Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system



  • Re: What Are You Doing Right Now

    @eddiejennings said in What Are You Doing Right Now:

    Crunching numbers. New FreePBX system means all potential independent contractors could use it for calling. I figure it's wise to get some estimates of cost from increased usage before I have to answer "Hey, Eddie! What if we were to have all the independent contractors make calls?"

    What exactly does this mean. Because depending on what you are actually meaning, FreePBX may not be the right solution. Once you start adding third parties, you quickly get into multi-tenancy territory and that is not what FreePBX is designed to do.



  • Folks that process submitted shops and who help get shops scheduled all work from home as independent contractors of my company. If they have to call a shopper, they do so with whatever phone they have. Rather than having a phone which talks to our Altigen PBX.



  • Right now, folks that would call the office to talk to one of these people, are sent to a voice mailbox (each one of these folks has a virtual extension). Altigen PBX E-mails the voice mail message to the person. They respond as they need with their own phone service.



  • Right now we have 40 people between our office and work-from home that connect to our on-premises Altigen PBX, for a variety of reasons not all 40 are using it simltaneously. At this moment 24 people have logged into their extensions and would be making / receiving calls. We have 200 virtual extensions, which just receive and forward voicemail as described above.

    At some point, I know 70 of those 200 extensions (all of these folks are work-from-home folks) will need the capacity to make.



  • @eddiejennings okay, so these are basically employees that belong on the PBX, for all that you classify them as independent contractors.

    For this, I would not use virtual extensions if you think you will ever set up an actual extension for calling. I say this for three reasons.

    1. There are no costs with either method
    2. An extension can have various follow me options
    3. If you later decide to let a user with a virtual extension actually get an extension, you have to delete and add, thus making the user set everything back up.


  • @jaredbusch said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    @eddiejennings okay, so these are basically employees that belong on the PBX, for all that you classify them as independent contractors.

    Correct. I'm finding that terms such as "independent contractor" have vastly different meanings at my gig than the rest of the world. 😛

    For this, I would not use virtual extensions if you think you will ever set up an actual extension for calling. I say this for three reasons.

    1. There are no costs with either method
    2. An extension can have various follow me options
    3. If you later decide to let a user with a virtual extension actually get an extension, you have to delete and add, thus making the user set everything back up.

    I agree and did not intend to set up these folks with virtual extensions -- that's how they're setup now. Since I know that management is wanting one block of these folks to start making calls through our phone system, I figured it would be wise to start estimating minutes usage assuming everyone would be making calls.

    These people are located all round the United States and work at various times, so it's unlikely that we'd have 240 people active simultaneously, which I why I figure the folks using softphones or hardphones (since they wouldn't have to use Altigen specific stuff) connecting to our FreePBX instance would work.



  • @eddiejennings said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    I figured it would be wise to start estimating minutes usage assuming everyone would be making calls.

    Don't waste your time. People have no idea how long they are ever actually on the phone. Just tell mangement that as soon as they add people they will be able to track it and also stop paying for whatever method these people currently expense the company for communications.



  • @jaredbusch said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    @eddiejennings said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    I figured it would be wise to start estimating minutes usage assuming everyone would be making calls.

    Don't waste your time. People have no idea how long they are ever actually on the phone. Just tell mangement that as soon as they add people they will be able to track it and also stop paying for whatever method these people currently expense the company for communications.

    The ability to track calls is what helped me convince management to go the route of FreePBX over Altigen. There are rules in place for how many calls these folks should make, but the measuring method relies on the people themselves manually logging calls. Obviously Altigen has CDR, but the expense required to get these folks to be able to make calls is not acceptable.



  • WOW - the home contractors just use their own home phone/cell phone? how do they keep people from calling them back directly? Do they use *ab to block their outgoing number? What a PITA!

    Also, does their pay include some type of incentive to use their own phone line/system to return these calls? will you be able to reduce their pay when you take on this cost directly yourself?



  • @dashrender said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    WOW - the home contractors just use their own home phone/cell phone? how do they keep people from calling them back directly? Do they use *ab to block their outgoing number? What a PITA!

    sniff sniff Smells like someone is trying to think something through. 😛

    Also, does their pay include some type of incentive to use their own phone line/system to return these calls?

    Not to my knowledge.

    will you be able to reduce their pay when you take on this cost directly yourself?

    I imagine some adjustment would be made. That decision is beyond my pay grade.



  • @eddiejennings said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    Also, does their pay include some type of incentive to use their own phone line/system to return these calls?

    Not to my knowledge.

    will you be able to reduce their pay when you take on this cost directly yourself?

    I imagine some adjustment would be made. That decision is beyond my pay grade.

    Why would you assume an adjustment would be made if you have no knowledge that the contractors are getting an incentive to use their own phone to make outgoing calls?



  • @dashrender Logically, I shouldn't make that assumption. The assumption is based on a gut feeling fueled by some experience.



  • @eddiejennings said in Independant Contractors on a FreePBX system:

    @dashrender Logically, I shouldn't make that assumption. The assumption is based on a gut feeling fueled by some experience.

    I gotcha - if I'm a contractor, and that's not a spelled out benefit, and it's clear that the benefit is being removed because I'm no longer using my own phone, I'd be rather unhappy at the pay cut.


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