Equipment & Other

Set up Utilities

Phone and Power Supply
Check that you will be able to get telephones and power connected. If you are located outside the normal service areas then see the phone and power companies about supply. Get your applications in as soon as you have organised your home premises for the studio or offices. See what is required to have computer cabling and internet lines such as ADSL or Cable or other Broadband put in by the time you move in.

Standard Telephones
Almost every business will use a telephone, perhaps as their main form of communication. Telephones are available today with many different features and the prices will vary accordingly. If you are away from your home office premises, then you will need an answering machine to take those missed calls: be sure that you leave a professional message that clearly identifies your company.

If you share a phone between your business and personal calls, then it is a good idea to have a 'caller ID'. This way, you can answer the phone appropriately (in a professional manner for business calls) by recognising the incoming caller (if number is unidentified, than presume it is a business call).

Cordless Telephones
A cordless phone can provide you with a business phone that does not restrict you to a desk or office. You can carry it with you and take calls from anywhere in the office. This is particularly useful if you have a home office, and wish to take business calls whilst not remaining in the office. Cordless phones generally have a range of about 50-100 metres indoors, and up to 300 metres outdoors.

There are many models available that give you more than one handset (normally up to 4), this means you can leave one in the office and take one with you. It is also possible for one phone to call (page) another, meaning that an employee can contact you quickly without needing to find you beforehand.

Mobile Phones
You may feel that it is important for customers to get hold of you should you be away from the home premises. The ideal solution would be the purchase of a mobile phone, which gives you constant availability (unless you turn it off!) and allows you to communicate quickly with your office, customers, or suppliers.

It is important to buy a phone that matches your needs, there are so many different types and features available it is easy to waste hundreds of pounds on technology you will never use. Are features such as WAP, GPRS, Colour Screens, Infra-red, etc worth paying for if all you are making is a few basic calls?

Fax / Cordless Phone / Answer Machine
There are a small number of fax machines that combine a cordless phone instead of the usual corded phone. This saves you money on the cost of individual units, and allows you to use the phone without the need to remain by the unit at all times. These units also tend to come with an answer machine, combining three facilities into one product.

A combined fax and digital cordless phone unit with answer machine will cost from about £150 upwards. There are only one or two models available, and future models with analogue cordless phones or no answering machine are likely to be a reasonable amount cheaper than this.