Paul Boyer can’t tell you how many executives care about the technical workings of a virtual PBX, but he can tell you this much: They all want to grow their business, save money, and make technology work for them.
In an upcoming presentation on the benefits of modernizing your business phone system, Boyer will talk about improving productivity with the technologies of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and hosted private board exchange. As a managing partner at the Mount Laurel-based company Ancero, Boyer and Dana Keane, utility VoIP product manager, will share case studies from companies representing different business types and sizes.
Sponsored by MIDJersey Chamber of Commerce and MIDJersey Center for Economic Development (MIDCED), the talk will highlight a breakfast forum on Thursday, May 28, from 8 to 10 a.m. at the Trenton Country Club, 201 Sullivan Way, West Trenton. $25; $40, future members. Register online at midjerseychamber.org/event/the-benefits or call 609- 689-9960.
“The simplest way to describe what Ancero offers is a business class phone service in the cloud,” Boyer says. For the customer, it requires only an Internet connection and a VoIP phone. “Customers connect to our service rather than rely on equipment at their office,” he says.
Users get the benefits of traditional phone service — like voicemail, caller ID, remote office mobility, hold music or messages — with advantages of the cloud: Lower costs, saving up to 20 to 30 percent on hardware, software, and energy consumption; stronger fault tolerance, meaning less or no down time caused by weather or emergencies; more flexibility in adding features and making changes to your system; and scalability, serving small, mid-sized, and large enterprises.
While individual cell phones offer mobility to users, using these phones alone doesn’t provide the advantages of a corporate PBX. “When my phone on my desk rings, my cell phone rings too so I can use either,” says Boyer. “The power goes to the end user. Flexibility is the thing. What surprises people the most is the low cost of using VoIP and cloud-hosted PBX service,” says Boyer.
VoIP can easily handle some things traditional phone networks cannot. Incoming calls are automatically routed to your VoIP phone wherever you plug it into the network. This is especially useful when traveling or working away from the office. Call center agents can work from anywhere with a good Internet connection.
Using a hosted private corporate cloud eliminates the security risks associated with hosting in a public environment. It is flexible and scalable for businesses with one or several locations or mobile workers.
What makes Ancero different than other service providers, says Boyer is that is it handles all facets of VoIP and hosted PBX so customers don’t need to deal with multiple vendors. The offerings include design, installation, VoIP, managed IT, support, the private cloud, and the network. “We own all the technology and meet with customers on a quarterly basis,” Boyer says.
Ancero was founded in 2008 when the owners of two technology companies, Eastern IT Group and Media Systems, joined forces. Today Ancero is headed by managing partners Robert Hogg from Eastern IT, Fred Barilotti from Media Systems, and Boyer, who had worked with Hogg at Eastern.
“Today we manage between 6 and 7,000 devices. In the Delaware Valley, we have served 1,100 clients and have 400 to 500 companies we service regularly,” says Boyer. Ancero’s customers come from a wide range of industries including healthcare, nonprofits, insurance, tree care, and leasing, to name a few.
As a managing partner at Ancero, Boyer oversees all sales and marketing activities, providing strategic direction and spearheading new product and market development for the company. Boyer is a board member of the MIDJersey Chamber and has been involved with the New Jersey Technology Council for several years where he chaired the communication track. “NJTC is one of the largest tech councils in the country,” Boyer says.
Boyer attributes his work ethic to his father who was a pipefitter and his mother, an accountant and graduate of Rider College. As a boy, Boyer carried groceries for tips at a supermarket where he lived in Haddon Heights and also worked with his brothers and sisters fishing for crabs at the shore and selling them door-to-door. After high school, he studied at Saint Francis College, Pennsylvania, earning a bachelor’s degree in marketing and management.
Boyer remembers his first job after college at Bell Atlantic where he was “bitten by the technology bug. I just fell in love with the space,” he says. During his 30 year career, Boyer worked at United Telephone/Sprint, as the director of sales, and founded International Distribution & Consulting Inc. (IDCI), the first Internet company in the Delaware Valley. Later, he helped build ATX Communications, a Philadelphia carrier.
“Today 14 to 17 percent of the small to mid size business use VoIP and hosted PBX. Analysts predict very rapid growth during the next five to seven years. Apps and solutions are being designed so you can work from anywhere with any device and with any browser,” says Boyer.
“It’s only a matter of time before everyone will have mobile devices on their desks. Business owners want to harness technology to the benefit of their company,” he says. “I think our best days are ahead of us.”