Give Teams a Voice
24th July 2023
Does your business use Teams? If you have Microsoft 365 then you probably do.
Teams currently has 6.75 million users in the UK alone, and 300 million users globally, so there is a good chance that you are one of them. If you are a Teams user, then you may have thought about using Teams as your telephone system. But is that the right solution for you? Or are you better off sticking with a standalone telephony platform? Whatever you decide to do, Connexis can help you get there.
First of all, if you want to use Teams for Telephony, you will need either the Teams Phone Standard licence, or an E5 licence, per user. As a Microsoft Partner, Connexis can provide this for you to enable voice within your Teams application.
The second thing that you need is a connection to the public telephone network to be able to make calls through Teams. This is where you have several options, depending on what works best for your organisation.
Microsoft Calling Plan –
If you really want to, you can buy a Microsoft Calling Plan directly from Microsoft. This is the least flexible and least value for money option and so is not what we would recommend.
Operator Connect –
This is the new and improved version of Direct Routing, which we have been offering to our customers for some time via our partnership with Gamma. This is a similar solution to Calling Plans, however it is cheaper; you get more inclusive minutes, and there are additional business continuity and fraud management features that are not offered with Calling Plans.
Teams Integration with 8x8, Wildix or Gamma Horizon –
This is the premium option to give you the best of both worlds. A cloud telephony platform is built primarily for voice, whereas Teams Phone System is just an additional feature on what is designed to be a collaboration and meetings platform. It’s no surprise that 8x8, Wildix and Horizon offer a far superior level of service. 8x8 offers 99.999% reliability (known as “Five 9s”), which equates to an average of less than 6 minutes downtime per year; Teams on the other hand is only 99.9% reliable, which sounds good, but equates to an average of 8 hours and 45 minutes of downtime per year. Wildix runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS), the largest cloud service provider in the world, and also the most reliable; since Wildix came to the UK in 2017 there has only been 1 outage.
Both 8x8 and Gamma Horizon have Contact Centre capability, allowing your business to make use of web chat, email, SMS and social media channels through one system. Wildix isn’t a full contact centre, but with their Kite feature you can make use of web chat functionality directly into your telephony platform.
You could of course use these systems and Teams independently of each other, however if you spend a lot of time in Teams it does make sense to be able to make a call using the Teams interface. The Teams integrations offered by all three platforms enable you to do this while still using a superior back-end telephony platform.
Call Connexis today to discuss your Teams telephony journey on 01952 528000, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.