How To Set Alternative Number If Unreachable In Microsoft Teams 

How To Set Alternative Number If Unreachable In Microsoft Teams 

When someone tries to call you, but you can’t answer the phone, you need something to happen. 

That something could be a voicemail or a message stating you can’t be reached right now. 

But the more desirable and more professional option is to have a backup number to send the caller to. 

This could be your mobile number, your PA if you have one, or another department.  

This way, all calls get answered and any important customers, contractors, or colleagues at least receive an answer. 

In this blog post, we’re going to show you how to set an alternative number if you’re unreachable on Microsoft Teams. 

How to configure alternative number if unreachable in Microsoft Teams 

First up, you need to log in to the Teams Admin Center. 

From here, you have four options to choose from: 

Option 1: Auto attendants 

This is useful for call diverts to external (non-Teams) numbers as well as internal transfers. 

  • Create an auto attendant resource account, license for Teams Phone, and then assign it the number the caller will call.  
  • Next, create an auto attendant application and set its primary call treatment option to redirect to the number the caller should be diverted to.  
Configure an auto attendant to Set Alternative Number If Unreachable In Microsoft Teams 
Credit: https://www.streamnetworks.co.uk/how-to-set-up-auto-attendants-and-call-queues-on-microsoft-teams

Choose this method if you want to play a message before redirecting or if you want to apply time of day routing so you can choose different options of call treatment based on the time the person calls.  

Option 2: Unassigned numbers 

This is useful if you want to transfer to internal users in Teams. For example, I have left the business, my number has been unassigned, and the business wants any calls to my number forwarded to my boss. 

You can leave a number unassigned and then create an unassigned number policy specifically for that number to redirect to a user or resource account. 

From there, if redirecting to an auto attendant, you can still do option 1 above (configure an auto attendant) but it isn’t best practice as it’s extra admin overhead. 

Option 3: Private line 

This option isn’t so much a divert, but, as of December 2023, users can now have an extra inbound number routing to them using the Private Line feature.  

This is inbound only and can’t be used as your outbound caller ID. It also can’t be used as part of the user’s personal group call settings. I.e. if they have delegates, those delegates won’t be able to answer calls to the private line. 

Use private line as an alternative to Configure an auto attendant to Set Alternative Number If Unreachable In Microsoft Teams 

Option 4: Unconditional transfer on user settings 

In the Teams client and the Teams Admin Center, you can configure a “forward all calls to (a number or user)”.  

This means that when someone calls the user, it is diverted elsewhere.  

Sometimes, this is needed when the other options aren’t compatible with the end destination system or don’t operate in the intended way for the use case being implemented.  

It isn’t recommended for application use. From a license perspective, it’s expensive compared to other options. Also, from a security point of view, it’s higher risk than the other methods as it requires a user account and password.  

Passwords can potentially get hacked. Call diversions can’t.  

If hacked, there is potential access to internal data and employees for further exploitation. As such, this is not a recommended option to set an alternative number if unreachable in Teams. 

Alternatives to setting an alternative number if unreachable 

If you don’t want to use the alternative number option, you have a few choices: 

  1. Let the phone ring until the caller gives up 
  2. Set up voicemail 

While there’s definitely still a use case for voicemail in the modern world of business communications, setting an alternative number to ring when you’re unavailable is likely the preferred option for many customer-facing scenarios. 

Found this article useful?  

Follow Callroute on LinkedIn for more Teams updates. 

Some Other Articles You Might Like

Intermittent Microsoft Teams calling issues reported globally. This issue appears to be affecting all Microsoft customers worldwide. Microsoft are currently investigating the issue. All Callroute systems are fully operational. More information will be provided as soon as possible.