Two co-workers using Microsoft Teams as a phone systemWhen everyone is working remotely and there’s no one in the office, does a phone ringing even make a sound? Well, it depends which phone system you have. When you use Microsoft Teams as a phone system, you can take and make calls anywhere, anytime, and on any device.

In this blog, we look at the benefits of Microsoft Teams Phone and how it can supplement an organization’s current Private Branch Exchange (PBX) phone system—adding everything you need for remote working. What’s more, it might already be included in your Microsoft 365 corporate license.

Introducing Microsoft Teams as a phone system  

At the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we received a lot of calls saying, “Help. How do we do xy, and z now that everyone is working remotely?” And adapting phone systems for a dispersed workforce was among one of the many challenges businesses faced.

In a world with caller-ID, remote workers aren’t so keen to use their home phones or cell numbers for work. People don’t want to hand out personal contact details to customers, vendors, or even to their colleagues. For clients using Microsoft technology, there’s a simple but little-known solution: Microsoft Teams Phone.

With Microsoft Teams Phone, it’s easy to assign licenses for users and set up a calling plan. There’s no need for specialized equipment, no additional wiring; employees can use a microphone, speakers, or a headset. They can also make calls directly from the Teams client, which means it works on any device with Teams installed. It even brings in their contacts from Outlook. What’s not to love?

How to get Microsoft Teams phone system

The conversation around Microsoft telephony often starts with a simple question—what Microsoft license do you pay for? If you are using either the Microsoft 365 E5 or Office 365 E5 licenses, then Microsoft Teams Phone is included. You already have everything you need to get started. The only thing standing in your way is adopting a calling plan. With a click of a button, you can simply add minutes to your license with the calling plan.

If you have a different license, then that’s not much of a problem either—although there will be a cost to using Teams as a phone system. You can also order it a la carte by buying it on a standalone basis or adding it to any existing license, including E3. You will also have to pay for the Microsoft Phone licence (previously called Microsoft Calling).

And starting on January 1, 2022, Microsoft will introduce a new voice bundle called “Teams Phone with Calling Plan,” which will replace the current Microsoft 365 Business Voice and Teams Calling Essentials SKUs.

Need help with Teams Phone licensing? Speak to a Teams expert at MessageOps.

Benefits of using Teams as a phone system 

“Tell me more”, we hear you say. Here’s a more detailed look at some of the main benefits of Microsoft Teams as a phone system.

Integrate with PBX

Importantly, Microsoft Teams Phone can integrate with your existing PBX system. This means you don’t have to tear down the old to bring in the new. You can supplement your existing PBX investment with Microsoft’s cloud-based solution, just for your remote working needs…for now. Later, you might decide to replace the whole thing with Microsoft Teams Phone, but you certainly don’t have to make that commitment now.

Facilitate remote and hybrid work

Microsoft Teams Phone can be used anywhere. Users don’t have to be at their office desks to receive an external business call. It’s perfect for hybrid working, where employees might work at home one day and go into the office the next. Microsoft Teams Phone even allows users to take a call on their desktop and transfer that call onto Teams on their cell phone—if, for example, there is noise in the room they’re in, and they need to continue the call in a quieter room.

Reduce costs

A PBX system is a big investment. As hardware depreciates, it’s a fact of life that your company is going to have to upgrade sooner or later. Whereas investing in Microsoft Teams as a phone system gives companies all the cost benefits of the cloud, and the ability to scale up and down much easier. And your organization won’t have to employ a team to manage its hardware systems—it’s all done on Microsoft’s side with a guaranteed 99.9% uptime. Physical phones can also be purchased for Microsoft Teams for employees to use, but since users can simply plug a headset into their devices, it is certainly not required.


As a cloud-based system, whenever there’s an upgrade, your organization will get it first, automatically. In other words, there’s no wait time or extra cost. Your employees will always have Microsoft’s most cutting-edge phone system technology and features. And if a game-changing new feature is released, it doesn’t mean a whole new system needs to be purchased in order to keep up with the competition—Microsoft will no doubt develop similar features soon. However, Microsoft is known for being a leader in taking technology to the next level, and that is san advantage your organization gets to enjoy as a client.


Remote and hybrid working was not just a solution for the pandemic, and these new ways of working are not going away any time soon. At some point in the future, every business will need to invest in cloud-based phone systems. So, investing in Microsoft Teams as a phone system today can be seen as futureproofing, especially as ongoing updates and feature upgrades come as part of the package. Your company will be investing in a phone solution that will support its future needs, and improve your service today.

Give us a call to get started 

The MessageOps division of Sirius, a CDW company, has the expertise and experience to help organizations supplement their current phone systems with Teams. We’ve worked with public and private sector organizations to design, deploy, and manage cost efficient, secure, and productive cloud environments, and can help you take your phone system to the next level too.

The first step is a conversation with one of our experts, where we can talk more about how using Teams as a phone system will benefit your organization. We also have a Microsoft Teams Phone Readiness Assessment to help you get ready for the integration, or we can also set up a POC for you to test it out yourself.

To learn more about the benefits of Microsoft Teams as a phone system and how we can help you deploy it at your organization, schedule a free consultation or POC with Sirius today.

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