In 2019 the University approved a strategic recommendation to adopt Microsoft Teams as its preferred phone system. A significant driver for this was the ability for staff to work in a hybrid way, from any device, in any location. In addition, we had a very old phone system (commissioned in 1985), which became end of support in 2016 and was no longer fit for purpose.
Over the past year, in coordination with colleagues across all departments, all University extension numbers have been reviewed to determine if they should be upgraded or disconnected.
The DDaT Teams Calling Project team would like to thank everyone who contributed to the project. We are particularly grateful to Keith Zimmerman, our project sponsor for his vision and support of the project. In addition, the team gives special thanks to the internal contributors within departments who used the opportunity to consider their ways of working and how current technology might help them. They reviewed large amounts of out-of-date data to confirm their future needs.
Words from Keith Zimmerman, Project Sponsor
"It is a major accomplishment for the University to complete the Campus phones are changing project, which was of enormous scale and complexity. The functionality of Teams Calling has enabled us to work flexibly, and more efficiently and has strengthened our collaboration. Thank you to everyone involved in making this possible". Mr Keith Zimmerman, Chief Operating Officer.
How the project helped departments to manage their calls more effectively
The review of extension numbers revealed that many departments were paying for services they weren't using. Additional cost-saving opportunities were identified by departments who decided to maximise their use of Teams for internal calls (free at the point of use), realising that not everyone needs to make external calls (landlines and mobiles) through the Teams Calling integrated dial pad. The identification of 700 extension numbers that were no longer required saved £70,000 per year on line-rental costs across all departments.
Other identified improvements :
- 3,500 phone extensions were on outdated, unsupported, and costly legacy systems. With the exception of 250 extensions, all of them have now been migrated, reducing maintenance costs, risks, and power consumption significantly.
- 60 Auto Attendant queues have been created, which help control the flow of calls to a central contact number. Callers can select from menu options to connect with the right person or department. They can be directed to specific people, to a call queue, or to voicemail. Call routing options can be specified for business hours, out-of-hours, and holidays.
- Moving to Teams Calling and Auto Attendant functionality has reduced the cost of Clearing by ~£10,000/year.
Top benefits of Calls within Teams
The following benefits apply to all Teams calls, regardless of whether you have the Teams Calling integrated dial pad:
- Make and receive calls from anywhere in the world, on any device (desktop, laptop, smartphone, or tablet) running Teams.
- Quickly manage your ‘Call answering rules’ and configure your voicemail within one place.
- Schedule your availability: set focus/quiet times and out-of-office schedules, so your phone does not ring when you are not available.
- Use your ‘presence statuses' to let colleagues know when you are contactable.
- Add delegates to make and receive calls on your behalf.
Examples of colleagues maximising Teams Calling capabilities
Across the University, colleagues are optimising their productivity and effectiveness through Teams Calling. We will be sharing some of these experiences soon through focused case studies, which we will share on the University homepage.
If you would like to share your positive experience of using functionality within Teams to manage your calls, we'd love to hear from you. Please email DigitalEngagementandAdoption@bath.ac.uk
Further guidance on managing your calls
You can find out more by visiting the Managing your calls guidance on the University of Bath – Learning Pathways site.
Help and support with Telephone Services
Visit the University Telephone Service webpage for help with:
- Reporting a phone fault.
- Service costs.
- New requests or changes.