So, you’ve installed Lync either for yourself or for a customer.  It’s the User Acceptance Stage of the project and they discover that they can no longer do something that they used to be able to do with their old system.  They don’t have the ability to pick up a ringing phone for a colleague in their team.  Suddenly Lync doesn’t look so rosy.  What do you do?

I see this as a shortcoming on Microsoft’s part.  Particularly as I’ve been an Avaya engineer for more than a decade and all they had to do to pick up a ringing phone was dial *30.  It’s a feature they always asked about.  Same with Lync.  I’ve even had the opportunity to replace an Avaya with Lync with enterprise voice.  Believe me, they asked about it.

One option is to just say it isn’t there, deal with it.  Use Team Call group instead.  That won’t go down well. So I have a better option.  

I find that explaining the logic behind leaving the feature out of it works far better.

Here’s the logic.  

Someone calls for you on your DDI because they want to speak to you.  A colleague picks up your phone.  Your colleague is in a different department and has no idea how to help your caller.  Your caller then leaves a message with your colleague who may or may not pass it on.  Now there’s a danger that your caller won’t get that call back.  Your caller has had their time wasted by someone who shouldn’t have answered your phone in the first place, but answered it anyway because they were told to.  Your caller would have been better off leaving you a voicemail.

So rather than allowing your colleague to pick up your phone and waste your callers time, Microsoft has given you the power to decide what happens to your calls when you aren’t there to answer them rather than the administrator.

Microsoft has given you team call group.  The team call group members will be people that you trust to help your callers rather than waste their time.

Microsoft also gives you more options, like simultaneous ring or forward to ring your mobile phone if you aren’t at your desk.  Or just plain voicemail.  The choice is yours.

I’ve done training for dozens of groups at several companies and this explanation always goes down a treat.

I hope this helps.