Microsoft Teams, the unified communication and collaboration platform that’s integrated with Office 365, is seeing massive adoption rates. In March of this year, there were 44 million daily active users. That number jumped 70% to 75 million daily active users the very next month. And a report in June found that Teams usage growth has surpassed that of Zoom, the original poster child for video conferencing in the work-from-home surge.
New to Teams? Here’s a brief overview
The basic idea of Teams is to combine chat, video meetings, file storage and collaboration, and more, all in one service that’s integrated with the Office 365 productivity suite and includes extensions to integrate with other non-Microsoft products. There are a range of plans available, from free to enterprise, offering businesses of any size an option that’s right for their budget and needs. Of course, the specific features available to you will depend on the plan you select, but the overall range of capabilities includes:
- Meetings and calling—Online audio and video calls, meetings, and events with features such as screen sharing, customized background, and recordings.
- Chat and collaboration—Chat with file attachments, file sharing, collaboration in Office documents, and over 250 integrated apps and services.
- Productivity apps and services—Web and desktop versions of Microsoft applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.), Exchange email hosting, OneDrive file storage and sharing, additional Microsoft 365 services.
- Security and compliance—Data encryption, single sign-on, multi-factor authentication, and advanced auditing and reporting.
- Administration—Tools for user and app management, usage reporting, and configurable user settings and policies.
- Support—Uptime guarantees, phone and web support.
Microsoft Teams makes it easier to collaborate, eliminating the hassle of switching back and forth (and even duplicating efforts) between different apps. And it lets you work from wherever you are, on whichever device you want to use—for the most part.
All Microsoft Teams plans enable you to make online audio and video calls. The phone system enables you to make and receive calls from people external to your business but requires a Microsoft calling plan. But if what if you already have an existing phone system and want to connect it to Teams? Or what if your needs aren’t met with any of the available MS Teams capabilities including the Microsoft calling plans? You can solve these challenges and more with Voice Enabled Teams from BCM One.
First, a few key concepts and terms
Direct routing: The process that allows you to connect a session border controller, via the Microsoft Phone System, to a SIP trunk or on-premise public switched telephone network (PSTN, the traditional phone network) to route incoming and outgoing calls through Microsoft Teams.
SIP Trunking: A method of sending voice and other communications services using an Internet connection instead of a traditional phone line.
Session border controller (SBC): Device to secure and regulate IP communications flows.
Unified communications as a service (UCaaS): Cloud-based platform that delivers a variety of communication and collaboration applications and services.
Voice Enabled Teams from BCM One
Voice Enabled Teams allows you to extend Microsoft Teams to include calling with more flexibility, easier management, and at a lower cost.
With Voice Enabled Teams for SIP, all calls are routed through the Microsoft Phone System using SIP trunks out to the PSTN. We can provide you with the SIP trunk, or we can connect an existing SIP trunk if you already have it. Either way, you’ll have a simple solution that’s easy to manage—and that’s less expensive than traditional Microsoft calling plans.
If you’re an existing BCM One UCaaSone™ customer, or have a BroadSoft-based UCaaS system from a different provider, you can connect to Microsoft Teams with BCM One’s Voice Enabled Teams for UCaaS to get the best of both worlds. If you don’t have UCaaS today, we can also get you started with our UCaaS solution + Microsoft Teams environment.
In all cases, we can connect to your existing Teams licenses. If you don’t yet have Teams, no problem. We can provide those as well.
The BCM One Advantage
BCM One has a long and deep history of delivering voice solutions, including SIP Trunking and UCaaS, to businesses of all sizes. We’re also a Gold Certified Microsoft Partner with a dedicated Microsoft practice, delivering Office 365 licenses and services, Azure deployments, and more. Our expert account team and network engineers will help you every step of the way, planning, designing, deploying, managing, and optimizing your voice-enabled Teams solution. Contact us to learn more.