November 28, 2022

Article
3 min

How Evolve IP’s Platform Turns Webex and Teams into a Full-Featured PBX System

Integrate advanced telephony features into collaboration platforms for an efficient, user-friendly experience.

Gary Coben

One of the lasting effects of the pandemic is that, for many of us, online meetings now make up a significant portion of our workday. Video meetings, chats and cloud-based file-sharing have become primary tools of our work. For me, a typical day is going from a Microsoft Teams meeting to a Teams chat to a Zoom or Cisco Webex meeting and back to Teams again. 

Our reliance on collaboration platforms and remote work has made a traditional PBX system unnecessary for many organizations. At the same time, many businesses still require the advanced telephony capabilities PBX systems typically provide. As a result, it makes sense to combine enterprise voice solutions within the collaboration platforms that employees are already using. 

That’s the vision behind Evolve IP, a Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) platform that integrates voice features and functionality from Cisco Broadsoft with Cisco Webex and Microsoft Teams. 

For instance, the platform makes it easy for employees to use both Teams-enabled devices and native SIP handsets to make, receive and route calls; record calls with artificial intelligence enhancements; and perform all the robust functions associated with omnichannel contact centers.

Advanced Telephony Within a Familiar Collaboration Platform

Collaboration platforms are an excellent solution for many employees’ needs, but they provide only limited PBX functionality compared with many of the of the critical functions associated with a complete telephony experience. For instance, Teams can’t turn on a paging system. It doesn’t integrate with Salesforce or other customer relationship management systems. Webex and Teams are great at what they do, but they weren’t designed to deliver receptionist clients or omnichannel call centers.  

However, integrating PBX functionality into those platforms lets organizations maintain critical telephony features. And because those features are embedded within the systems employees already use to perform much of their day-to-day work, workflows become much more streamlined and efficient. 

Evolve IP becomes the bridge between Cisco Webex or Microsoft Teams and the standard telephony features that traditional PBX systems provide.

Integrations Help Organizations Achieve Multiple Business Objectives

For example, we worked with MSG Entertainment — the company that owns Madison Square Garden and other high-profile venues and businesses — as it prepared to migrate to Microsoft Teams. 

MSG needed to meet several essential requirements, such as placing 911-enabled phone handsets at locations throughout the Garden and integrating its telephony with its customer relationship management solution. It also wanted to reuse existing physical handsets, which typically would not be compatible with Teams. By implementing the Evolve IP platform, MSG could deploy Microsoft Teams, with its preferred handsets, without sacrificing any of MSG’s high-priority telephony needs. 

Another customer, a business process organization, provides call center services for thousands of employees. Their transition to remote work was tricky, partly because the company had already deployed a specific telephony solution that it wanted to maintain. In this case, we provided the organization with a virtual desktop solution that integrated its legacy telephony applications within the virtual desktop. That’s an example of how Evolve IP’s platform can help organizations bridge UCaaS and contact center solutions from other providers. 

From an IT perspective, the Evolve IP platform makes it easy to configure and provision users and provides intuitive web-based controls to offer employees a simple, streamlined experience. Turning a collaboration platform into a complete PBX system is a natural transition for how we work today.

Story by Gary Coben, who has been on the Evolve IP Channel team for over 14 years and has more than 35 years in the channel community. He provides partners with a deep understanding of the sales, marketing and management needs required to successfully sell cloud communications and cloud computing technologies. He provides partners with the support and expertise necessary to meet customer needs and enhance their experience. Gary resides in the Greater Philadelphia area with his wife and his daughter, who's also a member of the Evolve IP team. He loves spending time with his wife traveling and being outdoors, and is an avid frequenter of fine restaurants.

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