About this service

I am thinking of using Vodafone One Net Express, why should I consider using Virtual Call Manager?

One Net Express is locked to the Vodafone network and carries an additional high monthly charge.

Virtual Call Manager offers you many more features than One Net Express, including a wide choice of On hold music as well as the freedom to chop and change mobile providers at your leisure without the risk of losing the allocated landline number or the constraints of being tied in to a lengthy contract.

Virtual Call Manager is an established and reliable service that has a 99.99% up time. It is completely independent to the mobile networks and therefore offers users redundancy should there be any technical problems. This is highlighted by the recent problems that Vodafone users experienced when both their mobile and there One Net Express numbers both failed at the same time leaving their business customers unable to receive any call whatsoever. Read more about the potential risks of choosing a single inbound provider at: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/08/24/vodafone_one_net_service_outage/

Is this service really free? Why is there no cost?

We offer this service to UK businesses absolutely free! There are no catches and no misleading '30 day trials'. We do not ask you for credit card details when you sign up! Our fully featured service is 100% free all of the time!

We give you two free 084 numbers connected to our powerful call management platform. All calls received on these 084 numbers will be delivered to your choice of UK landline numbers at no cost to you.

There are no charges or costs what so ever for our service, no set up fees and no monthly rental. Our system has no affect on your phone bill, so no sudden shocks. Over 80% of our new customers are referrals and recommendations from existing users; we think that says an awful lot about this business class service.

With over 30,000 users in the UK already registered to use this service you can be confident that no other call management service will offer you better value for money. We will give your company a great telephone image and ensure you 'Never Miss a Call Again'.

Our systems benefit from massive economies of scale, each month we pass many hundreds of thousands of minutes accross our platofrm. BT pays a small 'termination fee' for each call that we accept from them, enabling us to offer this service without making a charge. We are UK based . We don't waste money on an expencive office and we run our business with a high level of efficiency which helps keeps our costs low.

How much do my customers pay to call my 084 number?

Calls to 084X numbers cost just 4.2p per minute (+vat) from a residential BT landline. That's 40% cheaper than a standard UK national rate call! Calls to any 08 number can cost more when made from a mobile phone.

I have a question about Google Analytics...

Google Analytics integration gives you the ability to quickly and easily collect information on your call traffic in your Google Analytics account, along side your website traffic. Click here for a dedicated FAQ page on Google Analytics integration.

Is this service reliable or a second rate VOIP / SIP product?

Virtual Call Manager is a business class product and is highly reliable and resilient. It is designed and built to serve the needs of high volume user's. Currently over 25,000 businesses have signed up for an account with us.

The Switchboard is not built on a 'cheap' V.O.I.P. or S.I.P platform, but is built on a solid and reliable telephony infrastructure. This ensures that the call quality is always of the highest audio level and that the quality of each call is constant. Some of you with broadband numbers, V.O.I.P lines or PC voice applications will know that one call can be good quality and the next barely audible. Our solution is always good quality and offers the level of reliability a professional business needs.

Our state of the art Softswitch is co-located in London and housed with Telstra, who are Australia's incumbent carrier. Our infrastructure is dual redundant and we boast an uptime of plus 99.9%. Of course from time to time we have to fix and maintain our platform, but in most cases you will not notice when this happens. We have a team of dedicated in-house technical staff who monitor and maintain our systems 365 days a year.

How easy is it to set up?

It's extremely simple and very fast to set up. We allow you to set up the Switchboard from a single web page and we will provide you with a user name and password. All you need to do is click on the 'Get it Now/Sign up Now' link and choose the number you would like to set up. You have a few simple options to choose from, which are explained on the page. It should take no more than two minutes.

I don't like the intro message. Can I change it?

No problem! You can choose from a selection of intro messages, finding one that suits your company. Just click on the one you like, or record your own from your phone, then click to make it live! It's that simple!

Will my new 084 number be exclusive to me?

Yes! Once you have chosen a number it will not be allocated to anyone else while you are using it. Your number will be for your exclusive use. If you have not used the number for three consecutive months we will contact you to see if we can take it back to offer to other customers.

Can I keep my existing number too?

Yes. You can still keep your existing number. We will connect your new 084 number to your existing number, therefore your current number will not be affected. However your existing number will not benefit from our advanced features so we recommend promoting your new number as soon as possible on your website and marketing material.

What is the difference between 0843 and 0844 numbers?

There is no difference between 0843 and 0844 numbers. 0843 numbers are just the latest number ranges to be released in the UK. The call cost for both 0843 and 0844 are the same.

What can I do?

Can I get a memorable number?

We know how important a memorable number can be to your business. We are able to supply a limited quantity of 'GOLD' numbers. To check availability contact us.

Can I forward calls to a mobile phone?

Yes! You can route your queue number to any UK mobile phone number. However, due to the large charges imposed by mobile network operators, we make a small charge for this service. Once you sign up you will be able to load credit onto your account. This credit can be used to re-direct calls to any of up to five UK mobile numbers of your choosing. Instant top-ups are made through our secure billing partners 'WorldPay'.

What happens if someone hangs up when they are 'on hold'?

If a customer hangs up before you have a chance to answer their call we will email you their phone number, providing it is not withheld. This is a very valuable tool for your company. Imagine the last time you were in a call queue and hung up in frustration. What if a few seconds later that company called you back and apologised for missing your call?! Turn a potentially negative customer experience into a positive one!

This is one of the most beneficial features a small business could want out of a telephone system.

Can I choose the 'on hold' music?

Yes you can! Just log into your account, navigate to your number configuration page and click on the music drop down list to choose the "on hold" music that suits your company's image. We even cover the performing rights licence payment so you don't have to!

Can I have more than one number?

Yes. Once you are logged on to your account you have the option to add new numbers. Each number can be configured separately, so you can have a different number for sales, accounts, customer service...etc

Can I divert my 084 number to my VOIP number on my home router?

Yes. Our service works perfectly with VOIP services. At times, VOIP phones can take longer to begin ringing so we give you the option to extend the ring time of your 084 number when redirecting to a VOIP number making it work seamlessly.

You might want to check that your VOIP number is a normal geographic number and NOT a number starting with 05! 05 numbers are charged at a higher rate and we are NOT able to redirect to these numbers free of charge.

Business Benefits

What benefits would the Switchboard service offer my business?

Many UK businesses use an 084 number because it can give their business a national presence and the feel of a BIG company. Also, if a business relocates their office they can keep the same number without the expense of re-printing stationery or re-designing websites.

However, in today's competitive work place, that's not always enough. Did you know that lost or badly managed inbound calls are the single biggest reason small companies in the UK lose customers and revenues? Most businesses miss the odd call, are engaged from time to time or even forget to return messages!

This product helps you manage your inbound calls effectively, ensuring you Never Miss A Call Again!

We have an answer phone, but we sometimes forget to check the messages. How can your service help me with that?

You're not alone! Our development team find answer phones a pain! We forget to check them, they can fill up over night and worst of all you have to listen to the message three times before you have a chance to note it down!

We have simplified all of this! If we are unable to connect your caller because your line is either busy or not answered, we will offer the caller the opportunity to leave you a voicemail. We will then send the voice message to you via email, as an attachment. Once you have the message you can listen to it with any player, e.g. windows media player. Alternatively, you can store it or forward it as you would a normal email. This is a great use of email and is simple to use.

We are a small business and only have a few lines to our office. Can you help our customers to avoid the engaged tone?

One of the best features for small businesses is our system's ability to queue callers if your line is engaged or is not answered immediately.

We welcome the caller and inform them we are trying to connect them. The caller is put on hold, listening to the 'on-hold' music you have selected, until we can connect them to you. Your customer will never hear the engaged tone and you will be equipped to answer more calls.

I have people in several locations. Can you help me give out just one number?

Yes we can! You can select up to five locations for the call to be routed to. When a caller phones your number we ring each location in turn until we are able to connect the call. We call this our "Follow Me" application. It's great for people who work in more than one location, companies with several offices or even people that work between home and office.

I have sales people in more than one location. Can I give out one number for sales instead of three?

Yes. You can give out one single number for "sales" and have it connect in rotation to three separate locations. This is a great feature if you have sales people that work from home and you need to distribute the calls evenly between them. You can even log on to see the number of calls they have taken!