Lots of people decide to use their personal mobile number when starting a business, as the most straightforward way to get going. If you are thinking of using your own phone as the business line though, just remember that this can affect how you claim expenses, the image it presents, and even what happens as you grow.
Changing your number later can have huge implications
If you have been using your personal mobile number for your business, changing your business’s contact details means you’ll have to update your company information, website information and also let your customers know.
You’ll also have to hope that your customers remember to save your new number, or you may find that you’re receiving calls on your personal line for years to come! If you grow, it can make things a little tricky if you need to transfer the call to another colleague.
Keep the office hours inside the office
One of the major downsides of using your personal phone as your business number is that you have no control over calls coming in. Whenever you answer the phone to a number you’ll have to be in ‘business mode’ from the get-go, this can be tricky when out and about, especially if you don’t have access to resources you need to answer customer questions.
Having a separate business phone allows you to switch off in your downtime, without losing contact from friends and family! Plus, when it’s the business phone that rings, you know which hat to put on. It will give you some time to prepare before you pick up the phone if you suffer from phone anxiety.
Claiming business expenses on your phone
If you use a phone as part of running your business you may be able to claim the associated costs back as expenses. But! If you also use the same phone for personal reasons, you’ll have to be very careful to only claim for usage that’s to do with your business. It’s probably much more straightforward to simply have a separate phone which you use for business, making it much easier to work out what’s what.
Having a phone for staff to use
If you don’t have a dedicated phone line in your business, you might have to rely on your staff making calls from their personal devices. This can be seen as unprofessional and your staff will likely have objections – especially if it’s costing them money. You also won’t have any kind of control over phone calls if they are coming from personal numbers.
If you opt to use a virtual phone system for the office, you’ll be able to see a record of all calls being made and coming through. You’ll also be able to set extensions to the phone number to route calls to certain members of staff. This makes the whole process of communicating with clients and suppliers much more efficient and organised.
While some companies will need a business phone, others will not. It largely depends on the individual needs of the company. Sole traders, for example, probably don’t need a business line if they are the only one taking the calls – unless they want to keep their business and private lives separate.
If you would like to learn more about how Pandle can help you keep track of your business’s finances, get in touch using the Live Chat button on screen, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org