Try doing a Google search on ‘SIP trunking’, and you will get nearly 1.5 million results. A bewildering number of vendors all claim to be the best SIP provider, which can make it difficult for you to cut through all the fluff and find someone who can help you realize the benefits of SIP trunking.
All SIP services and providers are not created equal, so you must look for the following key attributes from a would-be provider:
- Quality – Running your voice traffic on a data network helps you save money, but when you do so, you must make sure that your voice traffic gets priority. This will ensure that your voice service is always clear and it does not sound like you have a bad connection. Good SIP trunking providers can tag voice packets with quality of service (QoS) markers to give them priority treatment over other forms of data on your network.
- Security – SIP is a new form of traffic that will need to run on your data network – one that your network may not recognize. Firewall updates or the deployment of a SIP-aware gateway or session border controller is required for most Internet-based deployments. For greater security, a private IP-VPN network service can completely protect your traffic from Internet-based threats. Your SIP trunking provider should guide you through your options and recommend the best solution.
- Experience – SIP trunking is an innovative service, but it is still not widely used in Canada. Ensure that your provider has experience in deploying SIP trunking and can help you use it to super-power your unified communications (UC) infrastructure. A provider that has knowledge of how UC and SIP trunking work together can be a great asset.
- Network – SIP trunking connects your private voice network to the public phone network via a SIP-enabled connection. A SIP trunking provider that owns and operates both voice and IP data networks can route calls with fewer handoffs or points of interconnection. This can ensure you get high-quality service that is easy to manage and support.
Your SIP trunking provider should make your implementation as low-risk and efficient as possible. Their project plan should allow you to focus on your core business while they focus on testing, project management and simplifying your complex networks.
What qualities do you want from a SIP trunking provider? Feel free to share your comments and questions below.