Are your employees using Microsoft Teams or another chat and collaboration tool as a primary method of communication with others in your organization? Are they also forced to change their focus from their machines to a traditional desk phone in order to reach clients or partners? Do you still have budget dedicated to the maintenance, rental or licensing costs from a Private Branch Exchange (PBX) or Voice over IP (VOIP) Solution while users lose productivity switching between their Teams client and their desk phone to place calls?
With the Microsoft Teams and Phone System in Office 365 you can keep the calling features your organization needs, increase the productivity of your workers and in most cases, reduce the cost of equipment, licensing and the notoriously exorbitant UC support contracts. Sounds pretty good huh?!
Keep reading to get answers to some commonly asked questions that plague organizations when making the decision to use Microsoft Teams as a calling platform.
If I move my primary calling platform to Microsoft Teams, will I lose features or functions I have today?
This is a primary concern with large organizations when thinking about moving their calling platform to Microsoft Teams, and rightly so. While Microsoft Teams may not have all the functionality found in other enterprise calling solutions, it does offer many features today, is constantly being improved upon, and can be integrated with existing PBX systems to provide that functionality until it is offered in Microsoft Teams. Microsoft announced it had reached feature parity with Skype back in July 2018, meaning organizations moving from Skype for Business and Lync server deployments can expect all the features they had available previously. Phone System from Microsoft Office is essentially a cloud-based PBX which can be enabled by licensing one or more users in your organization with the Phone System license, and it offers traditional PBX functions and features such as location-based routing, call park, auto attendants and call queues.
Some organizations which require more complex phone system features such as randomized recordings for agent supervisors to review quality have taken a phased approach to the integration that reduces unnecessary equipment while ensuring required functionality remains. This approach allows for replacing PBX's with Microsoft Teams direct routing at locations or for departments that do not require call center functionality in order to realize cost savings and productivity increases afforded by using Microsoft Teams for applicable locations.
What would having a unified platform for calls, chats and meetings do for my organization?
In 2019, a study done by Forrester Consulting included a survey of various staff inside more than 250 organizations and found that 88% of survey respondents felt ‘having all of our solutions in one place saves time’. In the same study, Forrester assessed the impact of full implementations of Microsoft Teams (chat, collab, meetings and voice) on organizations and potential returns on productivity and investment. The study found that, ‘having all solutions in one place for improved collaboration and information sharing as well a more efficient meetings saved users time (varies based on role): approximately 1.1 to 8.0 hours per user per week.’
Even on the more conservative side of the estimate, saving 1.1 hours a week, translates to saving more than 55 hours a year, per employee! This means that by using Microsoft Teams to provide a single pane of glass experience for all office chat, calling and meetings, users spend much less time trying to collaborate and more time producing for your organization. When coupled with voice capability and public switched telephone network (PSTN) connectivity, it is a powerful combination.
What is my return on investment?
In addition to the cost savings realized by increasing your workers productivity, you likely have a lot of cost saving opportunities moving to calling with Microsoft Teams. Desk phones are fast becoming as antiquated as house phones and takes employees away from their computer and their other collaboration tools. With Microsoft Teams, your end users can have their business phone wherever their laptop or mobile device is; and be sure that wherever they sign in with Microsoft Teams, customers and partners can reach your employees on their work numbers when needed.
Today, it is very common for organizations to be using solutions provided by three or more 3rd party companies to provide the functionality that a full Microsoft Teams implementation offers. The Forrester study mentioned previously also found that post implementation, ‘companies reduce many other communication software and hardware solutions. Companies reported reduced web conferencing, long-distance, mobile phone, and on-premises telephony solutions costs by switching to Microsoft Teams. Over three years, the total savings for the companies are worth $648,727’.
To read the Forrester study cited in this blog for yourself, click the link here.
If you have decided you like the idea of increased productivity and reduced IT costs, click here to see key considerations your organization should make before making the switch to calling with Microsoft Teams!
Contact us for an assessment to see if using Microsoft Teams as a calling platform is right for your organization.
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