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    November 22, 2023

    The Ultimate Guide for Migrating from Legacy PBX to UCaaS

    It won’t be long now before the Legacy PBX is completely gone. Organizations all over the world are moving to the cloud, hoping to access the benefits of modern collaboration software. Still, this migration can be a daunting task for many organizations, especially large enterprises.  

    With this guide, we’ll lay out the steps you’ll need to take to migrate from a PBX to a UCaaS solution.   

    Risks of a PBX and Benefits of UCaaS 

    Legacy PBX systems have three major shortcomings: 

    • Scalability: Adding new lines, numbers, and users is extremely difficult with a legacy PBX. 
    • Cost-effectiveness: PBX maintenance is expensive and often requires dedicated personnel, making it a huge burden for your IT team. 
    • Flexibility: Because a legacy PBX is often voice-only and on-premises, it can’t connect with digital channels like email and social media and struggles to support remote users. 

    Conversely, UCaaS solves each of these problems: 

    • Scalability: Adding and removing lines, numbers, and users in UC software is much easier. 
    • Cost-effectiveness: The “as a Service” model means no upfront hardware expense and much lower maintenance costs (where maintenance is covered by the provider). 
    • Flexibility: Cloud-based software allows for seamless connection to digital channels and makes it easier than ever for users to collaborate remotely. 

    For modern organizations, the choice is clear. Migrating to a UCaaS solution should happen sooner rather than later. To manage that migration, we have a four-step roadmap to follow to make your migration as easy as possible. 

    The 4 Step Roadmap for a Seamless PBX to UCaaS Migration 

    These are the four steps to ensure a seamless migration. 

    Step 1. Take Inventory 

    The first step is taking inventory of your communications infrastructure. As you assess the performance and reliability of your legacy systems, look for ways that a UCaaS solution can improve your environment. 

    For example, you may have an out-of-date PBX managed by your IT team, or you may run a call center through your PBX. A UCaaS solution could remove the hassle of managing this older device from your IT team. It can also be integrated with an omnichannel contact center to elevate your customer interactions. 

    Step 2. Begin the Porting Process

    Once you’ve fully assessed your environment, it’s time to begin the porting process. This is where you’ll prepare to transition your existing lines and numbers to your new UCaaS solution.  

    Most UCaaS solutions offer two options to new users: port old numbers or get new ones. Whatever choice your organization makes, your UCaaS provider will be able to help ensure the porting process goes as smoothly as possible. 

    Step 3. Configure Hosted PBX 

    Once your numbers are ported and your devices are set up, it’s time to configure the cloud-based hosted PBX that will replace your legacy system. This may be the biggest step in the transition, especially for organizations that rely heavily on PBX processes. 

    Configuring DID, voicemail, and call routing can be challenging, but with a UCaaS solution it’s all handled in the cloud and by your provider. Of course, it’s important for you to work closely with your provider to make sure these new configurations match your unique environment and align with your business goals. 

    Providers with expertise in legacy systems can also help with other essential configurations, such as E911 requirements and analog device integration. Continuant, for example, boasts more than 25 years of experience with business voice systems. With a partner like that at your side, your solution will be able to meet every requirement while minimizing downtime. 

    Step 4. Schedule a Cutover Plan

    The final step is scheduling the cutover plan. This outlines the timeline and procedures for switching from your legacy PBX to your new UCaaS solution. A cutover plan may take time, but by working closely with your UCaaS provider, you can create a plan with as few disruptions to your business goals as possible. 

    From here on out, your provider will be doing most of the work. Before you know it, your entire communications environment will be in the cloud, and your business will be in the modern era. 

    Tips for Reducing Downtime and Ensuring a Smooth Transition 

    Wherever you are in the migration process from legacy PBX to UCaaS, you’ll want to make sure the transition is as smooth as possible, and that downtime and disruptions are kept to a minimum. Here are a few tips to help you accomplish this: 

    Keep a Backup Solution 

    A backup solution can save you if communications go down during the transition. This could be your personal devices or even the old phone system the UCaaS solution is replacing. A provider like Continuant with expertise in legacy systems can help you keep an old system running as a potential backup. 

    Develop a User Adoption and Change Management Strategy 

    Your migration can go off without a hitch on the technical side and still fall apart with poor user adoption. To mitigate this risk, it’s important to invest in an Adoption and Change Management (ACM) strategy that will encourage organization-wide adoption of the new solution. 

    Maintaining constant communication with your users, especially in a large organization, is critical to a successful ACM project. It’s also important to engage key stakeholders in the organization and to provide comprehensive training to all users. 

    Certain UCaaS providers, such as Continuant, offer their own ACM services that are tailor-made to help organizations like yours maximize user adoption. 

    Conduct Thorough Testing 

    To make sure no issues go unresolved, it’s important to conduct extensive, thorough testing of your new solution. Your UCaaS provider can help you determine which tests are most important and help you run them before, during, and after your migration. 

    Seek Advice from your Provider 

    While conducting your migration, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance from your provider whenever you need it. UCaaS providers are there to help resolve any issues and can give you valuable advice to ensure your migration goes smoothly. 

    Questions to ask your UCaaS Provider 

    When choosing your UCaaS provider, there are many things you’ll need to determine before the migration begins. Will this provider meet all your requirements? How aware is this provider of your unique needs? How extensive are this provider’s services?  

    When evaluating potential UCaaS providers, there are three important questions to ask them: 

    1. What level of support will you provide during and after the migration? 
    2. What security measures will you put in place to protect our data during the transition? 
    3. How much time and resources can we expect to save if we choose your solution and services? 

    These questions will help you find the right partner to meet your unique needs. 

    A New Solution for Your Communication Goals 

    The migration from legacy PBX to UCaaS is more than just a technical upgrade. It’s a massive change to your organization and an opportunity to reach your communication goals. By working with your UCaaS provider, you’ll enhance your communications environment with future-proof technology that meets your needs. 

    Ready to begin your migration? At Continuant, we’re ready to work with you to develop the UCaaS solution your organization deserves. We have 28 years of experience supporting enterprise phone systems, ensuring thousands of end-users stay connected. Recently we’ve had tremendous success helping large enterprises like Paraxel migrate to new UC solutions, and we’ve received the Microsoft Partner of the Year Award on two separate occasions. 

    Ready to Begin Your Migration?

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    Continuant, a Managed Services Provider and Systems Integrator, offering world-class solutions for Cloud, Voice Systems, Networking, UC, and AV. From UC and AV solution design and installation to post-installation support, Continuant focuses on delivering exceptional service to the enterprise. We manage complex...

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