A closer look at the core features and benefits
Direct routing and business integration
It is possible to connect existing telecom providers and numbers to Teams for full-feature calling. Teams can be integrated with traditional on-premise telephony equipment like switchboard controllers. This will help minimise the changes for your primary telephone users and maintain the customer experience.
With Microsoft Phone System you can port your numbers so employees keep existing phone numbers through Direct Routing. That means employees can be found via their Teams profile or through their existing telephone numbers – which is particularly useful for external people making contact outside of the Teams environment.
Flexible call plan options
Microsoft have offered a lot of flexibility here, recognising the different needs of their users. There is the option to utilise existing calling plans, especially useful if you are mid-contract. Alternatively, you can switch to a new call plan via Microsoft Phone System or by integrating an alternative compatible cloud comms provider such as SIPPIO.
For organisations with a Microsoft 365 E5 license (minimum), Teams telephony includes a number of inclusive minutes, a permanent business PSTN number and a direct dial number for conferences, which allows users to dial in for the audio component of an online Teams meeting.
Improved experience and reduced costs
According to Lee Walton, Teams telephony has the potential to provide an enhanced user and customer experience. He commented: “The mobility allows users to be more effective while working remotely by bringing the traditional business number and phone experience to wherever they are. It also allows remote users to engage more effectively with customers by providing, not only the business number to their device, but also providing a modern version of the traditional telephone conference.”
Another clear benefit is that Teams allows organisations to move away from costly telephone infrastructure, including hardware, traditional call plans and telephone conferencing facilities, which can be quite expensive. Users simply use their laptop, PC or mobile phone to hold calls or join conferences – though for desktop users we would recommend using a headset to limit background noise.