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Multiple Party Conference Calling
This is different from a conference phone and just making calls. Here we are referring to the phone system capabilities. You see some phone systems will only allow you to have a 3 party conference call while others like Avaya allow up to 64 party conferencing!
The number of conferencing parties means how many independent people you can call/conference at once (it is not how many people you can fit in one office). If conferencing is important to your business then it pays to know a system’s limitations.
Some phone systems also offer sophisticated conference bridging etc while others only offer basic functionality. Conference bridging is where the phone system will call and connect to parties at a predetermined time, which is great for those larger conferences (imagine having to call 20 different people to add them in, that would be time consuming!). Just think-you want to initiate a conference call at 1pm tomorrow. You tell the phone system what time, who the conference parties are and their contact details. At 1pm the system automatically calls and tells the participants that they are being connected for a conference call. You didn’t have to do a thing. Conversely you can tell people to call a phone number at 1pm and the phone system takes care of the rest. Clever isn’t it!
If conferencing is important to you then make sure you also ask about full duplex conference phones. Full duplex makes a massive difference to call clarity and quality.