Is Your Business in a PBX Upgrade Cycle?

Buying a PBX in 2010 equated to a vote for ratcheting-up employee productivity, argue analysts at the Eastern Management Group.

A new PBX, costing $1,200 per seat on average, gave companies permission to hold the line in other areas, according to John Malone, Eastern Management analyst.

The argument is that companies upgraded phone systems as an alternative to hiring people.

In part, that view is driven by information technology managers who say productivity improvement drove 38 percent of all PBX purchases in 2010. This was 15 percent more responses than the “needed a new PBX to replace an old one” justification.

Company relocation and company expansion were responsible for only a modest proportion of PBX sales worldwide, says Malone.

But other explanations are possible. The survey data suggests that about half of respondents in four out of six size categories are in a “PBX upgrade cycle.” Granted, many of us do not follow the PBX market, so perhaps that is a “typical” percentage of firms actually in an “upgrade” position in a single year.

Many of us might guess the number of firms looking to “upgrade” (“replace”) a business phone system in a given year might range between 14 percent and 16 percent. A response ranging from a low of about 35 percent up to about 50 percent might strike an observer as unusual.

The global market for PBX systems in 2010 was $59 billion. This is $7.5 billion larger than 2009, Eastern Management says. Global PBX Sales Surged to $59 Billion in 2010

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