How to Reduce Cold Call Nuisance

Every business gets unwanted sales calls; it’s an unfortunate part of workplace life these days and distracting when we are in the middle of important projects. Despite increasing regulation around our personal and business data (or perhaps because of this), sales callers are becoming more persistent and more ingenious in their attempts to get through to us. How can you make these calls go away?

 1. Get registered on TPS online

This free service allows you to register yourself on a database. Once you’re registered, after just 28 days, telemarketers are legally bound not to call you and you can complain if they infringe your right to privacy. In the interim, whilst they process your request, calls should reduce. Corporate TPS works in essentially the same way if you give certain company numbers you do not want to be rung by telemarketers. Of course, a few callers will slip through the net, but any major telemarketing company should be following the rules under threat of a large fine, so you will see numbers of these calls drastically reduced.  

 Note, however, that TPS does not cover text messages, calls from abroad, market research or any communications you may have opted in to.

 2. Go Ex-directory

This one was around in the ‘80s but still holds good today! Get your number removed from telephone directories- paper ones as well as online versions. With wholesale data being so expensive to buy in, many smaller companies will use directories as a cheaper shortcut to getting hold of your details. 

 3. Hire an amazing gatekeeper

Your Receptionist or telephone answering service should act as your best friend in keeping the worst nuisance callers at bay. Leave them strict instructions about what calls they should put through to you and which ones to get rid of! Train them to identify callers by name, company and if possible their relationship to you (regular client, supplier, met you recently at an exhibition etc). 

 Telephone answering service providers can be very good at this job as they are the ultimate experts in call management and accustomed to fielding calls for many different companies. In their line of work, they’ve heard it all!

 4. Companies: Tick opt-out boxes

Data protection laws are often quoted but not always fully understood. Companies cannot make unsolicited calls to you. You might be surprised to know this applies whether or not you are a customer of theirs already. You can avoid being pestered by ticking any relevant boxes prohibiting calls for marketing purposes or your number being passed to third parties

Be especially careful when signing up for any new services, as this tends to trigger a process of data-sharing. If there are no boxes to tick, you still have the right to instruct them directly not to pass on your data or call you unnecessarily and they have the obligation to comply. 

 5. Companies: Complain! 

Report any unwanted sales calls and ask to be removed from their call lists. A verbal request is enough in theory but often ignored, either deliberately or by the call operative not being bothered to log your request. It is better to put it into writing and email it, so you have definitive proof that you raised the issue. Sadly, you will often need to report calls several times to get any action. 

 6. Contact Ofcom for silent or nuisance calls

If you would classify your calls as nuisance calls- for example, silent calls or unpleasant in some other way, report them to Ofcom. These are less likely to be a problem for businesses than for individuals, but small businesses can attract grievances from debtors or ex-employees than manifest themselves in an unsettling way. Of course, if you feel these are sufficiently troubling, you need to contact the police. Ofcom can also deal with the type of recorded call that rings you and launches a message stating that no one was available to take your call. 

Remember to call 1471 to make a note of the number that called you, and the time of the call, so you can use this in communications with Ofcom.

7.  Contact the ICO for pre-recorded messages and texts

Unsolicited marketing texts, pre-recorded messages or faxes are dealt with by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Report these to them so they can take action.

8. Use a call-blocking service

If you have a very low tolerance of unsolicited calls and particularly if you have no Receptionist, you may prefer to buy a product that screens the calls you receive. Look at dedicated devices such as TrueCall or CPR Call Blockerthese plugs directly into your home phone and let you add or delete numbers you would rather not receive calls from. Another option is to invest in BT’s 6500 cordless home phone which bars call from international numbers, withheld numbers and any numbers without a caller ID, plus up to 10 numbers that you nominate yourself. Be aware, though, that some relevant business calls may not reach you if you restrict your calls too carefully, and so we would not advise this path for businesses that depend on sales enquiries

Another uphill struggle we hope we‘ve helped with!

If you need help screening your calls, our telephone answering staff are the best in the business. For more information visit:

 Contact us or speak to us in person by calling 0118 9778599. Let us know how we answered and if we could do it more regularly for you!

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