As part of the Ofcom 2015 NGCS (National-Geographical Call Services) review, they stated that 0500 numbers would be withdrawn at a future date. They have now set the date for the withdrawal of the UK 0500 number range as 3rd June 2017. After this date, 0500 numbers will cease to work.

0500 is a Freephone number range. Like the well-known and widely used 0800 Freephone numbers, 0500 are used primarily to provide private and public sector voice services such as sales, enquiries and consumer helplines.

Created in 1982, no new 0500 numbers have been released since 1998 and the use of existing 0500 numbers by organisations has been in decline for several years.

Due to a lack of efficiency of 0500 numbers and the long term decline of the service, Ofcom have come to the decision that consumers would be better served by moving away from the 0500 service hence the decision to withdraw it altogether.

Qvoice, the telephony division of Quiss Technology can help you choose a new 0800 or 03 number to replace your existing 0500 number.

0800 and 03 numbers are free for your customers to call from a landline and unlike the 0500 numbers, are also free to call from a mobile. Calls to 03 numbers often cost the same as local/national calls from both landline and mobile networks.

We would recommend the earliest possible issue of your new number to allow time to phase it in. This way, you can run the old and new numbers in tandem for a period of time which gives your customers time to get used to the new number before the old one is switched off. It also means you can get your marketing materials updated in plenty of time to help promote the new number.

We can also help you phase out the 0500 number with a redirection message informing your customers of the new number. We strongly recommend that any announcements are put in place 3 to 6 months prior to the withdrawal of 0500 to make sure they have the most impact as possible.

To find out more, please contact Terry Faria on 01827 265000.