Exchange Contacts and Teams

Brass Contributor

Should contacts added via

Be visible \ searchable in teams?

In my test and production tenant the answer is no.
eg Adding a contact via the admin center such as "john Smith" contact with a valid e-mail address. I can see the contact in outlook\GAL
In teams searching for "john", "john smith", "john ", "smith", "smith " etc does not find any results
(The production tenant has many contacts none of which are visible in teams)

However raising an MS case the engineer said it did work for him in his testing

Any advice welcome
Note this question does not relate to personal contacts stored in outlook\teams but to contacts in the GAL

1. Should contacts from the GAL be visible in teams
2. If yes how do I make them visible in my tenant (There are only so many ways to add a contact via the admin center)

10 Replies

Hi @Alistair Keay ,

Microsoft doesn't support Azure AD contacts in Microsoft Teams.


Take a look at the Microsoft Teams app Unified Contacts from glueckkanja-gab, my employer.

The app will find Azure AD contacts and will support your users to select the correct calling type like Teams call or PSTN call. Also, it allows to dial the office phone number easily from the contact card or the cell phone number.

Currently, the app supports Azure AD and the personal Outlook contact store (requires Exchange Online) for contact search.

Some new features are just around the corner and will come in the next few weeks.


Thanks for the reply.
When you say "Microsoft doesn't support Azure AD contacts in Microsoft Teams" _ is this documented anywhere?
Why was the MS engineer able to demonstrate that is appeared to work for him.
Thanks for the suggestion of your application
Sorry, can't help out with an official docs article. It's just testing and searching the web.
And it's my experience from several Microsoft Temas Phone System projects in my daily work as UC consultant ;)
Understood and thanks. Feature ID: 93050 removed a lot of pain for telephony but this feature relates to personal outlook contacts.
The requirement I have is to allow a search for and then IM a federated company based on finding a friendly name in the GAL
best response confirmed by Therese_Solimeno (Moderator)
I have some final feedback

In summary
Do not expect to see results for EXO contacts in teams.
Another area I also explored was "mail enabled users". While they do appear in a search via a friendly name they act very much like guest accounts. ie mail flow works to external address but IMs stay within the org and do not go to an external federated company.

@Alistair Keay 


Microsoft 365 Roadmap | Microsoft 365

It has been added to general availability that Exchange contacts with phone numbers are visible in teams calling options. Although in my demo environment I can only see some and not all of the contacts (I think it's sync time).


Microsoft Teams: Exchange Contacts available in Calling pickers

Exchange contacts with associated phone numbers will be available as part of the drop down selection in all Calling people pickers, such as the Dialer or call transfer, for customers that have PSTN enabled.


Indeed this is still not working. The stange this is that the article has also been removed from the roadmap

Thats weird and unfortunate as we're in dire need of this feature.
Thing is, we have normal user accounts in Azure that represent our Teams telephones and make them searchable within Teams in order for users to look them up and directly call a certain extension within the company. These telephones merely represent people but rooms or specific departments in the company.
These user accounts are not licensed or mail enabled. They just have a phone number associated with it. These accounts have to be "sign in allowed" enabled in order to show up in Teams when searching. As soon as "sign in allowed" gets disabled (in order to protect the account) it stops being searchable.
What does "sign in allowed" have to do with being searchable within Teams???

And I can't find any documentation on how to configure this properly and correctly?

Hi @jaymz1102 ,

Microsoft Teams only searches for enabled user accounts. If you create disabled user accounts (and this is the case if you create accounts with "Logon not allowed"), the accounts are no longer discoverable by Teams.
This is an expected behavior.

@Thorsten Pickhan 


Hi Thorsten, thanks for your reply. As this is an expected behavior as soon as the corresponding accounts are disabled... I was wondering whether there is another solution to this? With so many accounts being enabled it's quite difficult to ensure their security. At least I have to MFA-enable all those accounts, but that seems quite an administrative overhead that no one really needs as there should be a more straightforward solution to this, e.g. disabled service accounts, EOL contacts, et al
Very unfortunate ...