Skip to main content

Voice Services - Cisco Transition to Teams Calls Project

Project Overview

Starting in the spring of 2022, CU Boulder's telephone service will begin a phased transition from Cisco to Microsoft. This new voice service, which will be accessed through Microsoft Teams, integrates seamlessly with a comprehensive suite of Microsoft productivity and collaboration tools including Chat, Calendar, OneDrive, and much more. This transition is another step in leveraging the University of Colorado’s strategic investment in Microsoft solutions.

This move will allow the campus to operate more effectively in an increasingly hybrid work environment by enabling faculty and staff to make phone calls from wherever they are using computers, mobile devices, and in some limited locations, a traditional physical phone. The calling functionality in Teams will be enabled across the campus in phases starting during the spring semester. You will receive emails prior to the transition of your phone number and again once it’s complete. OIT will work in close collaboration with your department’s telecommunication liaison.

As we move through the project, we'll update this page with status updates, resources for learning how to call with teams, as well as a General FAQ and a Telecommunication Liaison FAQ. In the meantime, you can preview how to make calls with Teams in the video below and check out our help documentation for Teams

Project Timeline
Date Activity/description
November 2021 Teams Calls Project Kickoff
December 2021 New phone service announced to campus
December 2021 - May 2022 Design Planning Sessions
January - February 2022 Listening sessions held with members of BFA and Telecommunication Liaisons
December 2021 - March 2022 Engagement activities with campus liaisons which included:
  • Identifying unused physical phones
  • Identifying required physical phones including those that meet physical phone requirements and optional departmental purchased phones
March 2022 Project website published
March 2022 Order placed for Physical Phones 
April 2022 Training videos published
May 2022 - June 2022 More Listening Sessions IT Professionals and IT Communicty of Interest Dates TBD
June 2022 Initial Migrations. Groups include:
  • Users who have opted into the early adoption phase
  • OIT
  • Analog services that require no interaction from departments or end users
June 2022 - August 2022 Phased Migrations for campus users. Migration based on department affiliation. Includes collection and/or replacement of physical phones
May 2022 - September 2022 Online Training Sessions and website support videos
October 2022 Targeted completion date

 

Preview Microsoft Teams Calls

Watch this video for an Introduction to Microsoft Teams features.

 

Using Microsoft Teams Calls

Teams Calls has all the functionality you expect from a traditional desk phone including hold and transfer, call forwarding, voicemail, and blocking unwanted callers. We will continue to create and add to our instructions about this service as Teams Calls rolls out campuswide. Click the links below for video tutorials that will teach you how to make the most of Teams Calls.

 

General FAQ 

Why is OIT transitioning from Cisco VoIP phones to Microsoft Teams?

In order to address the new hybrid and remote work modalities for CU Boulder , our phone service needed to adapt to provide flexible and agile communication functionality in ways that traditional physical phones, like the Cisco VoIP phones, just don’t do well. The convergence of the unified communications landscape coupled with the university’s investment in the Microsoft suite of tools presented the opportunity to address our needs with Microsoft Teams. With the campus voice service hosted on Teams, our phone service will continue to provide traditional phone features, but also allow for seamless integration with Teams features like Chat, Calendar, Files and more. And because you can use Teams on your desktop, laptop or mobile devices, the experience is consistent and easy-to-use no matter if you are on-campus, working remotely or moving between both.

What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is a collaboration application that combines document collaboration, one-on-one and team chat, online meetings, Office 365 and third-party integrations, and much more, all in one tool. Learn more about what is included in Teams. 

When will the transition happen? 

The transition is expected to start in February 2022 and the conversion of phone numbers to Teams will take place incrementally by organizational groups like departments, schools, and colleges.  

Will I still have my phone number? 

Yes, your campus extension will remain the same on Teams. 

When will the calling feature be enabled in Microsoft Teams?

The calling functionality in Teams will be enabled when your phone number is transitioned to Microsoft. You will receive emails prior to the transition and again once it’s complete.

How will my desk phone be collected by OIT? 

OIT will be in contact with departments about the schedule for retrieving existing Cisco phones that are on desks today. 

What will happen to physical phones that are in common locations like classrooms or break rooms?

OIT will replace phones in common locations with new hard phones in places like classrooms, labs and other areas that require a phone for safety reasons.

How does calling someone over Microsoft Teams work? 

Watch this short video to learn how to make and review calls, voicemail and phone settings, and much more. 

Does Microsoft Teams work on a Mac or Linux machine? 

Yes, Teams works on Mac, Linux, and Windows machines. Before downloading on your device, check the hardware requirements for Mac, the hardware requirements for Linux or the hardware requirements for Windows .  

Does Microsoft Teams work on a mobile phone?

Teams apps are available for both iOS and Android. Check the hardware requirements for mobile devices before installing.  

Will the university provide me with a mobile phone? 

It is at a department's discretion whether a mobile phone is provided. Moving voice services to Teams does not change this practice.

Will I still be able to forward calls?
Will I still be able to have a conference call? 

Yes, Teams allows you to add someone to a call and merge calls .  

Will I still have voicemail? 
Will I be able to keep my saved voicemails from my desk phone? 

Yes, to save voicemails, log in with IdentiKey credentials to the Unity Connections WEB inbox while on campus or using VPN, and forward the .wav file to an email address.

I currently have Jabber, will this transition to Microsoft Teams?

Yes, Jabber is a component to the Cisco solution and will be transitioning to Microsoft Teams.

If I call someone using the Microsoft Teams app on my cell phone will the recipient see my personal phone number?

No, the person receiving the call will see your work number as the incoming call number if you use the Teams mobile app to place a call. 

Will there be training videos about using Microsoft Teams for calls? 

Yes, we will have comprehensive training in place which will include videos, documentation, and live web training. Visit OIT’s Teams Service page to get a head start on using Teams.

Is Microsoft Teams accessible to assistive technology like screen readers?

Microsoft Teams can be extraordinarily difficult for users of assistive technology due to inconsistent navigation requirements, multiple regions, unpredictable focus changes, quantity of content, and lack of structural cues. More information about accessibility considerations and recommendations can be found on OIT’s Microsoft Teams Accessibility page .

How will this change impact call centers? 

Call centers will be migrated to a Microsoft Teams compatible application after the first phase of phone migrations, before the end of 2022. OIT will be in direct contact with call center managers as more details are available.

Telecommunication Liaison FAQ

What will you need from me to transition my department? 

OIT's Voice Services team will provide you with a spreadsheet containing your department’s information. Once you get the email from us with the spreadsheet, you will need to verify and return it in a specified timeline with any changes. If you have questions, please contact msvoicequestions@colorado.edu.

What will happen to physical phones that are in common locations like classrooms or break rooms? 

OIT will replace phones in common locations with new hard phones in places like classrooms, labs and other areas that require a phone for safety reasons. 

Can someone who primarily works on-campus request a physical phone instead of having their number moved to Teams? 

The primary objective is to move everyone to Teams soft phones; however, if a department determines a physical phone is required, the department will be able to purchase a phone set. Stay tuned for more details on how that purchasing process will work.

Does this change impact conferencing units? 

Any Cisco conference units that were purchased by the department will be replaced with Teams certified equipment. 

What if I have a need to order a new conference unit?

Liaisons can request a new conference unit through the Voice Data request form.

How will OIT retrieve the physical phones? 

OIT will contact departments about retrieving existing Cisco phones that are on desks today. 

Will the Voice Services request form still exist? 

Yes, the Voice/Data Service Request Form  will remain after this change as will the standard procedures for requesting voice and data services. 

Will I still have to request a phone line for new employees? 

Yes, the standard procedure for requesting voice and data services will remain in place. 

When someone leaves the university, do I need to do anything? 

Yes, please request a disconnect or name change  for the existing directory number. 

Will you be offering training or documentation about using Microsoft Teams calling? 

Yes, we will have comprehensive training in place which will include videos, documentation, and live web training. Visit OIT’s Teams service page  to get a head start on using Teams. 

If I have questions, how can I get support?

You can contact the IT Service Center at 303-735-4357 or oithelp@colorado.edu, or email your questions to msvoicequestions@colorado.edu

Am I still a phone telecommunications liaison after this change? 

Yes, there are no plans to change these roles as part of this transition.