Skype to Teams migration

Skype for Business will officially retire on 31st July 2021, and will not be accessible after this date. Microsoft Teams (Teams) is the replacement solution for Skype for Business. Customers have until the 31st July 2021 to plan and execute a migration to Teams. Teams is now the standard solution for calling, messaging, collaboration and meeting capabilities.

Skype’s retirement is a significant milestone and transition for many organisations, and it will inevitably raise some questions and concerns. What is the future for Skype for Business Online? Can the two solutions be used at the same time? How will I migrate Skype to Teams? Here are five tips for making your transition from Skype to Teams as smooth a journey as possible:

Don’t wait, migrate

We now know that Skype for Business will be retired in July 2021. To best prepare, organisations should start planning for the transition now. Among other things, they should set up and test the Teams application and understand the new features that Microsoft Teams brings to the table.

Look forward to more than just calling and communication

Teams brings many collaboration tools to the table. As well as calling, Teams combines the business-critical communication capabilities of Skype for Business on a much more robust HD platform, with additional collaboration tools, app integration, file storage and co-authoring capabilities in a single interface.

It is crucial that organisations control the applications that integrate with Teams by phasing in new features, communicating changes effectively and empowering admins to support Teams fully from the start.

Read our guide Microsoft Teams: Quickstart guide for IT Admins

Prepare users and stakeholders

Teams is designed for business users to be more productive. The more ownership and engagement organisations can achieve in the early stages of the roll out, the more significant the productivity increase will be.  Successful projects begin by bringing together the right stakeholders; the individuals who need to be involved in planning and execution. Ensure your upgrade project team includes executive sponsors who represent both business and IT, designated IT admins for ongoing support, technology early adopters and key business users or process owners.

Get plans in place for governance

Teams is the fastest growing business application in Microsoft’s history, so it’s essential to have governance plans in place to manage the new capabilities for sharing files and integrating productivity apps in the Teams platform.

Governance and organisational best practice help business users understand how to improve their daily work practices with Teams, how to use the tools consistently to improve productivity and how to avoid creating duplicate Teams, groups and content. Well communicated governance can significantly reduce confusion for users as they begin to understand the power of Microsoft Teams.

Stage your roll-out

Plan for the technical setup and testing of Teams, and understand the specific features and security capabilities of the application. Ensure that you have a staged rollout strategy to prepare owners and users for maintaining and managing their teams to ensure you get optimised productivity at all levels using the many features the Teams has to offer.

Read our Skype to Teams migration guide to find out more.