The Top 6 Small Business Phone Systems in Australia

Business phone systems

The best small business phone system in Australia is Nexgen, offering super advanced hardware, a reliable network, and excellent customer service. In close second comes RingCentral, which boasts a fantastic range of over 50 features.

Of course, no two small businesses are the same, and what suits one company may not suit yours. Informed by our extensive, small-business-focused research, the reviews on this page will help you decide which of Australia’s six best phone systems is right for you.

You can also try our free quote-finding tool to receive and compare personalised quotes from the best small business phone systems for your team.

Small business phone systemBest for…Price (per user, per month)
NexgenBest overall small business phone systemQuotes available on request
RingCentralBest range of featuresFrom $22.99
OomaBest low-cost optionFrom $19.95
ComsourceBest for very small officesFrom $20.50
8×8Best for small to medium-sized businessesFrom $24
NextivaBest for network reliabilityFrom $18.95

1. Nexgen

Best overall small business phone system

As a home-grown, Australian-owned phone systems company, Nexgen is in a great position to understand the needs of your small business. But it's also an established name in the telephony industry, having partnered with NEC and Panasonic to produce the most advanced hardware on the market. 

Nexgen has strong network running speeds to ensure that your phone system’s never down, and customer reviews often cite Nexgen’s friendly customer service as a big pro.

Pros

  • Award-winning small business with Australia-based customer support
  • Excellent customer service

Cons

  • Rates only available on a quote-by-quote basis
  • Customer reviews are difficult to come by – they're only present on Google Reviews

How much does Nexgen cost?

Nexgen doesn't share its monthly fees publicly, so we can't advise you on how much it'll cost overall. However, we do know that Nexgen charges the following call rates:

  • Local calls: From 10 cents flat rate
  • National calls: From 10 cents a minute
  • Calls to mobile: From 20 cents a minute

What do Nexgen's small business customers say?

Nexgen Australia doesn't appear to have much of a presence on any of the popular online review sites for business software. However, we were able to find some customer insight on Google Reviews. Here's the most helpful review from a small business owner:

“Fantastic customer service – and this is what we wanted! Maurice was my first contact and didn't make me feel just like a number in the line. Any enquiries that we've had during the changeover process, Ivy has provided immediate answers to and kept us informed of each step that needed to be taken. The technician was thorough and took the time to explain what he was doing. I would highly recommend Nexgen to any small business who is not happy with their current provider.”

– Steven Rismondo, Google Reviews, July 2021


2. RingCentral

Best range of features

RingCentral understands that communication is central to the way companies work, and offers an all-in-one unified communication (UC) solution that offers a range of helpful features – RingCentral Office.

Suitable for businesses of all sizes, including small businesses, RingCentral Office boasts over 50 call features including call forwarding, cell phone number extensions, and caller ID, the ability to integrate your system with G Suite, Dropbox, and Microsoft, and video calling and instant messaging.

Pros

  • 24/7 customer support
  • Automated greeting and call direction to maintain professionalism
  • Mobile app for you to take business calls from your cell phone
  • Over 50 features to help improve your communication processes

Cons

  • More expensive than Ooma and Nextiva

How much does RingCentral cost?

RingCentral Office is available in four price plans. The more expensive the plan, the more sophisticated your phone system will be – but small businesses will likely find all the functionality they need on the cheaper packages.

PlanPrice for two to 99 users (billed annually)
Essentials$22.99 per user, per month
Standard$37.99 per user, per month
Premium$45.99 per user, per month
Ultimate$66.99 per user, per month

What do RingCentral's small business customers say?

“Perfect product for an SME. Very pleased, RingCentral serves us extremely well. We have offices in the UK, Italy and the Philippines and can all use the conferencing tools and phone systems as if we were in the same office. We can schedule calls and have them integrated with TEAMS too, so it makes our SharePoint facility a great place for collaborating with our Partners globally.

“Pros: The ability to configure the platform as required to meet your business requirements. We use it to handle all inbound calls and can route them to mobile phone, desktops and to voice mail boxes as required. With the seamless integration with Office 365 and with Salesforce we are really well positioned to automate more while providing an excellent experience for our customers.

“Cons: At first, it may appear to be difficult to set-up, but after some trials and finding some of the pitfalls we managed to get it operating how we wanted to. Our business is primarily Mac-based, so it is different from Windows. We had a couple of glitches during the early days when upgrading to the latest MacOS but these did get fixed.”

– Tony R., Capterra, March 2021


3. Ooma

Best low-cost option

Ideal for small businesses without dedicated IT departments, the Ooma Office phone system is ready to go from the box, and can be set up by anyone within 15 minutes.

It also comes with over 35 features to help support your small business, including a virtual receptionist to take calls while your staff are busy, and remote extension dialling – which enables callers to reach your employees’ cell phones while they’re working remotely. While not quite as feature-rich as RingCentral Office, Ooma Office balances that out with a more affordable price tag.

Pros

  • Rated #1 in reliability by readers of PC Magazine
  • Free mobile app enables staff to access your business phone system on the go
  • 30-day free trial
  • Comsource also provides internet, so there’s the option to roll both services into one

Cons

  • Connection via mobile app could be stronger during peak hours
  • Doesn't come with as many features as RingCentral Office

How much does Ooma cost?

Ooma is our favourite low-cost phone system for a reason! It's cheapest package is very affordable at $19.95 per month, though you'll need to pay for the Pro plan if you want additional functionalities like video conferencing, call recording, and a desktop app. Don't fret, though, because Ooma Office Pro isn't likely to break the bank either:

PlanPrice (per user, per month)
Ooma Office$19.95
Ooma Office Pro$24.95

What do Ooma's small business customers say?

“Ooma has quick capability to update hours, which was critical during Covid. It enabled us to easily and quickly communicate with customers through texting. It automated simple processes like telling our store hours to customers. It streamlined checking messages in our email inbox so we didn’t need to set pins or train employees! The list goes on and on!

“We saved hundreds of dollars switching and haven’t had any problems. If we can’t figure something out the customer reps will answer a call, usually in under 30 seconds. The software is intuitive. It is easy to setup, and the app makes texting customers easy and straightforward. Being able to text pictures is also a phenomenal feature! Noteworthy items: 1) great pricing 2) reliable service 3) included texting capabilities 4) included virtual receptionist 5) easy to update hours 6) changes all remote capable.”

– Jordan B., Capterra, December 2021


4. Comsource

Best for very small offices

Comsource is another Australia-based company that more than holds its own against international competitors. A one-stop phone shop, ComSource provides conference, corded, and cordless phones, as well as a mobile app and state of the art VoIP technology. 

As well as this, our research found that customers particularly love ComSource's dedicated account managers, who are on hand to help with any support you need – which is ideal for small offices that are new to VoIP technology!

Pros

  • Swift service – ComSource customers rate the speedy technical support they receive when needed
  • Phone systems come with the option of a powerful softphone app, so you can take calls on-the-go
  • A dedicated customer service agent means you always know the right person to speak to, saving you time spent on hold

Cons

  • Detailed pricing is only available on request
  • Difficult to gauge the extent of the software features available – the company seems more focused on phone hardware

How much does Comsource cost?

Like Nexgen, Comsource asks that you get in touch for a bespoke quote in order to find out how much its phone system will cost for your small business. However, we do know that Comsource's cloud phone system prices start at $20.50 per line, per month.

What do Comsource's small business customers say?

“Smooth moving of phone and NBN service to our new business location. Rick (from Comsource) was fantastic to work with during our phone relocation to our new office. He helped explain the process to us and also liaised with our IT contractor to help fix problems as they came up. Meaning our business was able to continue to run smoothly throughout our move.”

– Liz, Trustpilot, March 2021


5. 8×8

Best for small to medium-sized businesses

8×8 is a well-respected phone systems provider with a broad range of plans available. That’s why it’s a great choice for businesses that might be small now, but anticipate growth in the near future. That's because 8×8 makes it especially easy to upgrade your cloud-based phone system as you grow, while benefiting from brilliant training and setup advice

We also recommend 8×8 to businesses that are on the up because it's a little more expensive than your average small business offering. However, the array of sophisticated features on offer will likely make it a worthwhile investment.

Pros

  • Easy to upgrade as you need
  • Great onboarding process – you and your team don’t need to know anything about VoIP to get started
  • Packed with features, including video meetings and unlimited international calls

Cons

  • Some reviews complain of patchy customer support
  • One of the more expensive providers (but you do get a lot of bang for your buck)

How much does 8×8 cost?

You'll notice that 8×8's more advanced plans are quite expensive. But you will get a lot of bang for your buck with them, including full UC capabilities (video meetings and instant messaging) and unlimited calling to 14+ countries. 8×8's cheapest plan is fairly generous too, with features such as auto attendants and unlimited calls, but you will miss out on some of the more exciting features that other systems provide for less.

PlanPrice per user, per month (billed annually)
X1$24
X2$49
X4$83

What do 8×8's small business customers say?

“We've been with 8×8 for about four years now and they've been fantastic. When we were first with them, there were a couple of minor hiccups, especially with the android app, but for the last two-plus years they've been rock solid and the features they add are useful and work well.

“Pros: The relatively rich chat feature, screen sharing, and ease of transferring a call or meeting from one device to another.

“Cons: It's not as intuitive to copy/paste out of the chat sessions, and I find it difficult to archive a chat, though I may just not know how to do it as it's not something I do regularly.”

– Jim R., Capterra, December 2021

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6. Nextiva

Best for network reliability

Next in line is one of the most reliable small business phone systems on the market: Nextiva. The company's network boasts eight points of presence and carrier-grade data centres, as well as 24/7 network monitoring. In English? You're very unlikely to experience an outage, with Nextiva offering 99.999% uptime. We also love how transparent Nextiva is about its network performance, sending real-time status updates and enabling you to look through its service history.

Nextiva is also feature-heavy, providing online surveys, live chat, and call analytics features as well as the usual functions. Handily, the system is also easy for non-technical small business owners to set up, maintain, and scale.

Pros

  • Experienced zero network outages in 2019
  • Scores 4.2 out of 5 on the review site Capterra
  • Offers a Nextiva app for Android and iOS so you can take calls from your cell phone

Cons

  • Customer service could be more helpful
  • Pricing for growing small businesses can become confusing, as it depends on team size

How much does Nextiva cost?

Nextiva is a really affordable system for small businesses, with the lowest starting price on this list. That said, costs will depend on how big your team is (prices are per month and billed annually):

PlanPrice per user for 1–4 usersPrice per user for 5–19 usersPrice per user for 20–99 users
EssentialFrom $23.95From $21.95From $18.95
ProfessionalFrom $27.95From $25.95From $22.95
EnterpriseFrom $37.95From $35.95From $32.95
UltimateFrom $67.95From $65.95From $57.95

What do Nextiva's small business customers say?

“Nextiva is reliable and fairly simple to use. Customer support is knowledgeable and excellent. I tried switching to a competitor to consolidate our accounts a while back and the different in support was night and day, Nextiva's techs are much better and more accessible.

“I love being able to use the app when we work remotely, this is very popular with my team. It also protects us in case of an outage, even if our physical office phones are down the app is available to make and receive calls without people having to use their personal cell phone numbers. We also love that we can have voicemails automatically sent to our emails.

“The app can be a bit glitchy sometimes. It lacks a feature to put an out of office message on remotely which is inconvenient. But it works for most other things just fine. The billing is also a little convoluted but pricing is fair.”

– Audrey L., G2, January 2022


Next steps

Our reviews prove that Nexgen is a great all-rounder for small businesses, but RingCentral offers the greatest number of useful features. Ooma could be just what you need if you’re on a tight budget (as small businesses so often are!), while Comsource is a great option for those starting up a small office space. 8×8 is a solid option for businesses that are growing past their “small” origins, while Nextiva offers the most reliable network.

The fact of the matter is this: what suits one small business perfectly may not be right for another. Yet, for a busy small business owner, shopping around to seek out the right option is simply too time-intensive to bother with.

That's why we recommend trying our free quote-finding service. Simply tell us about your small business and what you need, and we'll match you up with the best small business phone system suppliers for your team. They'll then be in touch with  no-obligation quotes that have been tailored to you, making it easy to quickly compare the best systems for you.


FAQs

How can phone systems improve my customer service? 

The latest business phone systems can be integrated with CRM (customer relationship management) software, which can help to improve your customers’ experience. The best CRM software will ensure all of your sales leads are effectively managed and followed up, helping to create perfect harmony on both sides of the phone.

Call distribution features keep your customers from waiting too long, ensuring their call is answered quickly and by the right person. Some phone systems can also provide pre-recorded welcome messages that keep your customers informed. 

remote working is part and parcel of working for a small business – fortunately, mobile number extensions enable your employees to answer the phone while they’re away from the office.


What are VoIP telephone systems?

VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) transmits phone calls over the internet rather than the telephone network, making them more reliable, flexible, and customisable than traditional office phones. The best VoIP solutions in Australia include Comsource, 8×8, and RingCentral.


How much does a small business phone system cost?

Most small business phone system suppliers charge a monthly fee, which can range anywhere between $20 and $50 per user, depending on the number of features you’d like to use. You’ll also need to consider additional set up fees, which can reach up to $200 per phone system.

Aimee profile image
Aimee Bradshaw Writer and researcher

Aimee is Expert Market’s resident telephone systems and point of sale go-to. If she’s not writing about business products, you’ll find her daydreaming about dog walking on Dorset beaches.