Microsoft Teams – A real world use for Islands Mode with a SfB Contact Centre?

Scenario: Customer wants to migrate to Teams, but they have a Contact Centre (CC) / Call Recording solution attached to their Skype for Business Server (SfBs) environment. They can’t migrate the CC to Teams yet as there isn’t a feature parity solution that works with Teams. They are happy with their current CC solution so plan to leave their CC users on SfBs and migrate everyone else to Teams Only mode.

The customer wants the CC users to use SfB for CC call handling, outbound PSTN calls & internal transfers. They should use Teams for all other modalities, including Instant Messaging and Meetings.

Here are the Coexistence Modes available for the SfB / CC users.

SfB OnlyNot suitable, disables Teams, users must use Teams for IMs and Meetings like the rest of the org
Teams Collaboration ModeNot suitable, this would make the SfB client default for incoming IMs & would not allow Teams meetings
Teams Collaboration and Meetings ModeNot suitable, this would allow Meetings in Teams, but the SfB client would be default for IMs.
Teams OnlyNot suitable, user would need to be hosted Online and disabled for SfB, breaking the CC.
Islands SfB and Teams operate as two separate clients. IMs & calls initiated from Teams Only users would be delivered to the Contact Centre users Teams client. CC users can use their Teams client to initiate IMs and use Teams for Conferences.

It looks like we have a valid use case for Islands. Next we will look at how we can improve this solution as users could still use their SfB clients to initiate IMs and start SfB conferences. In terms of the CC users, they need the ability to do two things in SfB

1) Make / Receive PSTN calls via the CC
2) Transfer a PSTN call to a back office Teams Only user

The steps to do this are:

  • Disable Conferencing in SfBs. Ensure users are allocated a Conferencing Policy with all features disabled, including multi-party IM chat – Force the users to use Teams
  • Disable SfB Mobile Sign-in. Users should use the Teams app on their Mobiles.
  • Optional – Disable External Access. If CC users are always office based, then it would be worth creating an External Access policy to block SfB sign-in over the Edge server

Disable Conferencing PowerShell example:

Note – Most SfB Contact Centres use the conferencing service. You will need to ensure that you assign a Conferencing Policy that isn’t restricted to your CC TrustedApplicaitons/ApplicationEndpoints as per the vendors instructions.

  New-CsConferencingPolicy -identity  "CC-Disable-Conferencing" `
  -AllowIPAudio     $False `
  -AllowIPVideo     $False `
  -AllowMultiView    $False  `
  -Description     "Disables all SfB conferencing features" `
  -AllowParticipantControl   $False `
  -AllowAnnotations    $False  `
  -DisablePowerPointAnnotations   $False `
  -AllowUserToScheduleMeetingsWithAppSharing $False  `
  -AllowNonEnterpriseVoiceUsersToDialOut  $False `
  -AllowAnonymousUsersToDialOut    $False `
  -AllowAnonymousParticipantsInMeetings   $False `
  -AllowExternalUsersToSaveContent   $False `
  -AllowExternalUserControl    $False `
  -AllowExternalUsersToRecordMeeting   $False `
  -AllowPolls      $False  `
  -AllowSharedNotes     $False `
  -EnableDialInConferencing    $False `
  -EnableAppDesktopSharing    "None" `
  -AllowConferenceRecording    $False `
  -EnableP2PRecording     $False `
  -EnableFileTransfer     $False  `
  -EnableP2PFileTransfer    $False  `
  -EnableP2PVideo     $False  `
  -AllowLargeMeetings     $False `
  -EnableDataCollaboration    $False `
  -MaxVideoConferenceResolution    VGA `
  -MaxMeetingSize     2 `
 -EnableMultiViewJoin     $False

Disable Mobile Sign-In PowerShell example

New-CsMobilityPolicy -Identity "CC-DisableMobility" -EnableMobility $False

Disable External Access PowerShell example (Optional)

New-CsExternalAccessPolicy -Identity "CC-Disable-All" `
-Description "Disable SfB sign in from the internet and disable all federation" `
-EnableOutsideAccess $False `
-EnableFederationAccess $False `
-EnablePublicCloudAccess $False `
-EnablePublicCloudAudioVideoAccess $False `
-EnableXmppAccess $False | out-null

At this point, users are forced to use Teams for Conferencing & Mobile sign-in, but they could still use their Windows SfB clients to initiate IMs and P2P Video Calls which are not required in a Contact Centre. It’s not possible to do this with a SfB policy, but it is possible via the registry. We can achieve this by pushing out the following registry file to all Windows Machines. It could be locked down to CC users machines, but if they roam onto another machine they won’t have the key. As all other users are Teams Only, there shouldn’t be an issue pushing this out globally.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


That’s it, users will be able to use SfB to handle Contact Centre calls, but will be forced to use Teams for all other features. This isn’t a long term solution and when a native Teams version of your Contact Centre is available, you should migrate the users.

Disclaimer – This post is for information only. Test thoroughly in your environment.

One Reply to “Microsoft Teams – A real world use for Islands Mode with a SfB Contact Centre?”

  1. Bravo Chris.

    Waiting for Teams to catch up with SfB for CC is becoming a painful experience. This is a very good, albeit not long term, solution.

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