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Why You Should Voice Enable your Microsoft Teams with Direct Routing

October 31, 2019

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microsoft-teams-compliance.compressedCallTower delivers an integrated Office 365 Microsoft Teams experience with global calling plans empowered by a US-based client services team, ensuring a personalized implementation, adoption, training and support strategy. CallTower has been voice enabling Microsoft solutions for years. As a Microsoft Gold Partner providing cloud voice solutions, our monitoring and management services ensure the highest quality user experience. 

Why might an organization make the switch to a Microsoft Teams Direct Routing Calling Plan solution? One reason: Office 365 has broad adoption. Once an enterprise has licensed and deployed O365 for email, instant messaging, meetings, and team collaboration, considering the Teams Phone System for enterprise voice telephony becomes apparent. CallTower’s Direct Routing ensures the ability to leverage CallTower’s preferred rates and unlocks the full potential of a Microsoft Teams Phone System. 

Features of CallTower Direct Routing include:  

  • Stay Connected: Chat, calls and meetings within your team, in private or small group conversations + guest access to extend collaboration. 
  • Coexist with Skype: Increase user flexibility by leveraging capabilities in Teams that are not available in Skype. 
  • Integrated Apps: Expose your team to all applications that are part of the O365 software stack from within Teams. 
  • Change Management: Guidance with deployment, resource planning, technical readiness and adoption to ensure success. 

Microsoft Teams can help you get your team on the same page with group chat, online meetings, calling, and web conferencing. You can collaborate on files with built-in Office 365 apps and add in your favorite Microsoft apps and third-party services to keep the business moving forward.  With Microsoft Teams, you get end-to-end security, administrative control, and compliance—all powered by Office 365. 

Some feature groups are delivered in the context of Office 365 and Teams. The features exist and work but are different from how users have performed these tasks in the past. It’s critical to be aware of these differences and to plan the training, rollout, and adoption support to be sure users see the benefits of the new methods in Teams Phone System. 

For some users, this will be easy - especially for users who are already actively using Microsoft Outlook, Skype for Business or Teams for their online meetings and conferencing, or Skype for Business or Teams for their instant messaging, presence, desktop sharing, peer-to-peer calling, and team collaboration. The features on mobile device are the same as on my desktop PC. This may be a welcome change, if properly introduced and supported. 

For other users, this will be a major change. The main areas to assess for planning, training, and user support are: 

  • On-screen management of basic features such as call, hold, transfer, call forward, and conference. In many cases this will be an improvement, since the users can work with directories, presence, and other tools in familiar ways. 
  • More advanced telephony features such as hunt groups and pickup groups are significantly different. This can help improve workflow and provide more information to the users, but it’s certainly different than what they’ve be used to with a desk phone. 
  • The integrations and APIs are still limited, though those improvements are on the Microsoft Teams Phone System roadmap. Usually, this category isn’t a must-have in a voice telephony RFP, so we don’t see this limitation as a challenge for most organizations. 

Again, Microsoft Team Phone System meets the requirements of an enterprise voice telephony system but does it differently and in the Office 365 context. You’ll need to review the user requirements carefully and then lay out a deployment plan, likely by usage profile, function or workgroup, for adoption that the users will see as a new and better way to work.

Reach out to CallTower for your Microsoft Teams with Direct Routing consultation today (click on the Teams logo):

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