Get started with UniCom/Skype for Business

Eligibility and account types

At Indiana University, the UniCom service provides unified communications via the Microsoft Skype for Business clients. Phone service for faculty and staff is provided by UniCom Enterprise Voice. Students, as well as faculty and staff members with no IU phone number, may use UniCom Basic, which operates independently of a phone number.

Note:
Office telephone service for faculty and staff at Indiana University will begin to transition from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams at IU in the first quarter of 2023. UITS encourages all students, faculty, and staff to switch from Skype for Business to Teams for chat now. Faculty and staff should continue to use Skype for Business for external phone calls until notified that their account has been moved to Teams Calls. For more, see About Microsoft Teams Calls at IU.

For more about the features of the two different modes, see IU UniCom feature comparison.

When you sign the Emergency 911 statement (see below), you automatically get a UniCom Basic account. To change your service, contact your department's telecommunications coordinator or IT Pro.

If you do not know who your telecommunications coordinator is, at IU Bloomington, call 812-856-2287, option 3; at IUPUI, call 317-274-3004, option 3. You can also email Communications Planning and Implementation.

Note:
To learn the name of your department's IT Pro, consult your supervisor, your departmental website, or IT People. If you still cannot identify your IT Pro, call the UITS Support Center at 812-855-6789 (Bloomington) or 317-274-4357 (Indianapolis).

Emergency 911 calls

If you're a faculty or staff member, you can use Skype for Business to make phone calls from remote locations as well as on campus, and these calls will use your office phone number, no matter where you are. Therefore, you should ensure that Skype for Business has correct location information for you in case you need to use it to dial 911; however, UITS recommends using a cell phone or any available landline to call 911 if possible. The way Skype for Business gets your location will vary based on how you are connected; see below.

UniCom Basic users can only call other UniCom users by name, and thus cannot use UniCom to dial 911.

To be activated for the UniCom service, you need to read and agree to the e911 Agreement explaining this (IU Exchange login required).

How Skype for Business receives location information

  • If you're on campus, your location information will update automatically, and be reported to emergency responders correctly, even if you take your device to another campus location, unless you are connected to a VPN. However, location information may be somewhat less accurate or precise when connected to the wireless network than with a wired connection.

    If you notice any problem with your location information, you can report location changes at 911 Location Change, or contact your campus Support Center.

  • If you're off campus and connected to the VPN, Skype for Business will prompt you to set your location. See the instructions below. If you don't set it, no location information will be transmitted to emergency responders.
  • If you're off campus and not connected to the VPN, Skype for Business will not prompt you to set your location, but you can still do so following the instructions below. If you don't set it, no location information will be transmitted to emergency responders.
  • If you're signed into Skype for Business both on and off campus, you will not be prompted to set your location information on the off-campus device, but you can still do so following the instructions below. If you don't set it, no location information will be transmitted to emergency responders.
  • If you are remotely connected to a computer on campus, you cannot update its automatically assigned campus location. You should use a different phone number to call 911 if you are using Skype for Business via Remote Desktop.
  • VoIP phones will transmit the location correctly if used in the location where they were installed.

Set your location

Note:
Your address is visible only to emergency responders. This is true regardless of whether you check or uncheck the Show Others My Location option. The name you give a saved location (such as "Home", for example) may be visible to others, however.

Windows

To set your location, below your name and status information in the main Skype for Business window, select Set Your Location and type the address of your current location. Be as accurate as possible in order to allow emergency responders to reach you.

Alternatively, if your location is a place you're likely to be often, you can give it a name and save it for future use:

  1. In the main Skype for Business window, choose the arrow next to "Set Your Location", and select Set Location....
  2. In the "Edit Location" dialog box, next to "Location name:", type a name, such as Home.
  3. In the fields below, fill in the appropriate components of the address, and select the country from the "Country/Region:" drop-down list.
  4. Choose OK.

macOS

Important:
Due to inconsistent behavior when testing the process of adding locations on Skype for Business for macOS, UITS recommends using a cell phone or landline to call 911 if you're using a Mac off campus.

If you see an "Emergency Calling" dialog in Skype for Business for macOS, select Do not show this message again to prevent it from reappearing.

Software

Note:
IU is currently migrating from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams at IU. During the transitional period, you can use either service (with some limitations) to communicate with multiple people via phone, instant messaging, or video. For more on Microsoft Teams, see Get started with Microsoft Teams at IU. For more about the transition, see About Microsoft Teams Calls at IU.

Equipment

To use the voice communication capabilities of UniCom, you'll need a headset, or a phone optimized for Skype for Business; "qualified" devices may not be fully supported. If you want others to see you in videoconferencing, you'll also need a webcam. Before making your decision, we recommend you contact UITS Telecom: at IU Bloomington, call 812-856-2287 option 3; at IUPUI, call 317-274-3004 option 3. You can also email Communications Planning and Implementation. For more, see About office telephone equipment at IU.

Log in

By default, Skype for Business for Windows launches automatically when you log into Windows, although you can change this setting. You can also set this option in macOS. All clients will log you in with your primary user account by default; you may be prompted to authenticate to complete the login. If you need to log into an alternate account (such as a group account), you may need to sign out and log in manually. For more, see Log into UniCom with Skype for Business in Windows or macOS.

Note:
The first time you call with UniCom from outside of IU, you will need to connect to IU's VPN. Afterwards, you should not need to connect to UniCom through the VPN again.

Learn the basics

To learn how to perform common tasks in Skype for Business, see Skype for Business help & learning.

Troubleshooting, help, and feedback

If you're having trouble, try signing out of and completely closing your client software (including Outlook, if you use UniCom Enterprise Voice), and restarting to see if that resolves the problem.

For help, contact your campus Support Center.

This is document awif in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2023-01-17 11:41:02.