Phone Etiquette

General Etiquette

  • Ringer volume should be kept at a moderate level when in an open office environment.
  • Care should be used when choosing a ring tone for your phone. Be mindful of disturbing others in your area.
  • Speakerphone should not be used in an open office environment unless everyone in the area is on the call.
  • All calls should be answered within 3 rings.
  • Be courteous to all callers. Smile when you answer the phone. It really does make a difference.
  • Do not leave a caller on hold more than 1 minute without going back to them to let them know you are working on their issue.

Transferring Calls

  • When transferring calls, do not “cold transfer”; make sure that you announce the call to the person you are transferring to. 
  • If you get voicemail when attempting a transfer, go back to the caller and let them know that you will be transferring them to a voicemail. 
  • Always try to make sure you are getting the person to the right person/department, make sure they are getting person/voicemail/acd before you transfer them.


  • Customers, whether internal or external, should have the ability to leave a message when they call a person or department.
  • Voicemail greetings should set expectation on when voicemail will be returned (as a general rule: 1 or 2 business day for individuals, 4 business hours for departments ).
  • Set an out-of-office message on voicemail if you’re going to be gone for longer than 1 day.

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