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3 Questions to Ask Before Adopting Microsoft 365 Business Voice

Paul Hager
03/23/2021
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When businesses had to send employees home to work during the pandemic, many found non-cloud software could be a liability. This is especially true for traditional landline-based phone systems that aren’t easily answered from outside the office.

One of the fastest-growing solutions is cloud-based Microsoft 365 Business Voice, which enables businesses of all sizes to replace their traditional phone system. Business Voice extends the functionality of Microsoft Teams and enables users to make, receive and transfer calls to and from a traditional phone service.

Just like standard phone systems, Business Voice gives you the ability to setup conference calls, toll free numbers and automated phone menu systems. It works with Microsoft Teams, allowing you to turn any computer, phone, or tablet into a phone that uses your Business Voice number. 

If you haven’t looked at Microsoft Teams voice lately, the technology has come a long way, offering new enterprise features rivaling many traditional phone systems.  Here are the three biggest considerations when looking at a Microsoft Business Voice system:

1. Where Do Your People Need Phone Service?

Whether you’re working remotely or travelling, not having access to all your phone’s features and messaging capabilities can be a real pain. If your staff works remotely, Business Voice allows them to respond to calls anytime and anywhere they have access to a device. You can even keep your existing phone numbers by porting them over to Business Voice.

You may have heard that Business Voice is not for large organizations. However, with a Session Border Controller (SBC) and third-party plugins, it is possible to extend the platform to support more than 300 users and add advanced features for large organizations.

2. Will It Play Nice with Your Existing Services?

Before you can know if Microsoft Teams can replace your specific phone system, you must compare your business needs with Teams’ features. If your organization uses Microsoft applications, especially Microsoft Teams, you can unify calling, chat and meetings by adopting this service. But this might not be the case for all businesses, especially if your company relies on proprietary systems.

If your business can adopt Microsoft Teams and Business Voice, you will have a single solution that cannot only make you more productive but save money by consolidating various bills into one. And if you are a Microsoft Teams user already, it offers seamless integration with the communication and collaboration tools you already use every day.

In addition, as a cloud platform, Business Voice is updated with new features continuously at no additional cost. Just like any other cloud-based app, you will have the newest features and fixes as soon as Microsoft releases them, without putting any burden on your IT team.

3. Can You Support VoIP?

Voice over IP (VoIP) or Internet phone services like Business Voice offer access to your phone system from anywhere, on any device. All you need is an internet connection. However, like all VoIP phone solutions, your call quality depends on your Internet connection. If you’re trying to work somewhere that has poor connectivity, you’ll most likely have subpar service.

But if you can make the move, there is no phone system to manage, no equipment in a back room and no need to pay for phone repairs. If your company already uses Microsoft Teams, Business Voice is an add-on to your existing Microsoft 365 subscription. As for equipment, you can use almost any computer headset, camera, microphone, and speaker set that you want, or you can use telephone desk sets that are Microsoft Teams compatible and function just like a regular high-feature desktop phone.

If Microsoft 365 Business Voice seems like a solution for your company, reach out to the managed technology experts at Elevity today. Elevity is a certified Gold Microsoft Partner, in the top 2% of cloud partners in the Midwest and we’d love to help get you started.

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