2021 marks the year that Skype for Business online is no longer supported by Microsoft. In addition, no new features will be added to Skype for Business servers.
While you’ve been stuck at home these last few months, you’ve likely seen hundreds of commercials for Skype’s replacement … Microsoft Teams.
- Microsoft is recommending Teams for businesses that leverage the core functions of Skype for Business and,
- Teams Direct Routing for organizations that have integrated on-premises voice via onsite SBC / carrier trunks.
If you’ve not yet started the migration to Teams, here are few key considerations:
- There is no automated upgrade path
While Microsoft touts a “coexistence” migration path from Skype to Teams, these have proven to be difficult and confusing.
- Teams Direct Routing implementations require some serious expertise (check out our implementation guide here).
Suggested Next Steps for Skype For Business End of Life
- Check out the Teams Upgrade framework online.
- It’s important to note that there is no automated upgrade path. You will need to set up Teams as if it’s a new tenant, and then figure out how to move people to Teams over time. Even though they try to make it look prescriptive
- Consider if you need services to co-exist while you’re transitioning. These modes blend meetings and chat based on your choices and move users from one client to the other.
Most Microsoft consultants are recommending ripping off the Band-Aid and jumping right in.
- Determine when you want to integrate your communications/voice platform with Microsoft Teams.
- If you’ve already integrated a voice solution with Skype, start doing your due diligence on pricing models for Teams Direct Routing and evaluate Teams phone systems for users that need a handset.
Want To Work With An Expert with Microsoft Teams Direct Routing and Voice Experience?
If you’re a mid-market or enterprise business looking to move to Microsoft Teams, Evolve IP can help. Our work-from-anywhere platform, Evolve IP Workspaces, integrates Teams with Cisco voice communications. It’s direct routing married to the #1 enterprise VoIP solution in the world.
Additionally, as a Microsoft Gold CSP, we have hundreds of MSFT certified technologists to make sure your transition is seamless and can also provide M365 licensing and a ‘clean-up’ with best practices in the event you implemented Teams on the fly due to COVID.
- Microsoft announced in September 2017 that Skype for Business would be replaced with Teams as Microsoft’s meetings and collaboration platform.
- Support for Skype for Business online will end in July 2021.
- Skype for Business Server 2019 will receive support through October 14, 2025, but will not receive any new features.