A Business Communication System Customized for You

Our leadership in Hosted services since 2003 provides you with the experience to achieve your goals in communications. The breadth in the types of companies we serve means we’ve created the solutions you may also be seeking including Contact Center and integration with Microsoft Teams. Multi-state companies utilize our network of dedicated fiber providers to achieve integrated voice and data services.

Our Services

Consolidate Your Current Communication Tools to One Solution Suite and Replace Your Business Phone with the Cloud

RazorLine continually sees the incredible evolution of Unified Communication advancements through Microsoft Teams. The need for remote access to a company’s communication system has been made obvious, especially recently. The revolutionary aspect is Teams’ ability to replace your entire business phone system with a managed cloud service. Combining our Direct Routing to the Teams network and its voice capability, called Phone System, enables business telephony capabilities from within Office 365. This feature enables employees to be much more productive for a much lower expense.

You may already be aware that anyone in your organization using Microsoft Teams can make calls to any other team member using a Windows PC, Apple Mac/iPhone/iPad, or Google Android device via the Microsoft Teams app. Without a connection to ‘the outside world’ otherwise known as the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network), these VoIP calls can only be made within the company’s network. Adding a Phone System license and the Team8 service will give you access to outside calls.

Most businesses use PBX hardware installed at an office location or use a trusted Hosted VoIP company like RazorLine to be connected to the PSTN. Even with apps for cellphones and laptops with VoIP systems, using Teams and a separate phone system is confusing and expensive. Team8 can simplify, and consolidate, your operations.

Business Need and Impact

Adopting Teams as your Unified Communications system will increase user communications productivity by allowing every user to utilize the same tools for chat, video, team collaboration, meetings, video conferencing, and voice communications. The process to communicate across multiple channels will be the same whether the user is at their desk, remote, or in a conference room.

RazorLine recognized that many companies were installing Teams to take advantage of the improvements to all manner of communications. While Teams calling looks a little different if you choose to use a mobile phone app or an app on your computer, you can use a traditional phone as well! RazorLine is used to change and upgrades and has dealt with change since we first introduced Hosted VoIP in 2003. The increase in options and capabilities are well worth the effort. Many of the same features used in a traditional system are available from Microsoft, and with professional, experienced help from RazorLine, it is very well-suited for a corporate setting.

As mentioned above, there are a wide array of devices to use as your ‘phone’. There are regular desk phones as well as an app for your other devices. Both Polycom and Yealink provide Teams certified phones and two are shown below. Apps are shown on the next page.

Poly CCX 500

Yealink MP58

Example of a Teams call on the desktop app

How to Accomplish PSTN Access Component Within Teams

Teams is a pure cloud service and there are no on-premise Teams servers. Most of the Voice configurations must be performed in the O365 tenant using PowerShell. A Phone System license from Microsoft is required and Microsoft 365 users can add that to their cloud-based system. Other licenses for Automated Attendants, Audio Conferencing, and Call Queueing are available.

Current features include:

Phone System feature Description
Cloud auto attendants Lets you create a menu system that enables external and internal callers to locate and place or transfer calls to company users or departments in your organization.
Note that users do not need to be voice enabled to receive calls from the auto attendant dial by name, dial by number directory search. Users do need to be voice enabled to receive calls from the auto attendant menu options.
Cloud call queues Lets you configure how call queues are managed for your organization: for example, set up greetings and music on hold, search for the next available call agent to handle the call, and so on.
Note that users do need to be voice enabled to receive calls from a call queue.
Music on hold Plays default music defined by the service or custom music uploaded by the tenant administrator when an external call from the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) is placed on hold. This feature works for one-to-one PSTN-to-Teams calls in addition to calls made to a call queue. This feature provides on-hold notification parity with other platforms.
Call answer/initiate (by name and number) Lets users answer inbound calls with a touch, and place outbound calls either by dialing the full phone number or by clicking a name in the client.
Common Area Phones A common area phone is typically placed in an area like a lobby or conference room making it available to multiple people. Common area phones are set up as devices rather than users, and can automatically sign into a network.
Call forwarding options and simultaneous ring Lets users set up forwarding rules so calls can go with them anywhere, or calls can be forwarded to colleagues or to voicemail.
Group call pickup and forward to group Lets users share incoming calls with colleagues so that the colleagues can answer calls that occur while the user is unavailable. Less disruptive to recipients than other forms of call sharing (such as call forwarding or simultaneous ringing) because users can configure how they want to be notified of an incoming shared call.
Transfer a call and consultative transfer Lets users transfers calls to another person. Or, if they need to leave their office but want to continue the conversation, they can transfer the calls from their PC or IP phone to their cell phone.
Note that users do not need to be voice enabled to receive transferred calls from another user.
Transfer to voicemail mid call* Lets users transfer to voicemail during a call.
Call park and retrieve Lets users place a call on hold in the Teams service in the cloud. When a call is parked, the service generates a unique code for call retrieval. The user who parked the call or someone else can then use that code and a supported app or device to retrieve the call.
Call phone number from search Lets users place a call from the search box by using the /call command and specifying a name or a number.
Caller ID Calls from inside the company display a detailed caller ID that pulls information from the corporate directory, showing picture ID and job title instead of just a phone number. For calls from external phone numbers, the caller ID as provided by the phone service provider is displayed.
Device switching Lets users play a call or meeting on another HID device that is connected to Teams; for example, switching from their PC speakers to a headset.
Presence-based call routing Controls inbound communications with presence, enabling the user to block all incoming communication except from those specifically indicated.
Integrated dial pad Lets users dial by name or by number anywhere in the search bar and in the dial pad, speeding up the process of making outbound calls.
Federated calling Lets users securely connect, communicate, and collaborate with users in federated tenants.
Make and receive a video call If the user’s account is enabled for video calls, the user can make face-to-face video calls with their contacts. All they need is a camera, their computer’s speakers and microphone. Users can also use a headset if their computer doesn’t have a built-in audio device.
Cloud Voicemail When a user receives a voicemail, it is delivered to their Exchange mailbox as an email with the voicemail message as an attachment. Users can listen to their messages on their certified desktop phone, and on all Teams or Skype for Business applications. Support for voicemail transcription has been added as of March 2017 and is enabled by default for all organizations and users.
Note that users do not need a Phone System license, nor do they need to be voice enabled to use Cloud Voicemail features.
Cloud Voicemail user settings Lets users configure their client settings for voicemail greetings, call answering rules, and greeting language, including out-of-office greetings.
Note that users do not need a Phone System license, nor do they need to be voice enabled to use Cloud Voicemail features.
Secondary ringer Users with multiple speaker devices connected to their PC can choose to set a secondary device to ring in addition to their default speaker. For example, a user with a headset connected to the PC and desk speakers can choose to have both headset and desk speakers ring when a call comes in so that they don’t miss a call.
Distinctive ring alerts (Teams only) Lets users choose separate ringtones for normal calls, forwarded calls, and delegated calls so they can distinguish the type of call.
Shared Line Appearance Lets users share their phone line so that another user can make and receive calls on their behalf.
Busy on Busy (Teams only) A calling policy that lets you configure how incoming calls are handled when a user is:

  • in a call
  • in a conference
  • has a call placed on hold.

The caller will receive one of the following responses:

  • hear a busy signal when the callee is on the phone
  • will be routed accordingly to the user’s unanswered settings. One option lets the caller leave a voicemail for the user who is already on a call.

The callee gets a missed call notification but isn’t able to answer incoming calls. This feature is disabled by default, but can be turned on by the tenant admin.

Call blocking Lets users add (PSTN) phone numbers to a blocked list so that the next call from that number is blocked from ringing the user.

How to Get Started

You may think changing out a phone system isn’t worth the effort, but like many other endeavors, you’ll be glad you took it on. You simply add a Phone System License for every user. If you have an E5 you’re all set as far as the Microsoft side goes as it includes the Phone System License. Pretty easy so far?

On the RazorLine side, you’ll have to share your current phone bills so we can start the process to discover all the phone numbers you have and how they’re used. We’ll use that information to port the numbers during the process to change your phone system.

We work with you to plan how you want calls answered and routed, and we do all the work to achieve that plan. If you want to change it once you go live, we’ll do that as many times as you want. There is some work to do in coordination with your IT department or MSP to route calls through the Teams cloud. We’ll help with that process and make sure the programming is complete.

You may incur a one-time charge for SBC access and licensing, as well as equipment you may want to use such as phones, headsets, and other devices for special needs. We support and provide both Poly CCX and Yealink phones. There are many models of headsets people use if you choose to use the app on one or more of your devices. Poly has a huge selection at various price-points. We will provide a quote based on your needs.

We’ve always charged a per-user amount for our Hosted VoIP service and we’re continuing that model. Any Teams user can access the PSTN for local and domestic long-distance calls, as well as all of our technical people for just $8 per month or almost 1/3 less that a Microsoft Calling Plan. We are happy to quote for any VoIP or analog users separately that may be part of the overall design.

As always, there is no charge to try it first.

Contact:

Gene R Dry
Managing Partner
504.274.1717
gdry@razorlinecloud.com
www.razorline.com

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