Polycom VVX 5.3.x and 5.4.x Visual Voicemail not working

We fired up some fresh Lync accounts the other day for a couple of users who were going to only be using a VVX 500 handset. They weren’t even going to be using the Lync/Skype client for messaging – they were just telephony users. I can imagine a number of scenarios where you may have this type of user, like a concierge or guard station where only a phone is required.

Unlike all the rest of our users, these accounts didn’t see their voicemails listed when they pressed the messages icon on their phone. Dialing in to the unified messaging subscriber access was fine, and the messages were there, but they just weren’t showing up when the user pressed the envelope icon.

Diving in to the logs on the phone showed the following:

0714111143|ec   |4|00|UM service is 1 and play on phone service is 1
0714111148|ec   |4|00|’calllogs’ service did not received expected folder ids.

Aha! Can’t find the voicemail folder, eh Lync?

Sure enough, when you log in to Outlook, you’ll find that the normal Lync folders haven’t been created yet. I assume that the Polycom UC software is set to look in the “Voice Mail” search folder, but as this folder hasn’t been created the phone gives up and shows a blank screen.

The solution? Log in to the account once with the desktop Lync 2013 / Skype for Business client. This initial login will create all the necessary folders required, and visual voicemail will start working correctly.