The Future of Voice: What’s in Store for Enterprises?

Voice calling has long been an integral part of the working environment. But as organizations go digital, many find themselves at a crossroads with traditional voice infrastructure – unsure which way to turn. In this post, we’ll discuss how to create productive future with voice at the core.

Current problems with voice calling

We’re all familiar with the traditional voice calling setup – a private branch exchange (PBX) using physical phone lines to support multiple workers at each site. But as we know, organizations are going through a continual digital transformation. As a result, they’ve invested in countless digital tools for collaboration and communication.

From file sharing and messaging to conferencing and project management, these tools aim to improve productivity in various ways. While that may have been achieved, it was somewhat cancelled out by the fractured workflows organizations experienced when using digital tools alongside legacy phone systems.

Microsoft Teams has become the best fit – unifying different workplace needs to replace the disparate options currently being used. That made it the best option alongside a legacy phone system, minimizing workflow disparity. Unfortunately, it still leaves office staff switching between different systems for calling and other aspects of their work.

But there was an even bigger problem due to the rise in remote and hybrid working. Employees are actually ditching the PBX altogether in favour of their mobile phones. Calls to office numbers don’t get through, making the legacy phone system redundant. Not to mention the risks it poses to privacy and security.

The missing piece in the puzzle

We know what you’re thinking – if only Microsoft Teams offered voice calling too. That would provide the missing piece in the puzzle. Now that’s possible, with Microsoft Teams Phones System.

100% cloud-based, this solution connects Microsoft’s worldwide network to the public switched telephone network (PSTN). That’s the same network that a PBX connects to.

With voice calling in Microsoft Teams, employees can make voice calls from anywhere – at home, in the office or on the go. Crucially, they can do so using secure, work devices.

There’s no disparity between platforms, so users can move from voice calls to video calls, productivity tools and collaboration systems with ease. Even better, organizations can manage everything through teams – including onboarding, administration, monitoring, reporting, and diagnostics.

3 options for a Microsoft Teams Phone System

If you want to make and receive voice calls in Microsoft Teams, there are three options to choose from:

Microsoft Calling Plans

Microsoft Calling Plans are the most obvious solution, given that they’re direct from Microsoft. Unfortunately, they can be quite expensive, and coverage is limited to 33 countries. There’s also a lack of customisation and no integration with existing systems outside of Microsoft Teams.

Direct Routing

Launched by Microsoft in 2018, Direct Routing allows you to use the Microsoft Cloud for other telecom services. As such, you get the best of both worlds – access to the Microsoft Phone System within Teams while taking advantage of your choice of telecom rates. However, this option does take longer to deploy and requires a lot more planning, technical resources and infrastructure.

Operator Connect

Finally, there’s Operator Connect. This provides deeper integration between the calling experience the Microsoft Teams platform. It’s much more flexible and customisable but requires a lot more from the operator to provide adequate service levels and the best user experience.

Enabling voice in Microsoft Teams with Aura Connect

Aura can help your organization adapt to the future of voice with Aura Connect. Based on Operator Connect through a third-party, our sophisticated workaround provides a simplified Teams Phone experience from anywhere, on any device. It’s a truly unified communications system with carrier-grade reliability and all the business-ready features you need.

Want to find out more? Contact us today to talk more about the future of voice for your organization.

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