Tech Tip: New Voicemail Feature with Office 365

By: Ryan Johnson

Office 365 logo and telephone picture for tech tip

A new voicemail feature has been integrated with Office 365 that will allow Penn State faculty and staff voicemail users to more easily manage their voicemail messages, save time and share information quicker.

Single Inbox connects faculty and staff voicemail accounts with email inboxes and gives users more options for retrieving, managing and storing their messages for better long-term accessibility and increased productivity.

In addition to the traditional methods of checking and managing, users can now check and manage their voicemail in Outlook. With Single Inbox, they will receive an email each time they receive a new voicemail. The email includes a transcription and an audio recording of the message.

Below are a few notes related to the new Single Inbox feature enhancement:

  • Voicemail messages will appear as an email in Outlook with a transcription of the message in the email body and a recording of the message attached as a .wav file.
  • Users can listen to, rewind and fast-forward these recorded messages using media players on their systems.
  • Messages that are read or deleted in email will be marked as read or deleted within the voicemail system and vice versa.
  • The Message Waiting Indicator light on the user’s VoIP telephone will follow the status of voicemail messages delivered to their email account.
  • Users may still listen to voicemail messages as they normally would on their phones.
  • Because voicemails will exist in Outlook, users can take advantage of Outlook’s organizational features by simply moving voicemail messages into related email folders such as ones for projects, certain co-workers or events.
  • Where it previously wasn’t possible, users will be able to share voicemails received from outside working groups with team members by forwarding the message along like a regular email.
  • Users can leverage Outlook’s calendaring features. Voicemail users will be able to call into their voicemail to hear a list of upcoming meetings and their participants, send a message about a meeting, accept or decline invitations and cancel a meeting they’ve organized.


Single Inbox is enabled for all faculty and staff who subscribe to the University’s VoIP voicemail services, however, users will be able to change their preferences for voicemail notifications and how they appear in their email inboxes.

Single Inbox is only available in areas serviced by the University’s Cisco voicemail system and whose users have migrated to Office 365.

To learn more about the Single Inbox feature or to discontinue, resume or modify preferences for voicemail notifications, visit KB0011940 Telephony: Single Inbox – Index of Informational Articles on the Penn State Knowledge Base.