Following onboarding, the NHSmail Teams Phone System platform becomes self-service. The following Service Responsibilities are owned by the Onboarded Organisation (“Onboarded Organisation Service Responsibilities”).
This article will outline organisation’s responsibilities across the following categories:
- Service Responsibilities
- Direct Routing Infrastructure Requirements
- NHSmail Teams Phone System Management
- DNS Records
- Support Materials and Upskilling
- Organisation Mergers
- Network Connectivity
- Emergency Calling
- NHSmail Teams Phone System Power App Use
- Third-party Providers
- Local organisations considering onboarding to the NHSmail Phone System service must read through this guidance to determine and complete local pre-requisite activities before submitting an onboarding request.
- Organisations are responsible for managing their end-to-end onboarding to NHSmail Teams Phone System hosted on the central tenant.
- If a Multi-organisation: Organisations are responsible for delegating Teams Phone Admin Role permissions to individuals according to agreed local arrangements between organisations.
- If a Multi-organisation: Organisations are responsible for ensuring clear communication of the delegation of Teams Phone System Admin Roles to relevant individuals and agreeing local multi-organisational ways of working to facilitate the successful running of the service across multiple organisations. Failure to do so may mean number, policy and other configurations are overwritten.
- Organisations are responsible for the procurement, onboarding, assignment, and renewal of the telephony licences via the NHSmail portal. Please see this article for more information.
- Local Administrators (LAs) are responsible for configuring user policies of delegated Phone System Administrators with the free Power BI licence so they can access the reporting functionality of the Power App.
- Organisations are responsible for organising their own local service and administrative teams to support the use of NHSmail Teams Phone System within their organisation/s and preparing these teams accordingly to manage the service at a local level.
- Before raising an incident, Phone System Admins should ensure that they have referred to the appropriate guidance material to attempt to troubleshoot and resolve the issue themselves.
- Organisations are to ensure that designated Phone System Admins can successfully access the Power App RBAC controls following onboarding.
- Organisations are to ensure that designated Phone System Admins have suitable experience to provide Level 1 support (service desk and deskside support) and Level 2 triage and fix support (via delegated NHSmail Teams Phone System RBAC controls) to end users.
- Phone System Admins are responsible for all Telephony features that can be managed through the RBAC controls, this includes but is not limited to:
- End user telephone number allocation and management
- Purchasing new telephone numbers
- Porting telephone numbers
- Setting up custom feature policies and Caller ID policies
- Setting up and managing Auto Attendants & Call Queues
Direct Routing Infrastructure Requirements
- Organisations utilising Direct Routing are solely responsible for managing their respective SIP provider, underlying telephony infrastructure, SBCs, licensing, and SIP Trunks.
- To deploy distributed SBCs, local organisations will be responsible to deploy, configure and manage SBCs and SIP trunks. The tenant-level SBCs configuration, dial plans, voice routing, number management, and licensing will be performed via the NHSmail portal and Power Apps interface.
- Local organisations using distributed SBCs are responsible for finalising Dial Plans and Voice Routing policies as per their requirements.
- If your organisation is deploying its own SBCs or using one of the hosted SBC service providers for Direct Routing, it is your responsibility to ensure that the SBCs are Microsoft certified.
- If your organisation is deploying an SBCs or using one of the hosted SBC service providers for Direct Routing, it is the org responsibility to ensure that the SBC’s firmware is managed and updated regularly as per the SBCs vendor guidelines.
- Organisations must regularly monitor the updates released by your SBC and SIP Service Provider and action as early as possible. A failure to upgrade SBCs to the latest firmware version and maintain it can be a big security risk and contribute to toll fraud.
- Organisations are required to request a separate certificate for each of their SBCs via the Power Apps and HSS integration process.
- Each procured certificate provided by NHSmail Service Team will be valid for 1 year and it is the organisations responsibility to monitor the certificate lifecycle and request a renewal (via PowerApp by submitting a new Certificate Signing Request) ahead of its expiry and update it on the SBC.
- If there are any issues with an existing certificate or a CSR is provided incorrectly, organisations are responsible for providing an updated CSR for their certificate via the existing HSS form.
- Direct Routing enables connectivity to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) directly over SIP to provide flexible unified communication capability. Certified SIP Trunking Service providers help organisations to connect to external PSTN networks in a highly scalable and reliable way. It is the organisation’s responsibility to ensure that chosen SIP providers for Direct Routing are compatible for Microsoft Teams Direct Routing.
- The SBCs are required to have a presence on the internet, and it provides hackers an opportunity to scan the SBCs for vulnerability in an attempt to use them for toll fraud. Therefore, it is the organisations responsibility to ensure its network and firewall are configured to allow only the required traffic. Please check the documentation from your SBC vendor, SIP service provider, and Microsoft.
- Organisations must consult their SBC model and their SIP service providers to understand what codecs are supported and can be configured.
- Local organisations will be responsible to add all required SBCs via the Power Apps interface.
- As part of the onboarding process, local organisations will be required to accept the certificate usage policy.
- Local organisations are responsible to ensure that their SIP suppliers are hosted in the UK and all of their calls will be routed via the UK route instead of any overseas route.
- For security and compliance reasons, it is the organisation’s responsibility to ensure that chosen SIP providers for Direct Routing, will not terminate domestic calls outside of the UK (i.e., calls from UK-to-UK numbers will remain within a UK infrastructure).
- Local organisations are responsible for all onboarding and ongoing administration activities between their SIP provider and Phone System Power Apps.
NHSmail Teams Phone System Management
- Any changes made (by LAs or Phone System Admins via delegated NHSmail Teams Phone System RBAC permissions) to an organisation’s configuration post-onboarding are the responsibility of the organisation.
- NHSmail organisations must have the service numbers to create and manage call queues with external PSTN connectivity.
- Organisations are responsible for ensuring that all call queues where callers will be redirected to someone else in the organisation are regularly reviewed to ensure that the redirection can happen and to ensure that any users leaving the organisation are properly unassigned to policies, with new users assigned so the redirection does not break.
- Prior to porting commitments, LAs or Phone System Admins will be required to configure licences, numbers, and policies to end-users to avoid any service outage after the successful porting.
- Organisations are responsible for creating dial-plan normalisation rules as per their requirements.
- Organisations are responsible for creating voice routing policies as per their requirements.
- It is an organisation responsibility to ensure that any agents who will be receiving calls are enabled for Teams Phone System.
- Organisations using Direct Routing are responsible for maintaining a number inventory that replicates the range procured from the SIP provider. This includes accurately reflecting service/subscriber numbers. Failure to do may mean some numbers no longer work and calls will not be connected.
- Local organisations will be responsible to configure their DNS records (A Records or CNAME records) as per their FQDNs and the Public IPs.
Support Materials & Upskilling
- Upskilling on the Teams Phone System product is an LA and/or Phone System Admin responsibility. No training to LAs or Phone System Admins will be provided by the Teams Phone System Live Service Team.
- Organisations are to ensure that designated Phone System Admins read and understand all the associated NHSmail Teams Phone System guidance materials.
- All NHSmail Teams Phone System guidance materials will be held in a central repository on the NHSmail Support Site. An example of the materials that will be made available is included below:
- Introduction to Phone System
- Onboarding Guide – Direct Routing
- SBC Configuration (Onboarding – Direct Routing)
- Licensing Requirements Overview
- Phone System Policies (Calling Plans, Dial Plans, Auto-Attendants)
- Reporting – Calling Plans
- Reporting – Direct Routing
- If any information from the published guidance materials is used and edited by organisations, this is done at the organisation’s own risk.
If an NHSmail organisation onboarded to Phone System plans to go through a merger and/or acquisition process (for example, becoming part of an ICB), they will be required to recreate all existing policies and objects under their new ODS code as per their requirements and then assign these to users ahead of the merger completing.To do this, a Local Administrator with permissions under the new ODS code will need to assign Phone System Admin roles under the new ODS code to the intended Phone System Admins (either the same as under their previous ODS code or different individuals).
- NHSmail organisations have full control over their corporate network (local internet or secure boundary and HSCN) and are responsible for managing their connectivity, bandwidth requirements and the quality of service (QoS) to ensure their local network configuration is sufficient to support telephony traffic.
- Local organisations must follow the Microsoft 365 connectivity principles:
- Network readiness ensuring the network has enough bandwidth available for the modalities Teams will provide, including Teams Phone System
- Use the endpoint categories to differentiate the M365 traffic from generic traffic for efficient routing
- Egress M365 data connections through Internet as close to the user as practical
- Configure direct egress for the M365 connections, avoiding network hairpins and minimising network latency (RTT) to Microsoft’s network
- VPN is not designed or configured to support Real-Time Media traffic; therefore, organisations should ensure that users and devices are configured to bypass the VPN-Tunnel.
- Organisations will be required to open the required ports for all these IP addresses ranges on their network to allow incoming and outgoing traffic to and from the addresses for signalling and media.
- NHSmail organisations must work with their network Team and/or supplier (local or CN-SP if using the HSCN network) to configure the required network routing and the firewall rules to allow SBCs to communicate with Microsoft and the SIP service provider for inbound and outbound traffic.
- Emergency calling is not supported and should not be used on the NHSmail Teams Phone System platform. This is regardless of the PSTN connection option selected by the organisation (Calling Plans or Direct Routing).
- It is onboarded organisations’ responsibility to maintain dedicated line/s for emergency calling purposes which are not part of the NHSmail Teams Phone System platform.
NHSmail Teams Phone System Power App Use
- It is the responsibility of organisations to ensure that information submitted via the Power App is accurate and up to date.
Third party providers
- Third parties are responsible for technical support, troubleshooting, and updates to their respective technologies.
- Local Organisations are responsible for managing the end-to-end offboarding from Teams Phone System hosted on the central tenant.
- Organisations planning to port out their numbers when offboarding will be required to initiate a porting request via Phone System Power Apps.
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