Outages do happen. There is no escaping this fact. However, with the increasing reliance on cloud communications for businesses, these cloud solutions need to be resilient against such failures. Microsoft Teams is no exception.
Microsoft have built perhaps one of the most fault resistant cloud communication platforms in the World with multi-geo failover built in. When you make a phone call, Teams will automatically determine your location based on your public IP and connect you to the nearest Teams media point of presence. These are located in three regions currently. Europe, Asia and North America.
In the event of a failure to your primary region, Teams automatically attempts to reconnect via another region based on priority. This brings three levels of resiliency before complete failure occurs.
However, due to the complexities of Microsoft Teams, sometimes failures occur outside the immediate realm of media that cause outages with Phone System.
When these failures occur, business calling continuity is disrupted and are left with closed phone lines until service is restored. Depending on the business services dependent on voice based communication, an outage can cost a business several thousands of Pounds (Dollars) per outage hour.
When your customer service lines are down and your customers cannot contact you, business suffer reputational damage that can sometimes be irreversible. Whilst there are other methods of communication such as; email, web chat and social messaging, voice based customer service is still the dominant and primary method for customer service in 2022.
So, what are your options when Microsoft Teams voice is down?
The options available to you depend on the type of Phone System connection you use, Microsoft Calling Plans, Operator Connect or Direct Routing.
Microsoft Calling Plans
If you use calling plans from Microsoft, you are effectively all-in with Microsoft with a complete ‘hands-off’ service. If Teams is impacted by an outage, then there is nothing you can really do to restore some kind of service. You’ll have to wait until Microsoft restores service.
It can be a similar story if you use Operator Connect. This works largely the same as a Calling Plan but depending on your Operator, you may be able to benefit from redirect services offered by the Operator. If they offer this service, you may be able to login to a portal and configure redirects to mobile numbers for key customer service numbers. This of course is dependent on what BCP services your Operator offers.
With Direct Routing, you’ll maintain access and functionality with your SBC and this gives you the most flexibility and options during an outage to Teams. Your Voice Administrator can logon to the SBC and configure routes for inbound numbers to redirect to mobile or to a back-up phone system you may have connected to the SBC. They may, depending on SBC features be able to even configure it so that this is automatically invoked when the SBC detects a failure with Microsoft Teams.
How Callroute Can Improve Your Business Continuity Options
Callroute removes the complexity and onourous task Voice Admins face during an outage. Logging on to SBCs and updating voice routes to forward to mobile numbers takes time to implement and also time to collect the mobile number information from key stakeholders. While it is technically achievable, the time this takes to complete and undo post fix often contributes to the overall effect of the original outage.
Using Callroute for your Direct Routing solution, you can maintain all the flexibility that Direct Routing offers you in production, but also intelligently failover to other destinations in the event of Microsoft Teams Phone System failure.
Using AzureAD synchronisation, Callroute can read the phone number properties of your users and automatically create back up routes for inbound calls, should their primary Teams number fail to connect.
Zero Touch Failover
As many companies use HR systems that allow users to keep their additional numbers in their contact card up to date e.g. mobile number, the responsibility to ensure that these numbers are kept up to date sit with each individual user and not the IT Admin. Assuming these updates are written to the user’s Active Directory Object and then synchronised to AzureAD, Callroute can detect these changes and automatically keep backup routes up to date.
In the event of a Microsoft Teams voice failure, Callroute will immediately redirect any inbound calls to the user’s backup number based on the numbers found in the user’s contact card in AzureAD.
This means that during a Teams outage, your business will not lose continuity of service and you can continue to provide service capabilities to your customers. When Microsoft restores service, everything will automatically return to normal. No IT Admin overhead or intervention needed and completely seamless.
If you’d like to find out more, please check out our automated failover feature page.