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At a Microsoft store near you — Great prices on tablets – Big savings: http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msusa/en_US/cat/categoryID.67576700?Icid=Homepage_Header_Tab4_Sale_122113

Microsoft’s Lync Rising as PBX Choice Replacement

The Microsoft® Lync® communications platform is making large gains as the IP PBX favorite, particularly among larger businesses.

Many businesses are taking advantage that their corporate PBX can be entirely replaced by a Microsoft Lync installation.  Lync has been augmented with functions that enable many enterprise voice features. 

Microsoft Lync puts people at the center of communications, connecting in new ways, across the PC, phone and browser. By bringing together presence information, IM, enterprise voice and conferencing facilities, Microsoft Lync delivers a powerful user experience that helps increase productivity by creating efficiency within the working day.   

 

Lync can replace traditional PBX solutions for easier management, lower costs, smoother deployment and greater flexibility.  

 

As part of the Lync integrated communications platform, Enterprise Voice is a robust, enterprise-class Voice over IP (VoIP) solution.    

Some of the key functionality included with Lync Enterprise Voice: 

  • Call Forwarding – Call forwarding settings give flexibility not found in traditional PBX systems. Enterprise Voice users can control exactly what actions occur when an incoming phone call is received, such as ringing for a specified amount of time before being forwarded to an alternative number or to voice mail.
  • Delegation – Users are able to define delegates to answer calls on their behalf.
  • Response Groups – Response Groups manage and direct inbound callers to agents. 
  • Call Park – Answer a call at one endpoint and then put the user on hold, or “park” the call temporarily. The user can then pick up that same call at another location or endpoint.
  • Private Lines – Have a private telephone number hidden from address lists and contacts in addition to the primary telephone number, which is published to users. This additional line can be configured to ring with a different sound to differentiate calls to the private line from the regular number.
  • E911 – Enhanced 911 features are provided in Enterprise Voice so users can dial 911 and have that call connected to an emergency routing service.
  • Remote Access- One of the strongest advantages of Lync Server is that it offers users a completely seamless and consistent user experience regardless of location. Users who travel and use a hotel’s public Wi-Fi have access to the exact same features as users in an office that use the corporate network. This consistent experience is provided without a VPN connection or manual client configuration changes by the user, which allows all features to work from any location.   

To make Lync highly effective certain key elements must be provided by outside vendors.  With additional equipment and system configuration, full PBX functionality, including connection to the outside telephone network is possible.

There are distinct advantages to using the corporate Lync/Exchange infrastructure to act as a PBX.  I’ve listed a few here:

Supports mobility – A Lync PBX system supports a single number to reach workers at their desk and on their phone device.  They can also use this same single number when dialing out from their mobile phone.

Use existing expertise in the IT department – For an organization that already has Microsoft-based infrastructure, the incremental training to operate Lync is favorable compared to the exorbitant training required for PBX maintenance and upkeep.

Most cost effective – rather than paying the hefty cost to forklift a dedicated PBX system onto the premises, existing infrastructure is leveraged to achieve the same results.  Although some Microsoft software licenses may need to be upgraded (for example, the UM version of Exchange is required when using Lync as a PBX replacement), this is typically less expensive than purchasing and deploying an entirely new IP-PBX/PBX solution.

Lync can be configured to support remote workers – Lync already provides presence indication, and helps bring remote workers closer to their colleagues through online collaboration tools such as IM, screen sharing and file transfer.  The addition of voice allows them to bring their desk extension to their home office.

ConQuest Technology Services, a multi-award winning Microsoft Gold-Managed Partner is a premier provider of Lync solutions.  Call today so we can discuss your communication needs and propel your business to work smarter, leaner, more cost effectively while dramatically enhancing collaboration through-in and out of your organization.

Debbie Brandt

Marketing Manager

ConQuest Technology Services

dbrandt@conquest247.com

July 23, 2014

 

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