VoIP has irrevocably changed the infrastructure of the office. As a result, businesses are able to function across multiple offices and with remote workers utilizing a variety of different devices (i.e. smartphones, softphones, etc.). Despite the service’s growth in function, many service features have yet to upgrade from their traditional forms. With functionality that allots for expansive use of a phone system, users need features that can keep up. For example, the Busy Lamp Field feature has allowed receptionists and call managers to view which coworkers are on a call (via flashing light). While this has been effective in the past, phone systems now cover multiple locations and devices; therefore, the system needs to grow to account for these new devices and locations. That being said, OnSIP looks to tackle this directly with their new Busy Lamp Field (BLF) feature.

Simply put, BLF is just a collection of lights (or other indicators) on a phone that serves to notify a user of whom is currently on their phone and connected to the system. Traditionally, the office environment has not accounted for phone systems operating over various locations. As such, traditional BLFs are unable to supply users with an accurate depiction of who is using their phone. This is where OnSIP’s BLF feature differs.  OnSIP defines there solution as being “a feature for many SIP desk phones that shows the line condition for other users on the same PBX (domain).” As such, the hosted VoIP PBX provider is able to deliver this indicator over their entire distributed BLF platform—meaning users will receive a snapshot that captures accurate usage of the system regardless of location or the device being used.

As stated above, VoIP technology, more specifically mobile devices and BYOD adoption, has radically changed the workplace. As such, many features are now in need of a similar overhaul. OnSIP’s BLF looks to do just that; however, in implementing expanded feature the provider doesn’t sacrifice accessibility. As a presence feature, BLF is included on users’ unified communications dashboard. To enable the service, users need to log in to their admin portal and access the account tab. That’s it. In addition to enabling the feature, users will need to configure BLF individually for each phone.

While BLF may not be the end all of features, it can be a great tool to help users better manage their business phone system and their employees. As VoIP has allowed the office to expand outside of traditional one location/standard device setting, it’s harder for call managers/receptionists/other admin personnel to manage users’ calls as they do not have access to their status. Typically, traditional BLF works on standard devices in one location. OnSIP’s BLF allows various devices over different locations to interact with one another; therefore, office personal can better monitor and manage both remote employees and their calls. In turn, this could lead to significant increases in efficiency and productivity. As the office continues to expand in new ways, interconnectivity will become more vital. While many features allot users to stay connected, OnSIP’s BLF feature helps keep all employees on the same page.