Ah, the single pane of glass dream. It’s something telecoms vendors have been advertising as the holy grail for years. After all, unified communications is supposed to be unified, right?
Well, when it comes to management and administration, not so much. IT managers and Microsoft Teams admins spend ages in the Teams Admin Center (TAC) and hours on Entra (formerly Azure AD). Oh, and don’t forget all the back-end tweaks on Exchange that filter through to Teams.
Reality is that the single pane of glass is a pipedream. However, we’re delighted to share that you can now put all your Microsoft Teams management into a single pane of glass.
How do I get to Microsoft Teams management?
The current state of play is you have several windows and portals to navigate, remember what went where, copy, paste, and duplicate information.
You’re going to spend a lot of time in the TAC. You’re going to spend a lot of time in spreadsheets (that may or may not be up to date). You’re going to spend a lot of time running scripts the last IT person created.
The most common result?
Manual errors that lead to repeated tasks and wasted time, effort, and ultimately, money.
Before we get started on our single pane of glass, we must caveat that this blog post isn’t designed to bash the TAC. Quite the opposite. The TAC exists for a very good reason and is helpful to those who know their way around and have the dedicated time to learn all its intricacies.
If that doesn’t sound like you, good news. It’s just what Orto for Teams aims to remedy. It’s a single pane of glass portal for user management (likes moves, adds, and changes, etc.)
In some cases, the TAC isn’t enough either. You must unlock some functionality with the Microsoft Teams Premium license. In smaller businesses, the cost of $10 per user per month, on top of an existing Teams license isn’t justifiable.
But what if we told you there was a way to simplify Microsoft Teams management for as little as $0.27 per user per month?
Put in perspective, if you have 2,000 Teams users, that’s $540 instead of $20,000.
Got your attention?
Read on to see exactly what Orto can do for your business.
Orto: the single pane of glass for Microsoft Teams management
When a new starter joins your business, what does the current process look like?
HR sends a request with a name and a job title. Not much else, right?
You’re tasked with granting access to “everything they’ll need on day one”. Only, nobody ever specifies what that “everything” is. So, you’re left to guess what each new starter needs based on memory from similar new starters, checking what permissions and policies other people in that department have, and some gut feel.
The end result? Your new user gets access to Teams, some channels, they might get a phone number, and they can do basic-level Teams functions. You’ve catered for day one.
But, on day two, and again on day 100, you get urgent requests for access to things nobody has mentioned on any support request. What these things can be is trivial. It could be something like call recording, voicemail, or music on hold.
What happens next is you scramble around adding piecemeal licenses and policies to try and appease the incoming flood of support tickets.
It’s unsystematic. It’s manual. Its time-consuming. It’s prone to manual errors.
The better approach to Microsoft Teams management
Rather than scrambling around, you can create user personas that provide everything that new starter will need.
For example, if they join the People Services team and are based in the New York office, their user persona will look something like the below image.
So, when your next ticket arrives and Ella needs “everything an HR Manager in the UK must have”, it’s already templated. You configure Ella on Entra and Orto automatically create a user profile based on what her team persona dictates.
What’s that? Ella needs to be part of a specific Teams call queue too? No problem. Our single pane of glass portal allows you to do that without needing to revisit other portals or copy information from spreadsheets or run manual scripts.
You can select available call queues from a drop-down menu. The available call queues appear based on the Teams persona you originally configured. So HR folks will only have HR queues available. No more doom-scrolling to find the right queue name.
Dealing with ongoing Microsoft Teams user management
Time passes and Ella isn’t suited to HR. Instead, she’s joining the Finance team. Or maybe she’s been promoted. Either way, it means you must now strip all the previous access configured, remove her from the HR call queues and add her to all the new sales ones (there’s a lot!).
That’s what you’d have to do if you were using the TAC. Or maybe you would do it on the deep, dark, back-end, where nobody would dream of going. The fact is, there is a better way.
With Orto, all you need to do is change the persona. A simple change from HR to Finance is all you need to do.
Making changes en masse? You can migrate a bunch of users from one persona to another as well. For example, if your sales academy all qualified to become sales executives, you can bump their Teams access up in a single click.
Looking after moves, adds, and changes
Sometimes, the smallest changes take up the most time. Think about the number of additional policies and licenses you get asked to make per year. Enough to cause you to open up the TAC and reference multiple spreadsheets, but not enough to employ someone to look after the TAC as a full-time job. Finding the balance between the two is…less than perfect, shall we say?
Every time you have to start a task that should, in theory, take a few minutes, you must relearn and remember how to make that change.
And what happens when you make even the smallest mistake? When you hit save, it could trigger a world of pain. That’s not to say our single pane of glass is foolproof. You still need to hit the right buttons 😊 But we’re confident we’ve made everything as simple as possible. There’s virtually no learning experience needed. Orto is designed for you to hit the ground running immediately. Everything you need is a few clicks away and all your data gets pulled through from Entra automatically.
Whether you need to change a policy, a phone number, a call queue assignment, or delete a user completed (on purpose, this time 👀), Orto takes care of it all.
How does Orto work?
When you connect your Microsoft Teams tenant to Orto, you get access to our single pane of glass portal for all your management changes.
You get access to all your users and numbers and can make all the changes you desire, without firing up PowerShell or making one-by-one changes in the TAC.
Sure, you can still access the TAC if you wish to, but without needing to subscribe to Teams Premium, you have all the functionality of policy packages (and more) when you connect to Orto.
Once you’re connected and are having fun (well, more fun than constant manual changes), you can even start experiencing the benefits of Microsoft Teams automated provisioning.
With the creation of user personas, you no longer need to spend time toing and froing when new users discover they need extra access. Instead, they automatically get assigned their Teams policies and access when you configure their profile in Entra (Azure AD).
Are you responsible for Teams provisioning? We need to talk.
Automating your Microsoft Teams provisioning tasks is simple when you use Orto to do all the heavy lifting.
As long as your data is accurate, you can feed it into Orto and start provisioning users automatically.
Not ready for automation? That’s okay too. You can use Orto for number and user management changes as a single pane of glass, so you don’t need to spend time chasing different portals and scripts.
Sounds like something you need in your life? Click here to learn more about Orto.