While Skype was originally developed with consumer use in mind – international calling of friends and family — surveys are showing that around 30% of regular users are using Skype for business communications. As a result Skype is starting to put an emphasis on the needs of small-to-medium businesses (SMB’s) with operations and/or customers spread around the world.
A large portion of this site had been designed to assist those businesses who want to incorporate Skype into their business processes. Customer relationship management, training sessions and support infrastructure are all activities where Skype is facilitating both the generation and sustainment of business relationships. Links below and across the top of this page have been set up to provide the information you need for understanding how Skype can help your various business processes and to provide instructions for getting set up with Skype.
So how does a business, enterprise or organization get started with Skype?
- Read through the Skype Overview to get a handle on the potential for Skype as tool for business conversations.
- Visit Skype Business Solutions which provides an more detailed overview of the third party offerings that allow use of Skype for collaboration activities, call center management, business relationship building, faxing and overall Skype call management.
- Getting set up with Skype: there are two levels — individual Skype accounts and Business Control Panel.
- Individual accounts: individuals can set up and manage personal Skype accounts, maintain contact lists (directories) and hold voice, video and/or chat conversations, manage conference calls and take advantage of other Skype features such as file transfer and SMS messaging. Individuals must purchase Skype Pro and other services on an individual basis using credit cards and/or PayPal.
- Business Accounts: through the Skype Business Control Panel, a designated business communications manager can register their business. That manager can then create Skype accounts for the business’s employees and external partners, such as contractors and even specific customer bases, if appropriate. The business manager can purchase up to €1,000 (~$1,600) of Skype credits for assignment to each individual Skype account registered via the Business Control Panel.