparing now
The NBN is coming and will impact every business in the country, and since rollout and cut-off dates vary depending on your address, it’s easy enough to miss the boat, particularly if your business has more than one location. (To find out what’s happening in your area, check your address here.)
Because it’s a government-mandated disconnection, there’s no delaying or stopping it but you will receive a notification for when it will occur. If you haven’t taken action and your lines are down, don’t panic.
“If you speak to your provider, we can divert calls through to your mobile number or a phone number of your choice and expedite an NBN solution, so you have active traffic at the site,” says Henry Liddell, General Manager of Customer Activations at Commander.
But the easiest way to stop any disruption to service, he adds, is to get on an NBN-ready solution now, so that when the new technology arrives it’s an easy switch.
A more strategic approach
The upside of preparing to update your services is that it gives you a chance to review your technology needs for the future and how tech can improve the way you do business.
“If you have numbers coming up for disconnection, for a small monthly fee you can get a 1300 number which will never change and offers the appearance of a bigger business. You can point to that number whenever you need such as your mobile, a new location and so on,” Liddell says.
“Or you can pay for a port and keep your phone number, but then it’s important to decide which numbers you need. For example, if you have five lines and you only have one number advertised, it might make sense to keep that one number but get new ones for the other four. So, start to think about the post-NBN world.”
The benefits don’t stop there. The NBN’s faster internet speeds also present advantages in terms of greater flexibility and convenience in the new world of work.
Services that work for you
It’s the middle of the day in the middle of the week and Cameron Howlett, principal and founder of Independent Wealth Partners, has just returned from a bracing one-and-a-half hour ride in the fresh country air of Mount Macedon, a small splash of green about 40 minutes north-west of Melbourne.
That is, 40 minutes in good traffic. But it doesn’t matter what’s happening on the roads today – Wednesdays are work-from-home days for the financial adviser’s whole team, shaving hours off their commute every week and boosting job satisfaction across the board.
“Probably five to 10 years ago the expectation was that you’d be in the office at 9am and you’d leave at 5pm, but I think the working experience now, for those employers that are flexible enough to allow it, is completely different to that,” Howlett says.
“If you can give people back an extra eight to 10 hours a week because they work from home, I think that’s invaluable, because it allows people to do the things that are important to them and that make them happy.”
For the father-of-three, that means participating in school drop-offs and pick-ups, and as a coach at his kids’ sports games, as well as a solid workout session. All of which he can work around in the post-NBN world.
“We can still answer phone calls via VOIP IP, so if the landline rings in the office, it also rings in my house and at my employees’ houses,” he says, “and we communicate with each other using video conferencing software, which means if there’s a question, people can check in with me immediately in the same way they would if we were sitting in corresponding offices.
“It’s like a virtual office network – and we can do all this stuff from home, which we were never able to do prior to using the NBN because the upload speed wasn’t quick enough.”
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