MS Teams graphic

The RHM Guide to setting up Microsoft Teams as a Phone System

Microsoft Teams and Business Voice only work when your users mailboxes are located in Microsoft 365. They don’t support mailboxes on an on-premise Exchange Server.

Setting up Business Voice without a Calling Plan requires the configuration of Phone System Direct Routing.

Direct Routing enables interoperability between your Microsoft Phone System, which is the core feature of Business Voice; and your third-party Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) provider.

Because Direct Routing requires a deep understanding of Microsoft Phone System, PSTN connectivity, networking, and other technical skills, it is recommended that you use a Microsoft partner or seller such as RHM to set it up.

Additionally, Business Voice without Calling Plan licenses are only available from Microsoft partners and resellers.

As a Microsoft reseller RHM can:

• Obtain the correct Business Voice licenses for your tenant and phone users
• Help you understand the technical requirements for setting up Business Voice
• Coordinate with your telephone provider to make sure your phone numbers are properly set up for use with Business Voice
• Help you set up Business Voice features like Call Queues, Auto Attendant, Voice Mail, and more
Prior to setting up Business Voice without Calling Plan, clients will need to provide the following information:
• How many users, phones, and other devices, will need to make and receive calls to and from external phone numbers
• Details about your existing phone system
• Details about your connection between your phone system and your PSTN provider
• Your Internet connection
• Unique design considerations about your organization such as the need to support call centres, phone system call menus (for example, press 1 for Sales, press 2 for Technical Support), conference rooms, phone kiosks, and so on.
• How many locations your existing phone system supports and how connectivity is set up between them

What licences are required and how much will it cost?

Scenario 1 – You already have Microsoft 365
If you already have Microsoft 365 licenses then you will only need to bolt on Business Voice and RHM’s SIP Trunking service
Microsoft 365 Business Voice (without calling plan) – £7.50 per user per month
RHM Direct Connect SIP Trunk – £7.70 per trunk per month

Scenario 2 – You don’t have Microsoft 365
If you don’t have Microsoft 365 licences then you will need a minimum of Business basic licence as well as the Business Voice and RHM’s SIP Trunking service
Microsoft 365 Business Basic – £3.80 per user per month
Microsoft 365 Business Voice (without calling plan) – £7.50 per user per month
RHM Direct Connect SIP Trunk – £7.70 per trunk per month

A guide to the Microsoft 365 Business licences are on the following link if you want more than the base licence “Business Basic” – https://bit.ly/3qoXeok

RHM Direct Connect SIP Trunks will be a shared resource for all of your users so you only need to rent an amount equal to the total max concurrent calls you would be expecting. So for example if you had 25 users you may only need circa 8 x SIP Trunks.

Call charges;
0.45 pence per minute UK Landline
1 pence per minute UK Mobile

Why not take the calling plan from Microsoft?

You do have the option to take the calling plan from Microsoft as part of your 365 environment. However RHM would recommend you do not do this for the following reasons:

1. It can be expensive
You can opt for the Microsoft 365 Business Voice bolt on licence as shown below. Note this would be an extra £12.00 per user per month. You do get an allocation of minutes with this (1200 UK landline & 600 International), however the out of bundles rates are extremely high.

2. Out of bundle minutes need credits
Any out of bundle call spend will need credits on your Microsoft 365 account. If there are no credits available and you exceed your bundle you will not be unable to make a call.
Credits are added to your Microsoft 365 account via a credit card which is quite clunky and not always appropriate for a business.

3. 100% of your eggs in the Microsoft basket
If you port all of your telephone number ranges to Microsoft then you will have all of your eggs in one basket.

If Microsoft 365 platform has an outage then all of your incoming and outbound calls will stop.
If you opt for Direct Routing with RHM then you will have in-built resilience.

RHM can build a DR plan for you with calls routing to an alternative destination upon failure such as mobiles or landlines.

Need more information or advice? Call us now 0345 136 60 60

© rhm telecommunications 2021