1. Junction Networks in Newton, Pa.
Rising gas prices has caused more than a few employees to work from home at least part of the week to cut down on commuting expenses. That's where Junction Networks comes in.

The Newton, Pa.-based company provides Voice over Internet Protocol platforms to small and medium-sized businesses. One of the more well-known names in the VoIP space is Vonage ( VG), which provides telephony services primarily to residential customers, but also to small businesses.

"We've just seen a big increase in people looking to work from home," says Mike Oeth, CEO of Junction Networks. "Gas prices are definitely a part of it, prices in childcare and day care, after-school care -- those prices have gone up."

Junction Networks' primary product is onSIP, a subscription-based service that can host a small business' entire communications platform. Employees can make outbound calls through their desk phone, home phone or mobile phone and the outgoing number will be the same business number. Incoming calls get routed to one number, but to a phone the owner selects.

The system "brings all these sophisticated phone features and makes them available to small and medium-sized businesses, allows them to look larger and be just as effective if they're in one office or spread out all over the place," Oeth says.

Implementing a VoIP communications system allows small businesses to be more flexible in whom they hire, Oeth says.

As of May 2011, the company's revenue had doubled on both a year-to-date and month-over-month basis compared with last year, he notes. The company was expected to double the number of active phones by the end of 2011 to 20,000 from about 11,000 currently," Oeth said.

"The only thing the small business needs is a phone and an Internet connection. It can sit on a desk, be an app on an iPhone or some software on their laptop," Oeth says. "There is no maintenance. There is no extra IT required. It also allows them to work from home just as easily and just as efficiently as if they were in the office."

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