First in a 5-part series

Part I: Why and When to Transition to Microsoft Teams

The Unified Communications and Collaboration (UC&C) space is going through one of its greatest technological evolutions ever. IT Leaders are feeling intense pressure to adapt the right technology and solutions that meet the needs of their workforce. In this new digital- and software-driven world, people need access to technology solutions. These must be solutions that

  • are intelligent.
  • adapt to their work habits and business processes.
  • come with enterprise-grade cloud computing capabilities.

For all these requirements, I believe that Microsoft Teams is the right fit.

I have been in the business of communication and collaboration for over 20 years. That includes about 15 years of experience working with UC & IT Messaging technologies, primarily working with Microsoft LCS, OCS, Lync, Skype and now Teams. During the last year or so at Poly, my team and I have been working with organizations across the globe that are making the final decision on fully or partially moving to Microsoft Teams. Not every company goes all-in right away. But through our involvement as a trusted adviser and valued partner, we provide them a smooth path. We boost their confidence by answering the most common questions we receive:

  • Why and when should we transition to Microsoft Teams?
  • Is my company’s network ready?
  • What are the core features, capabilities and people-oriented ROI that can be achieved?
  • What should I expect around end-user experiences, interoperability, and Teams device options?
  • What about Governance and Security?
  • What about Adoption and Change Management, and Managed Services?

In this first installment of a five-part series, I will focus my thoughts on the first question: Why and when should we transition to Microsoft Teams? In subsequent posts, we’ll share thoughts on the other areas.

Why and When to Transition to Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams was released in early 2017 and continues to grow in its adoption and scale. This truly game-changing platform and service makes the collaboration experiences for end-users better by providing them more efficient ways of working. Within seconds, end-users can connect to a meeting from a boardroom, conference room, classroom, coffee shop or even from a boat (dramatic). And they can do this from just about any device, smartphone, web browser or conference room system. The Teams desktop client or web browser has convenient integration with Office Suite applications. And that’s in addition to improved ecosystem interoperability platforms like Polycom RealConnect Service, and with software or hardware devices and endpoints from Poly and others. Lastly, IT administrators can manage everyone from a single dashboard and can implement multiple levels of policies across users. All of this is done right out of the box. Microsoft Teams is truly “The hub for Teamwork” per Microsoft, and a growing UCaaS platform that businesses rely on.

To answer the customers’ Why? questions, I share with them the personal and productivity experiences I’ve had with Microsoft Teams. I talk and walk them through examples of how I use it on day-to-day basis as my central communication tool for just about everything. That includes private/group chat, calling, video meetings and file distribution and storage. Our Global Services Teams within Poly spend quite a bit of time collaborating and communicating internally and externally with customers and partners within Microsoft Teams desktop or mobile client. Joining meetings is so ridiculously easy compared to traditional calling methods and applications – literally one click and you are in any internal or external meeting. It truly empowers any workforce or users, within any department or industry, to achieve more.

When is the right time?

Deciding when to make the move and at what pace will vary from customer to customer and environment to environment.

For most, it will require at least a basic level of discovery questions to better understand:

  1. Where would you like to be in the future with great technology?
  2. What technology and collaboration services pre-exist within your current environment?
  3. What are the user types and type of usage of your existing technology today?

After these three baselines are answered, we usually know where next to take the conversation.

My team and I have helped organizations of all sizes migrate to Microsoft Teams and at the pace and timeline the customer prefers. We help to develop a personalized and detailed roadmap that plans out their journey. We consider what they have today (e.g., a legacy platform and use cases) and their current and future requirements (e.g., business, technical and functional), as well as the number of users, sites/locations, meeting rooms and endpoint/device needs. We also present our vision to their executives and decision makers on the quantitative and qualitative value that Microsoft Teams will bring to their organization.

Help Needed?

Poly is a pioneer in the UC space and a known technology leader in the communications industry. Customers come to us every day to help them envision and design an actionable roadmap for Microsoft Teams. For such customer requests, our Poly Professional Services can conduct what Microsoft and Poly calls a Teamwork Assessment engagement. This Envisioning and Design type engagement helps customers align their business needs with the capabilities of Microsoft Teams. It demonstrates how Microsoft Teams can solve teamwork challenges they have. And it provides a holistic view and design of their future state with Microsoft Teams.

Poly also offers a host of relevant Professional Services like Migration, Adoption, Customer Support and Managed Services for Microsoft Teams. Poly Managed Service for Teams – Poly’s hosted service aims to accelerate Teams adoption in enterprises worldwide with a range of Managed Services to support enterprises on their entire Teams journey. Poly Services PortfolioPoly has extensive experience in making sure that your UC solutions continues to perform as you expect it to and deliver the business outcomes that you need. Think of Poly Services as your one-stop place to find expert support for any or all of the components in your solution.

So whether you have already embarked on or are planning on starting your move to Microsoft Teams, Poly has the Microsoft experts and experience available that can help you accelerate your Microsoft Teams journey.

For more information about Poly Services for Microsoft Solutions, TeamMicrosoft@poly.com or visit https://www.polycom.com/collaboration-solutions/microsoft-unified-communications/microsoft-teams.html.