New research into the use of mobile vs landline numbers has revealed that 77% of freelancers and business owners use their personal mobiles for business.
A further 19% admit to doing so too, but only within the first few months or year of starting up their business. Only 4% set up a work landline when becoming self-employed.
The findings also showed that more women use their personal mobile numbers for work than men, with 5% more females choosing to do this than males.
Outsourced communications provider Moneypenny, who conducted the research, polled UK business owners and freelancers to find out their habits when it comes to using personal mobiles for work or setting up a landline.
Of those surveyed who said they use personal mobiles for business (77%), almost all also admitted that they have found themselves in a situation where they were unable to answer a call (93%).
For over 40%, this is at least a weekly occurrence. Seventeen per cent admit they find themselves in such a situation at least twice a week, 13% three times a week and 7% more than five times a week.
Furthermore, over half of those who use their personal mobile number for business have been asked to provide a landline number and have had to explain that they don’t have one.
Three in 5 younger business owners (aged 18 and 44) have experienced this, whereas only 1 in 5 of those aged 45-plus have.
The survey also focused on the way business owners and freelancers answer their phone, especially if using personal mobiles.
Some 31% admit to answering their phone without stating their business name.
Interestingly, the younger a self-employed person is, the more likely they are to change the way they answer the phone to sound more professional. Eighty-two per cent of 18 to 24 year olds surveyed will make a conscious effort to answer the phone in a professional way. However, just 16% of those aged 45 and over do the same.
Young business owners and freelancers also are more likely to set up a voicemail greeting that mentions the name of their business. But overall, 39% of self-employed admit they have not changed their voicemail settings.
Almost half (48%) of those using a personal mobile for work say that a friend or family member has answered their phone to a customer or potential customer.
Creating a healthy barrier between professional and personal lives
Seventy-one per cent of those who have a landline number agree that having a separate business number creates a healthier barrier between their personal and professional life.
Joanna Swash, Global CEO of Moneypenny, said:
“Whether you choose to have a landline number or not, the most important factor is the way you manage and conduct your calls.
“Answering the phone in a positive, polite and friendly manner will make the biggest impact on your customers and potential customers. Always state your name and the name of your business when answering calls and if you say you’ll ring back, be sure to do so.”