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Ofcom price changes to 08 numbers – are you ready for July 1st?

If you’re a business advertising an 08, 09, 116 or 118 number, it may have passed you by that Ofcom are introducing some major changes to the way these numbers are billed from tomorrow, 1st July 2015. And, if you’re offering an 08 number, there are some aspects of this change you must act on in order to stay compliant.

But before you panic, help is at hand from Gamma.

However, it’s important to understand the changes and the way they affect users and callers first. At first glance, it may all look daunting, but with a little explanation it should all become clear.

Ofcom’s changes (they are not Gamma’s changes!) will impact any person or organisation advertising or calling an 08, 09, 116 or 118 number. If you’re the owner of an 08 number, we expect these changes to affect the way you are billed and envisage an increase in charges, especially relating to freephone numbers. On the other side of the coin, if you’re calling these numbers, we also expect an increase in the cost of calling them.

OK, so you have an 08 number and you’re unprepared. What to do next?

You have two options following the change:

› Move your 08 number to an 03 number – this means you can avoid higher call charges attached to your own 08 number.
So what does an 03 number do? An 03 number is not subject to these Ofcom changes and therefore the new charges will not apply. 03 numbers are also included in ‘minute bundles’ so your customers won’t pay anything extra to call you. Having an 03 number offers a national presence without high call charges, a great way of boosting customer service and confidence in the number.
› Ensure your 08 number is compliant. This must reflect the full calling costs. So if you are happy to keep your 08 number regardless of these changes, then we can still help you prepare. You’ll need to amend stationery, vehicle wraps, web pages or promotional items containing your 08 number with information reflecting the full cost of the call though.

Whether you have an 08 or not, we can still offer support, so don’t despair!

In short, if you offer an 08 number you will need to understand the new charges applicable and ensure your number is being advertised in line with the new regulations. If you don’t have an 08 number, we recommend that you begin monitoring your outgoing calls to measure the impact of the change and act accordingly. We have various products which can help you to achieve this. Contact us to find out more about these options.

Act now – go to our dedicated FAQ page that covers what the changes are and how Gamma can help you manage them.