Does your business use an 084x, 087x, 09 or 118 number?
If so, there are some important changes that you need to be aware of.
If you use the numbers above, also referred to as non-geographic call services (NGCS), there are some new responsibilities that you will have.
These changes come into effect this year and will impact any organisation that uses 084x, 087x, 09 or 118 services. From June 2015 you will be required to advertise the cost of calling your non geographic number in a particular way so that you comply with Ofcom, PhonePayPlus and the Advertising Standards Agency.
The cost of calling 084x, 087x (including 0845 and 0870), 09 and 118 numbers will be split into two parts:
- An Access Charge: This part of the call charge will be set by your callers’ phone company and represents their revenue for making the call.
- A Service Charge: This is the rest of the call charge and is the amount that is given to your phone company and is onwardly shared with you as applicable. The NGCS number you use determines this.
- 0800/0808 numbers will become free to call from mobiles and will likely have a significant increase in cost to you, the provider. 0500 numbers are being withdrawn in 2017 so these are excluded.
What you need to do:
- Review all of your marketing material and advertising. When the new regulations come into effect in June 2015, companies that provide services using 084, 087, 09 or 118 numbers will be required to communicate the charges clearly. Wherever you advertise or promote one of these numbers, you must ensure that your service charge is displayed in a prominent position, and in close proximity to the telephone number, in all cases. As an example, the following is likely to be considered compliant “Calls will cost 5p per minute plus your telephone company’s Access Charge” – although we recommend you seek individual advice from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) at asa.org.uk/industry-advertisers
- Decide if 08 numbers are still an appropriate contact/marketing method for your customer engagement and either plan for the increase in cost or consider a different number, such as a fixed line and mobile friendly 03 number.
Your new pricing information must be ready to go in your advertising, promotional material and communications from the point of the change, which is expected to be on the 26th June 2015.
If you need some free advice on any of the isses raised above please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0800 107 9444