Direct inward dialing (DID) is a service provided by a dial tone carrier or communication service provider. Typically the carrier allocates a range of telephone numbers that are routed to a company’s existing dial tone in its phone system. DID service allows an outside caller to directly reach an extension (or group of extensions ex. Service dept.) of an office without the assistance of a receptionist or automated attendant by assigning DID numbers to a business. DID numbers have become important in IP communications in connection with SIP trunks and hosted phone systems. To learn more about DID service please click here. There are several advantages to using DID numbers.

Local Presence: Obtaining DID numbers can offer a company the ability to appear to be a part of the local community but yet not have a physical location in the area. Customers typically prefer to conduct business with local vendors because it offers a higher level of comfort; close access, faster service and more accountability. If you use DID numbers, your telephone number is no longer restricted by your geographical location. For example, your business office is in New Jersey but you want to seek clients in New York. You can have your dial tone carrier provide a DID telephone number that is “local” to New York (a 212 area code) and have it forwarded to your PBX system in New Jersey. Potential clients seeing this telephone number advertised will get the impression that you have a local presence in New York. If you have local numbers across multiple locations, you can increase your probability of getting calls for new business.

Cost Savings: There are several cost savings associated with DID numbers. If your business has multiple locations, you can save money by investing in a single phone system, installing it at the main location. Utilizing IP technology and DID numbers, you can install IP phones at the remote locations and have DID numbers local to each location assigned to your dial tone at the main location. This eliminates the cost and maintenance of a PBX at each site and the associated monthly dial tone bills.

Lower labor Expenses: DID service can lower your labor costs by minimizing receptionist duties. If you assign DIDs to every employee, any caller may directly reach their intended party by dialing the DID of the employee, thereby eliminating or minimizing the duties of an operator. Rather than answering every incoming call, the receptionist can be reached only when needed by the incoming caller. This enables the receptionist to attend to other duties during the day.

Efficiency: These days, calls want to reach their intended recipient as fast as possible. Callers do not appreciate being placed on hold, listening to an automated attendant, or going through several option prompts to reach the employee. Many do not know or recall the extension of the employee and get irritated when requested to dial the party’s name, especially if it is the last name. Assigning DIDs to every employee, gives callers quick and direct access to each employee. Hold times will be shortened, caller frustration will be minimized and telephone traffic will be managed more efficiently.

Higher Customer Appreciation: Last but not least, clients tend to feel that they are getting a better level of service when they are able to directly reach an individual. There is a more personal component when you call the employee and not the company.

In summary, businesses are choosing to incorporate DIDs into its communications solution to gain a competitive edge.