Your browser does not support JavaScript!

Opening a Business in the UAE [2021]

Source: Stockphoto.com O#23559 – ID#100195243380

Are you planning to open a business in the UAE or expand your current business there? To enter this Middle Eastern market smoothly, one must consider and be mindful of a few important factors. For example, what is the best way to enter the market? What regulations does your business need to follow? What resources do you have available? Here, we highlight important contacts, business etiquette, and resources to do business in the UAE successfully—from getting UAE virtual phone numbers to business etiquette, and more.

How to Do Business in the UAE?

The UAE is a constantly developing economy bringing new opportunities for investments regularly. There are a few different reasons, according to a PWC report, to want to do business in the UAE. Among these are:

  • One of the most liberal trade regimes
  • Opportunities in trade, banking, tourism, real estate, etc.
  • Strong infrastructure
  • Reliable banking system
  • A tax-favorable environment, and more

Starting a business in this Middle Eastern country is quick and easy! So, what do you need to keep in mind to successfully do business in the UAE?

Related: Middle East Virtual Phone Numbers

1. Important Contacts

From free trade zones to government organizations, here is a list of important contacts to be aware of when doing business here:

2. Where to Get Business Numbers?

To build business relationships in the UAE, you will need UAE virtual numbers. Virtual phone numbers help you establish contact with local residents and businesses even if you are located in a different country. Calls made to your UAE virtual business number will be forwarded to a location or number of your choice. This could be your main office, smartphone, etc.

United World Telecom offers a variety of UAE business phone numbers:

  • UAE toll free numbers — Local residents and business contacts can call these numbers for free
  • UAE geographic or local numbers for Dubai and Abu Dhabi — These are business numbers with local area codes. Locals pay regular calling rates and your business will be perceived as a local one.

Whether you are traveling or simply want to test the UAE market before making an investment, UAE phone numbers create communication channels without the need to be physically present in the country. You can then start to offer sales and customer support services.

3. Business Etiquette in the UAE

When working in a new country, respecting the country’s culture and norms is essential. Here are key notes on UAE business etiquette:

  • Be aware of UAE public holidays; avoid holding meetings during prayer times and holidays.
  • Exchange business cards with both hands after introductions, during meetings; don’t offer anything with the left hand.
  • Personal relationships are important; invest in face-to-face meetings.
  • Plan and schedule meetings in advance with extra time.
  • The workweek in the UAE runs from Sunday to Thursday; Friday and Saturday are rest days.
  • Don’t forget your manners and be courteous.
  • When interacting with a group, greet the senior-most person first.
  • Be patient, especially during meetings.
  • Hospitality is important; meetings occur over lunches or dinners and sometimes tea and coffee.
  • Dress conservatively.

4. Helpful Resources

Additional resources to assist you in starting your new company:

Doing Business in the UAE

The UAE is based adjacent to the Arabian Peninsula on the eastern coast. It is a federation of seven emirates, the largest of which is Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi also accounts for a majority of the oil industry and the wealth of the nation. The next largest emirate is Dubai, which is a famous port city that has grown into a booming commercial center for multinational corporations. The smaller emirates include Sharjah, Ajmān, Umm al-Qaywayn, Raʾs al-Khaymah, and Al-Fujayrah. Although the official language for the UAE is Arabic, many people speak English as well, especially in the business world.

The UAE has become extremely attractive to business owners for a plethora of reasons. If you are interested in starting your own business in the UAE, now is the time to do it. We usually recommend local phone numbers or toll free numbers for UAE businesses. Read on to find out how easy it is to open up your own business and make considerable profits in the UAE.

An Open Economy

Yes, the UAE has an open economy. It is one of the most accessible countries to trade within the Gulf and it has a very high per capita income. Many countries have already made their way to the UAE, and in so doing have helped to increase the economy even more with their foreign capital. The previously established nation has become even more wealthy with the influx of offshore companies and money. The UAE is already a cozy home to several multi-million dollar corporations and small start-up companies.

Foreign Investment-Friendly

The government of the United Arab Emirates caught on quickly that foreign investment would lead to a skyrocketing economy and therefore made it easier than ever for foreign companies to bring their businesses overseas. Foreign nationals get their own set of rules and regulations to follow, which includes fast-tracked legal procedures.

They want you in the UAE and the government won’t make you wait as they only require a minimal amount of paperwork. They have also set up registration and licensing to be fast and easy to understand.

UAE Free Zones

Foreign companies can apply to be tax-exempt under the free zone economy. This means that international businesses do not need to pay a corporate tax nor an income tax. All of your profits are just that, profits. There are free zones in Ajman, Dubai, and Abu Dhabi. When researching where you should take your company, those three areas should top your list. Keep in mind, however, that voice over IP is prohibited in the UAE. Direct inward dialing is still allowed and many businesses in the free zone utilize sophisticated PBX phone systems.

Access To An Elite Labor Pool

The UAE attracts a strong workforce to its largest cities. There is an abundance of skilled and unskilled workers that flock to the UAE from places such as India. It is such an attractive place for employees and employers alike because of its low tax structure and very high wages. UAE residents are also very well-taken care of. 92% of people are literate, and health insurance is mandatory. They have an established education structure, and international universities have been set up in the UAE including NYU and MIT.

Solid Foundations to Build Upon

Whatever your business needs, the UAE has made sure that they already have it set up for you. When you bring your business to the UAE, you will have easy access to transportation, business parks, warehousing, and office spaces. There is no need to start from scratch.

Great Location

The UAE offers easy access to its fast-growing and well-established neighbors, including its major trade partner, the European Union. It is also close to China and India and has excellent trade relations with both countries. Plus, it is a safe place to work with a relatively low crime rate.

One of the Best Locations for International Expansion

The UAE caters to its foreign investors, and because of its location, safety, workforce, and infrastructure, it easily attracts many foreign companies looking for an excellent location for expansion. If you’re looking to start your own business, then the UAE is a great country to start in because it has all the tools necessary to set you up for success.

Ready to Do Business in the UAE?

Use these resources and the accompanying contact information to start doing business in the UAE. Our global specialists can get you set up with virtual communication tools and business phone numbers, if you are curious about the specific options available to you. Contact us and find out how today!

How to Add a Click-to-Call Button in Your Email Signature

One aspect that every business needs to offer is being reachable to its clientele. This means giving your customers many simple ways to get in touch with you. And one such way is by adding a click-to-call button into your email signature.

Why Include a Click-to-Call Button in the Email Signature?

What is a click-to-call button and how can it be useful? A click-to-call or call now button is a widget or button that is linked to an individual or business’ phone number. As such, when a person clicks on this button, they initiate a phone call. By clicking or tapping the button, they place a call to that individual or business.

At this point, most businesses will have a click-to-call button on their website which can be accessed by web and mobile visitors. There are different types of call buttons. You can include a call page on your website that lets users type in their contact information to receive a callback. Or, you can include call buttons that, when clicked, place a call to your business immediately. For instance, when interested prospects search for your company’s website through their phone, they will notice a phone number along with a “call” icon near it. Upon tapping or clicking this, they will be directed to their phone’s keypad to make the call.

While your business phone number is available on your website and social media links, it is crucial to give interested and returning customers more quick channels to communicate with your business. And including a click-to-call button within your email signature is one way to accomplish this.

Adding a Call Button in a Gmail, Outlook, of Office 365 Email Signature

So, how do you add a click-to-call or call button into your email signature? The below steps work for Gmail, Outlook, and Office 365 signatures but can also be used with Yahoo and Hotmail signatures. To include a click-to-call button, you need to:

  1. Create an email signature that includes your business phone number. For example,
    Jane Doe
    Product Manager
    XYZ Tudor Ln, M 339284
    P: +1-345-454-4545
  2. Next, select the text of your phone number and click the “link” 🔗 icon. This is to add a link to the text of your phone number.
  3. In the dialog box, enter “tel:yourphonenumber.” For instance, following the above example, you will add “tel:+1-345-454-4545” in the link dialog box. Remember to include your country dialing code at the beginning of your number (+1 is the US dialing code).
  4. Then, click “Ok” and save your changes.
  5. Test the click-to-call button in your email signature to ensure it works accurately. You can do this by sending yourself an email and clicking the phone number to place a call. Or, by sending an email to a fellow employee and having them click the number to place a call.

Take the Right Steps to Reach More Customers

Whether it is adding click-to-call buttons on your website, social media platforms, and email signatures or using an international toll free number to make it free for local customers to call your business, you need to take the right steps to make your teams more reachable to potential customers. To learn more about improving customer service and finding the right tools, speak with our experts today!

Comparing Phone Number Providers in Saudi Arabia

Source: DepositPhotos.com - Lic#21082797 ID#27446420

Looking for a new provider to purchase a Saudi Arabia toll free phone number for your business? We have compiled a list of providers that you should consider before you make a decision.

Saudi Arabia Toll Free Phone Number Providers

When deciding which Saudi Arabia (KSA) toll free phone number provider provider to go with, one must consider a variety of factors. These factors include: coverage range, provider’s credibility, pricing structure, additional fees, and ease of use. We will look at different Saudi Arabia toll free phone number providers and compare them so that you can make an informed decision.

*Please note that prices mentioned in this article are current prices and are subject to changes and tax inclusions.

Saudi Telecom Company (stc)

Founded in 1998, stc is a company offering various information and communication tech (ICT) solutions, mobile, and digital services for unified communications nationally and regionally in Saudi Arabia.

What they offer:

  • 800 toll free numbers
  • Universal Access Number (UAN) 9200
  • Voicemail
  • SIP trunk service
  • Audio conferencing service
  • Interactive voice response (IVR)
  • Call transfer

Pricing:

Monthly fee: 35 SAR = $9.30
Installation fee: 200 SAR = $53.16

How to get started:

Provide your contact details on their business website to receive more information about their services and to get started on purchasing your Saudi Arabia toll free phone number.

Integrated Telecom (ITC)

Since 2005, ITC has been a telecom provider offering broadband, interconnection, and satellite services to Saudi businesses. ITC offers a Business Trunk service which includes a session initiation protocol (SIP) trunk service along with a Saudi Arabia toll free phone number, UAN, or a vanity number. Furthermore, the service is integrated with voice over internet protocol (VoIP) features such as IP PBX.

What they offer:

  • Toll Free numbers
  • UAN 9200 number
  • SIP Trunk with specified number of channels as needed
  • Vanity Number (Optional)
  • IP PBX system (customer provided)
  • HD voice and video calls
  • Service delivered over Ethernet

Pricing:

Individual consultation to determine business needs.

How to get started:

It is not an easy sign-up process but they do offer a free consultation through their website. Contact customer service to get started on purchasing your KSA toll free phone number.

GO Telecom

Etihad Atheeb Telecommunications Co, also known as GO Telecom, is a fixed-line operator in Saudi Arabia. They offer business phone solutions such as Saudi Arabia toll free phone numbers, Direct Inward Dial Numbers (DIDs), and Direct Outward Dial (DOD) numbers.

What they offer:

  • 800 toll free numbers
  • UAN 9200 number
  • Multiple SIP trunk lines based on your needs
  • IP PBX

Pricing:

Monthly fee: 30 SAR = $7.97
Installation fee: 150 SAR = $39.87

How to get started:

No online sign-up process is available. Call or email customer service to get your Saudi Arabia toll free phone number.

United World Telecom

United World Telecom has been a provider of virtual communication solutions since 1996. They offer local, international, and toll free numbers for more than 160 countries across the globe. In addition, they also provide advanced virtual communication features that enhance internal and external business communication. Their key advantage over local providers is their ability to forward calls internationally.

What they offer:

  • Toll free numbers
  • Different pricing plans
  • Call recording
  • Call forwarding
  • Unlimited Extensions
  • Advanced IVR/PBX
  • Call Transfer
  • Select Country and Time of Day Routing
  • Outbound Calling with Customizable Caller ID
  • Inbound SMS plan
  • Can be used internationally

Pricing:

United World Telecom has 5 different plans based on your business size and the number of minutes needed. Additionally, there are no set-up or installation fees and no long-term contracts. These prices are for their KSA toll free numbers with mobile accessibility.

Basic Value Power Premium Enterprise
Price 98.95 / month 198.95 / month 298.95 / month 398.95 / month 598.95 / month
Monthly Minutes 100 500 901 1,300 2,203

How to get started:

The sign-up process for a Saudi Arabia toll free phone number from United World Telecom is quick and easy. You can sign up online through our homepage, purchase your new toll free number, and activate it in less than a day.

Choosing the Right Provider for Your Needs

Based on your requirements and how you want to set up your business communication system, pick a provider that fits your needs and your budget. Consider these questions: do you want a provider with additional benefits or simply a toll free number? How many features would you like to use? Should your number be accessible internationally? And so on.

To purchase a Saudi Arabia toll free number from United World Telecom, sign up on our homepage or call us at 1 (877) 898 8646 for more information.

How To Set Up Your Business VTech Phone

Source: Stockphoto.com O#100060107233- ID#100067081677

VTech provides phone systems with different components to help organize internal and external communications. An efficient VTech phone system combined with resourceful features of a business number from a reliable phone service provider can help improve the quality of your company’s customer interaction. Learn how to set up a VTech phone system and how to use United World Telecom’s service with it.

Setting Up Your Business VTech Phone

Before you purchase equipment, it is important to purchase a business phone number for your company. Your customer interaction depends on the type of phone number and line you choose to invest in. United World Telecom offers multiple virtual local and international numbers with international call forwarding. Virtual numbers route calls over the internet and with call forwarding, you can direct calls to whichever number you desire. With this service, you can access clients across the world with a reasonable payment plan and a good internet connection.

Once you have a business phone number and phone lines purchased, you can start setting up your VTech phone system. VTech systems come with a main console connected to analog phone lines and additional devices that are connected to the console wirelessly. VTech offers a variety of devices that you can choose from depending on your preference and company size. The main devices included are a main console, extension desk sets, and extension handsets. You can also get cordless headsets and cordless speakerphones.

Setting Up The Main Console

The Main Console is the main component of the business phone system. And other systems cannot work without it. The console can be expanded with up to 9 extension desk sets, extension handsets, cordless headsets, or cordless speakerphones. With these options, you can customize and create a phone system that best suits the needs of your office.

The devices communicate with the main console over wireless DECT technology. Therefore, you do not need to plug telephone lines into cordless devices, but only into the main console. You can also use the main console as a telephone with a single user using up to 4 telephone lines. You can purchase multiple telephone lines through United World Telecom.

To install the main console:

Step #1: Install the optional backup battery by inserting 4 AA batteries at the back of the console. This will be useful in case of a power failure.
Step #2: Next, install the mounting bracket for tabletop use by inserting fixed tabs on the mounting bracket into the desired slot. There are two locations for high or low visibility.
Step #3: Connect the handset cord by plugging one end of the cord into the handset jack on the side of the console.
Step #4: Then, connect telephone lines at the back of the console, open the line jack cover, and plug one end of the telephone line into the telephone line jack (L1, L2, L3, or L4). Plug the other into the telephone wall outlet.

Note: Repeat this for all the telephones lines you wish to connect. If you have two two-line wall outlets, plug one line in L1/2 and the other in L3/4. Do not connect a fifth or sixth line in the empty L2 or L4 jacks.

Step #5:
Next, connect the power by inserting the smaller end of the power adapter into the power jack at the back of the console. Plug the other end to a power outlet not controlled by a wall switch.
Step #6: Finally, test for a dial tone. Give the console a few minutes to start up and enter idle mode. When it is in idle mode, press each of the available line keys to test for a dial tone. If you hear a dial tone for each line, the installation was successful and you can now make and receive calls.

vtech phone how to
Source: DepositPhotos.com – Lic#226811262 ID#27446420

Connecting the Cordless Extension Deskset

In order to use the cordless extension desk set as part of your VTech phone system, it must be registered to the main console.
First, install the rechargeable backup battery by plugging the battery connector securely into the socket inside the battery compartment.
Then, install the mounting bracket, connect the coiled handset, and connect the power.

To register the cordless extension desk set to the main console:

Step #1: Press Menu/Select on the main console.
Step #2: Select Registration.
Step #3: Then, select Register Extension.
Step #4: Then, press # on the extension desk set.
Step #5: The desk set screen will display Registering. Registration may take up to 60 seconds.
Step #6: Once registration is complete, both desk sets will show Desk set X Registered, where ‘X’ is the extension number of the device. This is unique across each system and cannot be changed.
Step #7: While the desk set is in idle mode, lift the corded handset. If you hear a dial tone, the registration was successful.
Step #8: Repeat the same steps to add another extension desk set to your business VTech phone system.

Installing the Cordless Handset

Cordless handsets are not stand-alone phones and must also be registered with the main console. Here’s how to install the cordless handset:

  • First, plug the smaller end of the power adapter to the handset charger and the larger end into a power outlet not controlled by a wall switch.
  • Then, install the battery by connecting the battery connector into the socket inside the handset battery compartment.
  • Next, place the handset in the charger to charge.

To register a cordless handset with the main console:

Follow the instructions for registering extension desk sets (mentioned above) as the registration process is the same. Once registered, test for dial tones. And repeat these steps to add additional handsets.

United World Telecom with VTech Phone Systems

Once you have all the devices ready to go, you can customize your phone service and lines with United World Telecom. Get additional benefits of call forwarding, call recording, unlimited extensions, call transfers, and more. You can make use of an interactive voice response (IVR) system to automatically direct calls to voicemail or other extensions. With all of this setup, all you will have to do is answer or make calls and focus on your business. These systems together make communication manageable and convenient. Sign up for a business phone number with United World Telecom today and get your phone system all sorted out.

How to Build a Local Sales Network From Any Location

Source: DepositPhotos.com - Lic#9016491 ID#27446420

To successfully sell and promote any product or service, you need a strong sales team. A good sales team will highlight the strengths of the product and the company. They will maintain professionalism and credibility and good customer relations. Sales teams work in communication with each other and with customers. It is, therefore, essential to have a local sales network that is easily reachable and dependable.

Building A Local Sales Network

To build a strong local sales network, you need to hire resourceful talent and train them in the best ways to target potential customers. Once your sales team is ready, you can focus efforts on promoting the product in the sales circuit.

Ready, Set, Network

The first step to start a sales network is to begin a search for connections and talents. Use LinkedIn or other career sites to scout and build connections with people in your field and who would be a good addition to your team. Use these platforms to search for and connect with potential customers. Generate connections and start conversations about your product and brand.

Consider Forming A Virtual Sales Team

With many employees switching to a work-from-home lifestyle, you may want to consider a virtual office. This does not only work for your employees but also gives you a chance to move outside the bounds of a specific location. You can look to expand your business to other countries and hire remote employees there to help customers locally. This way you can bring international clientele to your company.

Develop A Full-Proof Hiring Process

After scouting and researching, you may have a strong pool of salespeople to pick from. And so, you want to pay attention to the hiring process and what skills or factors matter to you the most. For instance, do you want someone who comes with years of experience? Or, do you want someone fresh who can be trained and coached for your business’ specific needs? Have them do a “Sell me a …” test to see the practical application of their talents. Also, ask for recommendations and reach out to them to develop a better picture of your candidate.

Besides sales skills, you want to look for good personal skills in your local sales network. Working in a team requires good team management and communication skills, and your ideal candidate should have them. This is even more necessary for a remote team as a lot of your communication will happen through emails and video calls.

Train, Train, and Train Again

Because your company will differ from other companies in one way or the other, training at the beginning is very important. Even if your hired talent has years of experience, ensure they go through training that highlights the tasks they will experience at your enterprise. Besides the initial training, perform analysis and conduct ongoing training to refresh important goals and skills. Create videos, webinars, buy educational books, do trivia nights: whatever you need to keep them up to date.

local sales network
Source: DepositPhotos.com – Lic#:10312371 ID#27446420

Other Tools and Resources

Consider communication and project management tools to make the organization and completion of work easy and clear. You can use Google Drive, Dropbox, or Microsoft Office to share and maintain files. Or, subscribe to a project management system like Teamwork or Slack to have all work communication, project status, etc. in one place. With these systems, employers can keep track of employees’ work and progress. Additionally, teams can collaborate together on shared files and shared projects. Customer relationship management (CRM) systems may also include statistics and metrics to track sales and responses.

For easy communication, consider getting a virtual business phone number with a voice over internet protocol (VoIP) system. Rather than traditional phone lines, VoIP phone systems use the internet to make and receive calls. You can easily sign up for one from a phone service provider that offers virtual, local, and toll free numbers. Providers like United World Telecom offer call forwarding services that forward or redirect incoming calls to a different number, where the call is to be answered. This way, you can forward calls to wherever your employees are located. With United World Telecom’s ‘Time of Day Routing’ feature, you can redirect calls to alternate numbers during specific times of the day. These features are meant to ensure no call goes missed and a salesperson is always available for your customers.

Generate Awareness and Familiarity

Spend a great deal of time working and developing your website. Most customers will look to your website for information and help. Therefore, their first impression of your website matters. It is also necessary to keep information on the website up to date. Provide educational and informational material with facts and genuine expert opinions through blogs and web content. The more your customer knows about your product, the more likely they will be to give it a try.

Use social media like Twitter, Facebook, etc., to create more visibility for your brand, product, and company. This is a good way to introduce your product to the sales circuit. Follow-up with customers through emails, special promotions, and more. Your current customers are a way to get referrals and new customers. Keep them coming for more.

Make Sales From Any Location

Advancements in technology have improved the way we communicate and sales teams can use this to their advantage. Build a local sales network anywhere with local numbers and make sales globally with virtual phone numbers. Browse through our plans today to see how we can help you make those sales calls and support your network!

How To Start a Home Telecom Call Center Business

Source: DepositPhotos.com - Lic#211239316 ID#27446420

Thinking of ditching your regular 9 to 5 job for one with more flexibility? A home telecom call center is just what you are looking for. With better work hours and less commuting, this work-from-home job can give you a great sense of work-life balance. So, what is a home telecom call center and how can you start one? Read on to learn more!

Virtual Call Centers

Virtual call centers offer a variety of services: sales, telemarketing, customer service, making reservations and appointments. They are hired by major companies to handle customer communication in an organized and easy manner. For example, these may include customer service for an eCommerce giant or booking hotel reservations for a travel agency. Inbound call centers often have a high volume of incoming calls. On the other hand, outbound calling is when a call center is making calls to customers for sales purposes.

What Do You Need?

Before you start your call center, research businesses or call center companies looking for remote help. Depending on the type of home telecom call center you want to run, you will need to invest in some equipment to unify processes. With respect to virtual centers, you will need to consider state and local requirements. And finally, you’ll need marketing tools to promote your service.

How To Start A Home Telecom Call Center

Let’s have a look at the different steps to keep in mind when starting a home telecom call center business.

Step 1: Research Job Opportunities and Fields

Spend time looking at the variety of options available for your industry, product, or service. Is there a surplus of call centers offering the same service as you? How can you stand out and be more resourceful? Consider extending your services to other states and countries. With a virtual set-up, you can reach clients anywhere in the world. The entire world is within your grasp. Here, you can also decide if you want to run an inbound or outbound call center.

Step 2: Check Local and State Requirements

Since starting a home telecom center is a business, you will need to file all necessary new-business paperwork. Review your state’s Office of Finance and Taxation. Then, check for zoning restrictions. Finally, register your business.

home telecom call center
Source: DepositPhotos.com – Lic#119344282 ID#27446420

Step 3: Prepare a Business Plan

An important part of starting your own business, whether large or small, is to have a clear idea of how you are going to run it. This is where a business plan comes in. A strong plan will outline the necessary documentation, market research, profit projections, and finances for the company. This way, you are prepared for what is to come and have options to handle it.

Step 4: Invest in Call Center Equipment and Software

This goes without saying that a call center cannot run without the appropriate equipment and software. Your equipment or software may depend on what your client uses. For a home telecom system, you can choose a call center software that you consider comfortable and resourceful. Call center software is a system that enables easy call tracking and organization. Either way, you want to have the basics: a computer with the latest operating system, broadband internet, wired telephone, and a good quality headset.

Step 5: Get A Virtual Phone Number

Virtual phone numbers can help you create a virtual space enabling you to make and receive calls through the internet. This way, calling international customers won’t be as expensive as calling through a regular phone service. Additionally, virtual numbers such as toll free or local numbers are less expensive for customers to use. Toll free numbers bill the received party instead of the caller and local numbers will have regular, local charges. This way, you are not a burden for your customers.

Step 6: Market Your Skills

Build a website and use social media like career sites, Facebook, Twitter, etc, to promote your skills and talents. Marketing your home telecom business starts with marketing yourself. Tell them what you have to offer: call center experience, fluency in multiple languages, knowledge of call center software, and so on.

  Cost-Effective Communication

One of the main items you will need for your call center is virtual phone numbers. United World Telecom has local and toll free virtual numbers in more than 150 countries across the world. Sign up for a virtual phone number with United World Telecom today and develop a cost-effective communication channel for your home call center.

Traveling for Business? How To Get Your Passport

Source: DepositPhotos.com - Lic#47371763 ID#27446420

Traveling for business is essential to creating and maintaining a global presence for your company. Often, you will need to travel to encourage new prospects to come aboard or to maintain good relations with existing customers and investors. These trips may be local, within the country, and sometimes abroad. If you haven’t already started expanding your business to other countries, now is the time to go global. And for traveling abroad, you will need a very important document: a passport. So, how do you get your passport and what else do you need to keep in mind when traveling for business? Read on to learn more!

How To Get Your Passport

Getting a US passport is a very simple process. All you need is a filled passport application form and the necessary documentation. Once the application is complete, the passport takes about 6-8 weeks to process. Here are the steps for how to get your passport:

Fill Out A DS-11 (Passport Application) Form

One of the most asked questions is: can you apply for your passport online? You can start the application process online or in-person. However, you will need to visit a passport acceptance facility to complete the application. To start the application online, use the Passport Application Wizard and fill out the application. Once completed, print the application and take it to the passport acceptance facility. Note that passport applications can not be submitted online.

Otherwise, download the form, complete the application, and go to a local passport acceptance facility to submit it. Whichever way you decide to start the application, remember: do not sign the form until you are instructed to do so in front of a designated official.

Personal Documents and IDs

Along with your passport application form, you will need to provide documentation providing your birth and citizenship information. Documents required are:

How-To-Get-Your-Passport
Source: DepositPhotos.com – Lic#230834940 ID#27446420

1) Original proof of citizenship document and a photocopy of the document. One of the following is necessary:

  • US birth certificate
  • Certificate of naturalization
  • Certificate of citizenship
  • Consular report of birth abroad or certification of birth

2) Acceptable photo ID and a photocopy of the ID. One of the following:

  • Driver’s license
  • Government employee ID
  • US military ID
  • Current (valid) foreign passport

Acceptable Passport Photo

Next, bring passport-size photos, which can be easily taken at your local pharmacy or grocery store. Ensure that your photos have the following requirements:

  • Color photo
  • Taken in the last 6 months
  • Printed on matte or glossy photo-quality paper
  • Neutral expression with eyes open
  • Size: 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm)

Calculate Your Fees

Fees are based on whether you are applying for an adult (age 16 or older) or child and whether you want a passport book or card or both. According to the U.S. Department of State website, these are the current fees for passport books and cards:

Product Application Fee Execution (Acceptance) Fee
Adult
Passport Book $110 $35
Passport Card $30 $35
Passport Book & Card $140 $35
Child
Passport Book $80 $35
Passport Card $15 $35
Passport Book & Card $95 $35

Submit The Application

Once you have completed the application, provided all necessary documentation, and paid the fees in-person at a passport acceptance facility, you have completed the process. Now, you wait for the agency to process your request.

Can You Get Your Passport Sooner?

The standard time for processing a passport is 6-8 weeks. However, this process can be expedited for special circumstances such as a life or death emergency or urgent international travel plans. Keep in mind that expedited processing has an additional fee. See the Get My Passport Fast page for more information.

Happy and Comfortable Travels!

Besides getting your passport ready, there are a couple of other things to keep in mind. For example, do you need to get a visa for the destination country? Also, check for travel warnings and advisories. Buy travel insurance and register your trip with the U.S Department of State.

You may also want to consider getting a business phone number from a virtual phone service provider like United World Telecom. With a virtual phone number, you can forward work calls from your office to your business number so that you do not miss any work calls when traveling. United World Telecom also offers local business numbers. Now that you know how to get your passport, sign up for a business phone number and be in touch with your customers while on the go.

How To Create a Phone Survey with IVR

Source: Depositphotos.com Lic#162768548 ID#110586676

As a business, you know that listening to your customers’ wants and needs will help you to survive in today’s fast-paced economy. However, not every customer is forthright enough to comment on your business’ operations. However, the best way to go about finding out about their experiences with your business and potential pain points is simply by asking them with a phone survey.

The Amazingness of Phone Surveys

A valuable resource for your business because you can get direct feedback from your customers, the power of phone surveys is monumental. This feedback, in turn, leads to higher levels of customer satisfaction, loyalty, and – above all – shows that your customers’ opinions actually matter.

Thanks to advancements in cloud-based telephony and voice-recognition technology, you can optimize your phone surveys with IVR. Short for Interactive Voice Response, phone surveys with IVR offer recipients an easy way to provide feedback. Instead of online surveys, where participants can click through complicated questions with multiple choice answers, IVR-based phone surveys enable more direct communication. Either by simply pressing corresponding numbers or by using their voice, customers can provide honest feedback in the most efficient way possible.

Creating IVR Phone Surveys

In this article, we’ll cover how to create a phone survey with IVR to get the results your business needs to succeed, including:

  • Signing up with United World Telecom
  • Determining the Right Type of IVR Survey for Your Business
  • Best Practices for Creating IVR-based Phone Surveys

Signing Up With United World Telecom

The most obvious step to creating a phone survey with IVR is by utilizing United World Telecom’s services. United World Telcom’s top-notch IVR technology allows you to easily send polls and surveys to customers. Using United World Telecom’s API, you can also customize your IVR system to suit more complex needs. To learn more, read this article about IVR and contact United World Telecom to walk you through the process.

Determining the Right Type of IVR Phone Survey for Your Business

Not all phone surveys serve the same function. Phone surveys offer endless usages depending on the type that you choose. Let’s look at some of the most widely-used types:

Inbound IVR Phone Survey: Customers or leads receive an invitation to participate in a survey by calling a phone number. This is normally sent through email, letters, or other types of printed marketing material.
Call Transfer IVR Phone Survey: At the beginning of the call, current customers will receive invitations to participate. From there, they will transfer to a pre-recorded survey after their transaction or service call concludes. (Note: These are also referred to as “post-call IVR surveys”)
Outbound IVR Phone Survey: Invitations are broadcasted to a target audience (via radio, video, etc.) asking them to participate in a survey.

How To Create a Phone Survey with IVR
Source: Depositphotos.com Lic#162781640 ID#191870774

Best Practices for Creating IVR-based Phone Surveys

Once you’ve determined what type of IVR phone survey you need, there are some best practices you should follow to get the best results and honest feedback. Below are several best practices to create engaging IVR surveys that achieve the results you want.

Determining Specific Goals for your IVR Phone Survey

Nothing causes customers more anguish than a survey that doesn’t seem to have a clear purpose. Before crafting a survey, you should brainstorm why you need the survey. It’s obvious that you want to improve your company by offering a phone survey, but you’ll want to target specific aspects of your company. For instance, you may want to improve customer service, so creating customer-service-oriented questions is a smart decision. Or, perhaps you want to determine which products your company should offer. For this, you want to ask them specifically what they would like to see improved and/or available.

Remain Concise Through the Process

The longer the survey, the fewer results you’re likely to achieve as customers will likely lose interest and drop off. Most phone surveys should take less than five minutes total – and for callers that have already been on the phone, that time is even shorter. Remember, it is better to get some feedback than none. Also, you’ll want to mention how long the survey takes. No one wants to get stuck on the phone or have a sense that it will never end.

Use Simple and Precise Language

Keep your phone surveys simple. Even if you deal with highly-technical products and services, avoid including words and phrases that aren’t normally used in everyday speech. The danger is that those surveyed might misinterpret these words/phrases and provide feedback that isn’t accurate.

Test Your Phone Survey

It’s a very wise idea to do a few dry-runs before launching an IVR phone survey. In other words, do not launch the survey until you’re confident it meets your criteria and flows well. You may notice that a specific question causes most people to drop off the survey. Or, you may want to add questions that clarify positive and negative responses.

With great service comes great power

Surveys are one of the best ways to gauge your customers’ experiences and get a feel for how they benefit from your services. With the information offered, we hope you will take advantage of the option of creating simple yet wholly user-friendly surveys via IVR. Effective and cost-friendly, this method can help you get the feedback you need to continuously provide great service and products that meet the needs of your clients.

How To Set Up a Business Phone System in your Office

Source: Depositphotos.com Lic#158404048 ID#285781720

Need to give customers a way to reach your business by telephone? Setting up a business phone system is something nearly every business owner will have to do at some point. Get to know the process before diving in. This way, you can have a clear sense of how to get set up quickly and effectively. In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of how to set up the best business phone system for your office. Thus, you can get back to helping your customers.

Step 1: Choosing the Right Type of Business Phone System for Your Office

Before you can go about setting up your business phone system, you’ll have to choose between the various types. Since they all work a bit differently, different systems may be better for different businesses, based on specific needs. Some of the best business phone systems include the following options.

A Multi-Line Phone System

This type of phone system can handle multiple calls at once. This is because they all route to a main system that can then transfer calls to connected business lines. It uses traditional copper wiring. So, they are more basic and may not offer as many features as other phone systems. But, they’re easy to operate, as they’re very traditional. And, they’re known for being sturdy and reliable systems. Finally, they can be set up with both toll-free and local business numbers. So, multi-line systems may be a great option for many types of businesses.

Using a PBX Phone System

A PBX system offers all the same functionality of the multi-line system, but it has one major difference. Rather than housing all calling data in one main telephone unit, it’s all routed to a separate, centralized device. Or, rather than a device, a cloud (internet) software. Plus, it’s highly adjustable as it’s basically a personalized phone system for the office. So, it can offer a number of customizable features that may make doing business easier and more efficient.

VoIP Phone System

This phone system connects phone calls to business phone lines using broadband internet connection rather than traditional copper wiring. This makes phone calls on these systems fast and reliable as there is internet access all over the world. This offers the ability to house a number of business phone numbers and lines from one business office. And, provides other capabilities like the option to connect various business software to your phone lines like your internet CRM. Finally, since it works over the internet, you don’t have to have a physical business phone unit to utilize it. So, you can route calls directly to any telephone you want, including mobile devices.

best business phone system
Source: Depositphotos.com Lic#158315940 ID#4097042

A Few Notes About Cloud-Based Systems

It’s important to note that both VoIP and PBX phone systems are cloud based phone systems. A cloud based business phone system is essentially a phone system that uses the internet. But, it does so to store business phone call data and connect calls. The internet business phone system is the most commonly used and set up for business needs. So, the following instructions will apply to these types of systems.

Step 2: Choosing Your Service

Once you’ve chosen the best business phone system for your office, you need to choose a phone service. So, choose one that can meet your needs. Certainly, you want to choose a company that can offer all business phone services in one place. If so, consider the business phone systems from United World Telecom. UWT offers virtual phone numbers, toll free numbers, and local numbers of all kinds.

Step 3: Choosing Your Business Phone Number(s)

After you have chosen your phone service, you can go about selecting the type of business phone number you want. And, the number to go with that line. If you want to offer your consumers a free, easy-to-remember phone number, choose a toll free number. Or, select a vanity number that’s relatable to your business by choosing digits associated with letters on the phone keypad. Want to call specific audience bases in certain areas of the world? You can select a local phone number so your business number has the same area code as your target audience.

Step 4: Choose Your Business Phone Features

You know the ins and outs of your business phone system, who your provider is, and have chosen your number. Now, it’s time to select from the various features of a business phone line. If you go with United World Telecom, you’ll have a number of virtual number features to choose from including:

Choose the features you know that your business can benefit from. And, set them up before starting to take calls. Once you have features chosen, you can begin passing out your new business phone numbers and taking business calls!

In Closing: Getting Help Setting Up Your Business Phone Line

Interested in the best business phone system for your office? Contact United World Telecom today to receive top-rated service for your business phone line system. And, take advantage of all of the cloud-based phone system features for your new business phone system.