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Unified Communications

Unified communications (UC) is the integration of various communications tools such as telephone, instant messaging, email, and web conferencing.
Commonwealth employees currently have access Skype for Business and/or Skype for Business and/or OpenScape UC.  

Area code dialing update

Starting on August 26, 2017, all users in the 717 area code will be required to dial 10 digits (area code + telephone number) when making any outbound local calls and 11 digits (1+ area code + telephone number) for any outbound long distance calls. A new 223 area code will be introduced starting in September that will require this change in dialing. Please update your contact lists and speed dials to include these updates. Any questions, please reach out to your agency’s telecommunications office.  

Skype for Business

Skype for Business (SfB) is the commonwealth's preferred unified communications tool that allows for instant messaging, presence for contacts and collaboration conferencing. As the product matures, we will offer additional features, including phone integration and audio conferencing.

Getting Started

Not all agencies have Skype for Business. Please contact your agency telecommunications management officer for more information.


Skype for Business is not a fully developed solution and therefore has a few limitations in its features and functions. Current commonwealth users do not have access to the following:  
  • Click to Call - Currently, there is no connection between SfB and the public telephone network. Users will still need to make phone calls through the current Penn Connect Desktop Phones 
  • Audio Conferencing - This also requires connection to the public telephone network. Users will need to utilize OpenScape UC or WebEx for audio conferencing with an associated phone number to distribute to participants.  

User Guides