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Get ready for a new Microsoft Teams experience – our Unified Communications platform

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Employees interested in learning more about Microsoft Teams will have the opportunity to participate in a series of how-to workshops starting this summer.

The move to Microsoft Teams is part of the Unified Communications (UC) project, which aims to standardize and integrate services such as instant messaging, voice and video calling, virtual meetings and classrooms, team collaboration channels, content sharing and more. Microsoft Teams will become the primary collaboration tool for the college, replacing Skype for Business (Lync) as the go-to tool for instant messaging, voice and video calling and meetings.

With the college set to begin working on a new Flexible Workspace Strategy later this year, the Unified Communications project will help ensure employees have access to the technology, tools and resources they need to succeed in more flexible working and teaching environments. More details on the Flexible Workspace project will be available soon.

Microsoft Teams training to be available starting this summer.

Starting this summer, general “How to use Microsoft Teams” workshops will be available to all employees. The training will include entry-level workshops for those with little to no experience with Microsoft Teams and more advanced training for more experienced users.

Training will be offered in a variety of formats, including virtual and in-person. More details on the training will be available soon.   

Unified Communications Pilot

The Enterprise Systems Strategy team is looking for teams from across the college to participate in the Unified Communications pilot this summer. The pilot will test new functionalities in Microsoft Teams, collect feedback on the documentation and training required and improve the overall user experience before a college-wide rollout begins later this year.

Departments or teams interested in joining can contact Jeffrey Silva by email jeffrey.silva@mohawkcollege.ca for more information. 

All Employees to receive 10-digit, direct phone numbers as part of the switch to Microsoft Teams.

Employees with a 4-digit extension will be assigned a new direct 10-digit phone line. All internal and external calls will be connected through Microsoft Teams as individuals are onboarded into the project. Employees who already have a 10-digit phone number will have the option to keep their current number. Service area extensions will not be impacted at this time.

For more information about the Unified Communications project, visit: Enterprise Systems Strategy Update - March 2023.

Have questions? Below are answers to some commonly asked questions.

What are the benefits of using Microsoft Teams as a Unified Communications Platform?

Our entire college community will be using the same platform for communicating via instant messaging, voice and video calling, virtual meetings and classrooms, team collaboration, content sharing and more.

New features within Microsoft Teams will become available, including integration with your Outlook calendar, the ability to book Teams meetings directly from the platform, access to voicemail, and various productivity apps.

Employees will also benefit from the introduction of a direct dial 10-digit phone number for anyone with an existing college number.

What will happen to Skype?

Skype for Business (Lync) was discontinued by Microsoft in 2021. It is no longer a supported platform and is not receiving support for issues or upgrades. At Mohawk, Skype is primarily used for instant messaging and virtual meetings. Both features are available with a better experience through Teams.

Will I still be able to use Zoom?

Zoom is not affected at this time. Microsoft Teams will eventually be the preferred tool for virtual meetings, classrooms, and overall collaboration; however, there may be some instances where Zoom remains the tool of choice. This will be decided on a case-by-case basis in the future.

Will I need a new desk phone?

All calls will be routed through your computer and mobile devices using Microsoft Teams. After the change to Microsoft Teams, the current Skype for Business enabled desk phones will no longer function. Most employees will not require or want a desk phone with the new system, but where it is required the phone will be replaced with a Teams-certified version.









Be an Insider

This project is supported by the Enterprise Systems Strategy (ESS). Visit ESS on MyMohawk for status updates and to learn about other projects and initiatives.