Teams Calling Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions about Teams Calling and switching to it.


Will I be able to use a dedicated phone on my desk with Teams Calling? 

Yes!  They are not available on initial rollout, but as soon as we finish the technical work they will be.  Note that many people who initially tried a desk phone found that it was just taking up space on their desk and that they preferred the computer-based calling. 


I have a headset. Will I get a new one?  Can I get a headset? 

Existing headsets will not work, but there are many different versions that are available.  You or your department will be able to order them directly from W.B.Mason which has a wide selection to fit your needs and personality.  Supported models and links to purchase can be found on the Microsoft Teams Calling Headsets page.


I currently answer a department phone line in addition to my own.  Will I still be able to do this? 

Yes!  We will need to migrate you, the department line and anyone else who needs to answer it at the same time.  It can be set to ring to just you, or a group of people.  Learn more about configuring Teams Calling in an office environment


I answer calls for another person. Will I still be able to do this? 

Yes!  A person can delegate their phone number to be answered by another person, or for another person to make calls on their behalf.  Each individual involved will need to be on Teams Calling for this to work.  Read more about Call Delegation


Can I forward my calls to other people? 

Yes!  You can forward calls to others in your office or have your calls simultaneously ring multiple people in your office if you are unable to answer the call.  Learn more about Call Forwarding and Also Ring


I have a "sidecar" so that I can set speed dials and see if others in the office are on a call. Will my new phone have a sidecar? 

Yes, you will be able to see presence status and setup speed dials in Teams Calling, but it does not utilize a sidecar.  The presence status in Teams shows far more than if a colleague is on the phone — you can see if they are out of the office, in a meeting, or away from their computer.  Oh, and you can see when they are "available" or even have your device alert you when they are available!  Learn more about setting up Speed Dials and using Presence


Can I really use Teams Calling from everywhere? 

Yes!  At least anywhere you have a Teams device with an Internet connection. 


If I use Teams Calling on my smartphone, do I have to give out my cell phone number? 

Teams Calling adds another number to your phone that you can receive calls on. You do not need to give out your cell phone number unless you want to. 


If I use Teams Calling on my smartphone, does it use my data plan or minutes? 

When your smart phone is connected to Wi-Fi, Teams calling will prefer that Internet connection.  If you are only connected to cellular data (4G/LTE/5G), your data will be used if you take or make Teams calls, however audio-only calls use relatively little data.  Calling minutes are not impacted.


New technology makes me nervous. Is Teams Calling hard to learn? 

If you know how to use your smartphone, Teams Calling will be very natural to you, and if you’re ever used a phone at all, you already know the basics!  Check out the videos on our Getting Started page. 


Will I still receive my voicemails in my email? 

Yes! You will receive an email for each voicemail, or you can use the visual voicemail functionality built into the Teams interface.  Unfortunately, when you switch, you will need to rerecord you voicemail greeting.  Learn more about Voicemail Settings


How do I prevent phone calls after hours or when I do not want to be disturbed? 

Using the presence status, you can set yourself to “Do Not Disturb” so that calls will be sent to your voicemail.  You can also configure "Quiet Times" (including Quiet Hours and Quiet Days) to automatically stop notifying you about calls after you normal working hours, so you do not need to remember to set it yourself! 


I like my Cisco phone. Can I keep it? 

The Cisco phone system will be retired at the end of the Teams Calling project.  Every Bowdoin phone number will be moved to Teams Calling.  However, if you are really attached to the phone, we can probably make arrangements for you to keep it — it just won’t work anymore.


Can I call 9-1-1 from Teams Calling?  How will it know where I am? 

We have partnered with Intrado, a leading provider of 9-1-1 services, and worked tirelessly to ensure the system has the proper information to locate you in an emergency, on or off campus.  By using the network port you are plugged into, or the wireless access point your device is connected to, your location is identified by the building, floor and in many cases the room you are located in and automatically sends the location information to the 9-1-1 dispatcher and Bowdoin’s Security office.  If you are not connected to the campus network when you call, Intrado will intercept the call and connect you to the nearest 9-1-1 call center. 


Where is the ‘iDivert’ button?  I depend on this functionality! 

Rest assured, it is still there!  It now looks like a red hang up button.  If you do not want to answer a call, touch the red circle to send them straight to your voicemail! 


Yikes!  Where did all the buttons on the phone go? 

Teams Calling phones use touch screens much like your smart phone.  Simply touch what you want on the screen! 


I have a student that works for me and will need to use a phone.  How does that work? 

Student employees that need to use a phone will have a phone number assigned to a phone and placed in the area in which they work.  If multiple students work in that position, they will be able to share the same device.  Students will not be able to use Teams Calling on a computer or smart phone due to licensing restrictions.  We are always happy to talk through your individual needs! 


Do I still need to dial a “9” before calling an outside number? 

No!  The new system does away with this archaic custom of the past!  Just dial your number and hit call like on your smartphone. 


Do I need to enter a long-distance billing code? 

No!  Long distance codes, or “forced account codes” (FAC), were removed from the phone system at the beginning of the COVID pandemic.  The new system will continue with the practice of not requiring these codes, instead long-distance usage is monitored and reported.  You can call nationwide by just dialing the 10-digit number! 

Does this mean we can’t use our landlines any more?

"Landlines" (a desk phone that plugs into a wall jack) will continue to be available for faculty or staff who want or need one. Your current Cisco desk phone will continue to work until you're switched to Teams Calling, at which point you'll be able to place and answer calls on any of your devices -- laptop/desktop computer, tablet, smartphone, or Teams-compatible desk phone. However, a landline (or desk phone) is not necessarily required unless one is for your particular job responsibilities.

How will this work with shared numbers, like in the Mail Center and Copy Center?

There are a couple different ways that "shared numbers" can be handled in Teams Calling. IT representatives will consult with you and your group to determine the easiest and most effective method for your particular needs.


Do you have to be on the Teams app to see the visual voicemail or will the visual voicemail notification come through to your email?

Voicemail will continue to be automatically transcribed and delivered to your email, in addition to being available through any device running the Teams app, such as your laptop/desktop, a tablet, your smartphone, or a Teams-compatible desk phone.


Does this mean that our department phone numbers will no longer work?

When you "switch" to Teams Calling, your direct phone line will ring on whichever Teams-compatible devices you choose to utilize, including your laptop/desktop, tablet, smartphone, or Teams desk phone. Some departments have "generic" departmental phone numbers that ring through to phone(s) of one or more staff members, and there are a couple different options for how these can be configured, depending on the specific circumstances and needs of each department.


It says that if we want a physical phone, we will need to request it with IT. What will the procedure be for doing so?

The "Sign Up to Switch" form has a yes/no question to identify whether you need or want a desk phone. In general, requesting a desk phone is a personal preference except in cases where some job functions require the availability of a desk phone. Please note that Teams desk phones are not currently being deployed while we wrap up some of the technical work to enable them to function on our network. As soon as that work is completed, we will start scheduling individuals who need them to switch to Teams Calling.


Is it up to individual departments to purchase headphones for staff?

Yes. Audio devices -- such as headphones, headsets, earbuds, desk speakers, etc. -- will continue to be a departmental decision and expense, dependent on work environment and/or individual needs and preferences. IT has some recommended headsets that the college officially supports. In addition, if you already have college-owned or personal "headphones" that you're fond of, if they work with your Teams-compatible devices there's an excellent chance that they will also work with Teams. Be aware, however, that not all devices work properly with Teams, so we suggest doing some research before making any purchases.


Can we call regular phone numbers that are not teams contacts? Such as colleagues at other institutions?

Yes! Once you've switched to Teams Calling, you can call telephone numbers of any contacts at other institutions or anywhere else. You can either enter their phone number directly and click the "Call" button, or enter them as a contact in your address book then just click the "phone" icon to call them (or any of several other ways to initiate a call in Teams).


What is a Teams desktop phone, exactly?

Teams desktop phones are touch-screen devices that run a version of the Teams application on the phone itself. The picture of the desk phone at is an actual Teams desktop phone: a Poly CCX-600 that will be available to Bowdoin staff who want or need one. Fun fact: they're actually a tablet computer with a handset attached to make them look and feel more like a phone. They also have typical speaker phone functionality and it's possible to connect a headset to them if you prefer to use one.


I do not have storage on my personal smartphone or other device to add applications.  Does this mean in order to make a call from my office, I will have to sit at my computer?

Staff who want or need a Teams desk phone will be able to use that, just as they currently use our Cisco phones. In addition, you also have the option of making (or receiving) calls via Teams Calling from any internet-connected computer with a web browser: you can sign in at a public computer on campus or elsewhere, or on one at your home, if you need to, just by going to


How this will affect our department's 800 phone number? Customers call us every day on our 800 number. How will this work in the future?

Department numbers, such as the Bowdoin Store's 800 line, can be handled in a few different ways, depending on the specific needs of the department. One solution that we expect will be popular is for a department number to ring several Teams desk phones -- either simultaneously or one after the other until one phone is used to answer the call, whichever method makes more sense for your needs. But there are other options and IT representatives are happy to discuss each department's needs to identify the most appropriate solution.


Article ID: 136869
Mon 2/28/22 3:27 PM
Mon 5/23/22 4:58 PM