Today's cloud-hosted VoIP phone systems allow businesses of all sizes to take advantage of the features – like auto attendants, call recording, voicemail transcription and conference calling – that previously only large enterprise organizations could afford. The cloud-hosted systems give businesses access to these features, without having to install high-priced PBX equipment inside your business.
Other valuable tools that businesses looking for a feature-packed business phone system may want include call forwarding, extension dialing, call monitoring, call queuing and CRM integrations.
Jive is our choice as the best business phone system for features and tools: It is a cloud-hosted VoIP solution with an array of powerful features and a simple setup for a fair price. The system helps unify your employees to each other and to clients.
The service efficiently supports both voice and video calls, integrates well with existing CRM systems, and offers contact center services. In addition, the service is reliable and works well for both small and large businesses.
View all our recommendations for business phone systems on our best picks page.
Competitive Pricing and Terms
Unlike other phone systems that have different service plans based on the number of features included, Jive offers all users access to nearly all of it tools. The prices for Jive vary based on how many employees you have. The way it works is the more users you have, the less you pay per person.
Jive has five pricing tiers that range from $20 to $30 per month, per user. The pricing tiers are as follows:
- 1-4 users: $29.95 per user, per month
- 5-9 users: $25.95 per user, per month
- 10-24 users: $23.95 per user, per month
- 25-49 users: 21.95 per user, per month
- More than 50 users: $19.95 per user, per month
Regardless of how much you pay, you have access to all of the features and tools Jive offers, except its Go To Meeting, an online meeting service that Jive now offers as part of its phone system. You can get this included in your phone system for no additional cost if you agree to a 13-month contract. If you want to pay month to month but still want access to the Go To Meeting services, it's an additional $39.95 per user, per month.
Jive offers users a wide selection of desk and conference phone options. Desk phone prices range between $75 and $800 each.
It's important to note that Jive doesn't require businesses to sign contracts or pay annually. But, those companies that are willing to commit to both are eligible for better deals on service or phones.
Jive provides all users with unlimited calling in the U.S. and Canada. The company notes that there are some locations in Alaska and Hawaii that they might be charged extra for. Overall, the phone system provider has more than 80 features included in its service.
- Jive offers 45 basic VoIP features, such as auto attendants, barge, call monitoring, call recording, three-way conferencing, custom hold music, custom greetings, dial by name or extension, paging, ring groups, voicemail, voicemail-to-email and virtual fax. The system also includes custom schedules that allow administrators to set time-based call routing. This feature can be used to route calls during open and closed business hours, for example.
- One valuable feature for businesses where employees share workspace is the hot desking tool. This lets more than one employee use the same phone. Each time an employee gets to that desk or office, they dial *43 and enter their personal code. This automatically reprograms the phone with their caller ID and extension. When that employee leaves the workspace and another one settles in, they follow the same procedure to quickly reprogram the phone with their settings.
- Call-management features include call history, call park, auto reject, auto-divert, call queues, call routing, call waiting, call transfers, caller ID, do not disturb and find me/follow me. The find me/follow me tool lets employees have their calls forwarded to other phones. They can then choose when to have each phone ring when a call comes in. They can have the calls forwarded after a certain number of rings, or have all of their phones ring simultaneously. With this feature enabled, calls won't be missed if the internet is down, because they will automatically be forwarded to another phone, such as a mobile device.
- A nice aspect of Jive is that all users receive some contact center services at no extra cost. This includes advanced ring strategies; custom queue hold messages and music; pre-call announcement; report caller hold time; queue call barge, recording, spy and whisper; and wait time announcements.
- The system also offers video conferencing that features click to connect, group text chat, SIP security, full screen display and the ability to record meetings. Additionally, Jive is now offering users GoToMeeting services. GoToMeeting is an online web conferencing service that includes screen sharing, call me and cloud recording.
- With Jive's mobile app, available for iOS and Android devices, users can make and receive calls from their business line, conduct conference calls, send and receive text messages, view call histories, and choose ringtones. The mobile app features geofencing that allows users to set location-based rules that, among other things, automatically turns on and off do not disturb.
- Jive integrates with many third-party business applications like Salesforce, Zoho, Redtail CRM, Oracle, Zendesk and Outlook.
- The system provides detailed call analytics. You can review the number of calls and call minutes on a daily or weekly basis, as well as, among other things, get a geographical look at where those calls are coming from. In addition to seeing data from a company perspective, the analytics provide a closer look at data from each extension.
Jive has a complete conference calling service built into its's phone system. With the conference bridge feature, which comes included for no extra charge, each employee can hold their own conference call with up to 10 callers.
If your company is looking to host conference calls with more than 10 callers, you'll need to use a conference calling service. These services allow for hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of callers on each call. You can find more information on these services on our conference call services best pick page.
Ease of Use
Jive is a cloud-hosted VoIP phone system that doesn't require any special PBX hardware or equipment. The system runs on the exact same internet connection as you use to get online. With that in mind, Jive recommends having a business-class router, an Ethernet switch capable of Quality of Service (QOS), and a firewall that allows you to access http, https, and UDP traffic on your network.
It is also critical to have the necessary bandwidth to handle your company's call volume. Each Jive call requires 100kpbs of internet bandwidth. It is important to ensure you have enough bandwidth to handle not only your voice calls, but also your computer traffic.
With this system, you don't need a trained IT staff to keep it running smoothly. Since it is a cloud-hosted system, Jive handles the maintenance and upgrades. If you buy your phones from Jive, they come preconfigured and are ready to use as soon as you plug them. If you buy your phones from another provider, you will need to work with the Jive support team to get the phones properly configured.
Jive allows customers to choose local or toll-free numbers. For local numbers, you can select options from more than 200 area codes nationwide. With toll-free numbers, businesses are charged 1.9 cents per minute for incoming calls.
If you are an established business wanting to keep the number you currently have, Jive allows you to port your number over from your current phone system provider. Number transfers typically take between five and 18 days to complete.
The entire system is controlled via an online portal. From the portal, which can be accessed from an internet-connected device, administrators can make changes to a dial plan, configure new phones, add or delete users, manage extensions, change on-hold music, set auto-attendant greetings, and update call filter settings.
Each user can also access an online portal to make changes to their own settings. From the portal, employees can change their call forwarding, voicemail and online fax settings. In addition, employees can use a softphone to make and receive calls from their computer, instant message with co-workers and start video meetings.
Jive is extremely reliable. The system has a 99.99 percent uptime and 11 data centers worldwide, including seven in the U.S.
We were pleased with Jive's customer service Jive provided. To test the level of support, we contacted the company multiple times by phone and email posing as business owners interested in a business phone system.
Each time we contacted the company, we were greeted by helpful representatives who provided us detailed answers to our questions. They helped us better understand the system's platform, how it worked, the available features, the pricing structure and the mobile app. By the end of our calls, we always had a clear understanding of Jive and all it had to offer.
The representatives always followed up by email to ensure we didn't have any follow-up questions and provided us with a detailed price quote. Any time we responded to their emails asking a question, we received a prompt response.
Customer support is available by phone, email and live chat 24/7. In addition, the company's website is filled with helpful information, including data sheets, user guides, FAQs and videos.
Jive is not an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau and has a C- rating. The BBB reports that the low rating is due to the company's failure to respond to three complaints. There have been 10 complaints filed against the company in the past three years. Of those, just two were resolved to the satisfaction of the complainant.
If you need extensive contact center services with features like skills-based routing, automatic call back and agent scripting, you will need to work with one of Jive's partners, InContact. Many other phone system providers handle all of their contact center services in-house.
Editor's note: Looking for a business phone system? Click the Compare Quotes button below to have our sister site BuyerZone connect you with vendors that can help.
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