Soften the softphone blow
July 19, 2012 6:10 AM   Subscribe

How can I make the move to softphones work best for my team?

My office is transitioning from our current VOIP handsets to softphones for everyone. We're starting with a pilot program with one of my teams, and I want to make it as comfortable and easy as possible.

Several people who have tried softphones in the past have complained that the headsets were uncomfortable, and one person pointed out that it will be clunky to switch between music headphones and phone headphones.

So... I'm looking for recommendations for great, comfortable phone headsets AND wondering if there is an easy "switch" to plug two kinds of headphones into a computer and just toggle back and forth between the headphones you're using? We'll still have to change what headphones we're wearing, but it would be nice not to have to change at the plug, too.

OR, is there some awesome solution to this that I don't know about?
posted by rosa to Technology (3 answers total)
Plantronics makes some really comfy wireless headsets. You can have them set to activate when you take a call, and have the music headphones plugged in the whole time, which would require switching earpieces whenever someone is on the phone. Depending on how often your team uses the phone and whether they expect to receive calls throughout the day this is still clunky and was too annoying for us.

A better solution is buying more expensive wired headsets that are good enough to listen to music on, but can deal with the calls as well.
posted by sarahnicolesays at 6:51 AM on July 19, 2012

Seconding the Plantronics headsets. I've use headsets from Logitech, and they simply aren't as comfortable for long term wear as the Plantronics headsets are. You might want to check out to see what's available, but be aware that if you purchase something from them, they will send you e-mails from now until the heat death of the Universe. With headsets that you're going to wear all day, it is truly a matter of you get what you pay for. When we switched from our hard phones to our softphones, we were given cheap headsets, and I think everyone discarded those within a few days and purchased their own.

As for switching headsets, that has never been an issue for me, so I can't really speak to that. On our softphone PBX system, I get a notification on the screen when a call is coming in, so I can put on my headset to answer the phone. Again, this will depend on how often you're on the phone. When I worked support, I had my headset on all day, and never listened music. Now that I'm not in support, my phone might ring two or three times a week, so I just play music and get the phone when needed.
posted by ralan at 7:22 AM on July 19, 2012

Thank you!
posted by rosa at 10:50 AM on July 23, 2012

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