Migrating from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams

Migrating from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams is surely a criterion for success currently sitting within many enterprise IT, collaboration and other departments that look after meetings. With both being a collaboration service from Microsoft, surely the migration should be a piece of cake, a switch off on Friday afternoon from Skype for Business and turn on of Teams first thing Monday morning?

Of course it’s not. There are a number of factors that need to be considered in this journey, and as a video conferencing and collaboration managed service provider and systems integrator, this is a journey that Videocall can help you navigate to achieve your desired success.

If you’re considering Microsoft Teams and not one hundred percent sure yet if it is the collaboration platform for your company then read our whitepaper on Cisco Teams vs Microsoft Teams to get all the facts.

1.      Is your current Skype for Business deployment being delivered from Office365 (O365) or is it on-premises?

Microsoft Teams is only available within O365 and therefore delivered from the Microsoft Azure cloud. If you are already within the Microsoft O365 world then this will be less of a consideration. If you still have an on-premises deployment however, then you will have to factor in cloud migration as well as licences. In the O365 world you will be looking at E3 and E5 licencing for video conferencing and audio respectably, compared to the CAL Enterprise or Plus licence that you may currently be using


2.      Collaboration usage

Consideration must be put in to the fact that Skype for Business is a messaging and calling service, whilst Microsoft Teams offers a lot more in terms of collaboration – Persistent chat, collaboration tools, whiteboarding, file transfer, real time updates and document storage to name just a few. With the addition of these features you should expect more activity to take place within Teams than there was in Microsoft Skype for Business, which segues to the next point


3.      Bandwidth

With more activity comes the requirement for more bandwidth across the network. Add to that the fact that Microsoft Teams has the ability to have add-ons from the likes of Salesforce, Mailchimp, Cisco Webex Meetings and SurveyMonkey again to name just a few, with a simple click from Microsoft’s AppSource. Calculating extra bandwidth for migration would be advisable, although migration is unlikely to happen overnight so could be increased in stages following periodic review ensuring that it is fit to support the service


4.      Migration times

With enterprise businesses having thousands of employees, an overnight or over the weekend switch of everyone from one service to another is avoided wherever possible. The same should be considered when migrating from Skype for Business to Teams. Videocall’s ICE manged platform service can support both Microsoft Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams, meaning that it is the perfect choice for staggered deployments across the business, whilst our professional services can help with the success of a staggered migration. Videocall can even ensure that both workflows are available in Microsoft Outlook when required for easy ad-hoc meeting booking. It is also worth considering migration timings around required level of functionality and when users are ‘able’ to move.  


5.      Meeting room technology

Having a staggered deployment can also mean that you do not need to rip and replace fully functional meeting room technology, and it can be used for longer within the ICE environment with full interoperability connecting both Skype for Business and Teams meetings together


6.      Training

Whilst both of these collaboration platforms are Microsoft owned, they are different, mainly due to all the extra features, meaning that training will be required. Videocall can help with this training process ensuring that users can confidently use Teams to collaborate effectively


7.      Document storage

As mentioned in point two, Microsoft Teams allows for users to store documents from within the application. These documents are stored in your team’s SharePoint folder or OneDrive if it is a private or group chat. Whilst document storage may well be run as a separate project to collaboration, they certainly overlap, and this should not be ignored in the strategy process


8.      Data

What will happen to all of the stored conversations that have taken place on Skype for Business and that are stored somewhere on your Exchange Server? Will these need to be migrated into the Teams environment or can they be removed? A review of governance and compliance should take place to ensure that everything is accordingly so


9.      Is Microsoft Teams the correct choice

This final point is one that only you can answer based on your business and your user requirements. There are alternatives to Microsoft Teams including Microsoft Webex Team and Slack. Each have their own pros and cons of which you can read in our whitepaper – The Battle of the Titans 

Microsoft does provide online guidance to help you ‘Get Started’ on your Skype for Business to Teams upgrade with a step by step guide from engaging project stakeholders through to operational excellence. The fact that they are forcing everyone to move to Teams in the not so distant future suggests that they should be helping.

Here at Videocall we have first hand knowledge of enterprise businesses making this migration, and we know how to help deliver successful customer outcomes related to project criteria. We use of past experiences to help guide companies to a painless migration avoiding any pitfalls along the way.

Are you ready to talk about your Microsoft Teams migration? Do you want a meeting with one of our experts to discuss your success criteria? We are always happy to help. Use the one of the contact forms on the website, email cloud@videocall.co.uk  or call us on +44 (0)1276 706 706 today.