Over the past 6 years Unified Communications, or UC, is a buzzword that has swept over the business landscape like a rising tide through a reef pool, making its way into every nook and cranny and finding its place cross-departmentally in almost every industry. The trend is undeniable, and the value is real, but what good is UC if you don't know how to use it?
Unfortunately, this article will not give you the keys to understanding how to use every UC tool available on the market today. This is also NOT an article about what UC is (for that, head over to our very poignant and entertaining piece entitled: WTF is UC?). So what is this article about? When it comes to selecting a UC provider, there is an ocean of options, but perhaps no one does it better than our partners at ShoreTel. This article delivers explanations and video tutorials that show you exactly how to use your ShoreTel Phone System to leverage Unified Communications at your office.
Introducing ShoreTel Connect
ShoreTel Connect is: "a remarkable innovation in IP telephony and unified communications. The first of its kind, ShoreTel Connect is a platform built on a single software code base that means you can design your communications system any way you BLAH, BLAH, BLAH"
Again... who cares if you can't use it!?!
At Matrix Networks, our goal is evaluate business technology, become experts on the selected technology, and then help organizations implement their solutions with as little pain as possible. One way we do this is through education. The team of talented Pro-Techs, and client support staff here at Matrix are dedicated to providing the best ShoreTel Support possible. In an effort to do so, we have created a series of video tutorials that are intended to help end-users of our ShoreTel clients maximize their UC experience. After all, smart, educated clients make less mistakes and have happier end users - we like happy end users because that makes for happy administrators.
The first in this series is an explanation video that walks you through the client from start to finish. The video is a bit longer than the others you will find in this article so scroll down or Ctrl F for what you are looking for if there is something specific that brought you here today. Otherwise, enjoy!
ShoreTel Connect Client Overview
ShoreTel Connect Call Handling Mode
Call Handling Mode allows you to customize your communication experience. Essentially, this feature allows you to communicate your availability within your organization, schedule automated voicemail box messaging, and automate your call flow based on your calendar. Meaning if your calendar says you are in a meeting, your ShoreTel Client will know to send calls to voicemail or forward to your mobile device, whatever you would like. Think of it as a personal assistant that never talks back, won't call in sick, and always puts the toilet seat down.
ShoreTel Connect Call Handling Mode
How to Transfer Calls and use Conferencing on ShoreTel Connect
Transferring a call and using conferencing are two of the most important functions for end users of any phone system. So why do some phone vendors make it so hard!?! I mean seriously, there are few things more terrifying than the moment you say: "OK hold on and I'll transfer you over to Jamie" - but then you can't figure out how to and after 45 seconds of fumbling you have to go back and admit your inability. Oh, that doesn't happen to you? Well it does for some of your staff... here's a video to help:
ShoreTel ConnectTransfer and Conferencing Features
What is the People's Tab on ShoreTel Connect?
Modern phone systems allow for faster communication. Features like click to dial, presence, directory integration, groups, and favorites are just a few of the features you will find in most new phone systems. However, for many end users these features are simply dust in the wind. Mentioned once during training, and then never touched again. Leveraging the power of the People's Tab in ShoreTel Connect (sounds cooler than it is) allows for a customized and streamline communication environment. This next video will show you a few tips and tricks that you may be missing out on. "Power to the People!"
ShoreTel Connect People Tab
Matrix Networks for ShoreTel Support
We hope you have enjoyed the videos up to here. Let's face it, implementing a new business phone system isn't always easy. Having a partner who is experienced in deployment, training, and maintenance is paramount to your organization's success. If you think your business deserves better ShoreTel Support, take a moment to evaluate what makes Matrix Networks a premier ShoreTel Partner. Feel free to share the link below with your IT administrator.
OK, back to the good stuff... sorry about that :)
ShoreTel's Event Tab
Dovetailing off the previous video, the events tab is integrated with your Outlook or other calendar environment to easily manage your communications related to events you have daily. The ShoreTel Events Tab section of your ShoreTel Client allows you to easily setup, join, or initiate a meeting or conference. The Events tab even lets you build an agenda for you meeting for all participants to see.
ShoreTel Connect Events Tab
How to Manage Your ShoreTel Voicemails
Are you one of those end users who never checks their voicemail, storing 15, 30, or even 50+ voicemails at a time? Ask any IT administrator, and they will tell you; this is a common pain point. New office phone systems make ignoring voicemails easier than ever before with features like voicemail to email, and voicemail transcription services. The problem is, if you don't physically go and remove the voicemail by deleting it from your inbox, you may max out your resources for that extension. This causes headaches for your IT administrator, and makes you look foolish when someone calls you and gets the proverbial "this user has a mailbox that is currently full" automated message. Shame, shame, shame!
Like them or dismiss them entirely, voicemails aren't going anywhere. This training video provides insight on how to best manage your ShoreTel Connect voicemail inbox, with a focus on how to save voicemails and download for storage and/or sharing.
Managing ShoreTel Connect Voicemails
I don't always use my new business phone system's paging feature - but when I do, I use ShoreTel's Paging Feature. So perhaps this last video isn't going to pertain to all of you since overhead paging is not something that every business uses. However, for those that do, it is a critical business function utilized on a daily bases. For those that have a ShoreTel Phone System and use Overhead Paging, this video will show you how.
How to use the Paging Feature with a ShoreTel
A Trusted Partner for ShoreTel Support
Knowledge is power. At Matrix, we are dedicated to the continued education of our clients through a variety of mediums including educational articles, video training session, and in-person learning sessions, we call Refresher Courses. If you are a business owner or IT administrator running a ShoreTel Phone System for your organization, I highly recommend you sign up for our Monthly Roll-up so you can stay connected to one of the nation's best ShoreTel Support Providers (humble brag). Until then, enjoy the next article in our ShoreTel education, 3 Keys to a Successful ShoreTel Install.
Next Article: 3 Keys to a Successful ShoreTel Install
Author: Ryan Graven