Porting business telephone numbers can be painful. According to FCC Guidelines on number porting, the process should not take more than 24 hours for simple ports (those with only 1 number). However, this is often not the case for business ports since most businesses have more than one line. With these complex ports, different service providers, carriers, and resellers have different approaches. Some even charge fees for certain documents and the request can take up to 30 days.
The fact is that when it comes to porting business numbers, a lot is riding upon end users, the business owner, and the current service company that is providing invoices. Without going into too much detail, a company’s “Service Provider” may not be the company name appearing on the invoices. The mergers and acquisitions that have occurred throughout the telephone industry over time have created a lot of confusion that can be difficult to navigate. Here are some documents your company can be prepared to provide to port numbers quickly.
First things first, any company wishing to port numbers must be in good standing with their current provider. Never stop paying your current provider as it can jeopardize your right to those numbers. Additionally, one or more most recent copies of the following documents can be required:
- Signed Copy of the Invoice
- Call Service Record or Call Detail Report (CSR/CDR)
- Letter of Authorization
Invoices have to meet certain criteria that can be difficult for small businesses to meet, especially those that have changed hands over the years without updating the information with carriers. The requirements that must be met include that the invoice must be signed by the person on record, which is often the person who started the service. If that person has long since moved on, things can get hairy. Make sure the signature is in a blank place, easy to decipher on the bill. Also, the billing telephone number, all numbers to be ported, customer address and customer account number must be present.
CSR or CDR
Some service providers no longer publish customer numbers on invoices, making them inconclusive for porting. This means a Customer Service Record (CSR) or Call Detail Report (CDR) may be required. Additionally, some providers charge for these reports and access to the report can take up to 30 days to process. These too will need to be signed in a blank place on the report by the person on record and include every number to be ported.
Letter of Authorizations (LOA)
Certain carriers require nothing more than an LOA. If your new service provider asks for it. Sign it. It gives them the right to operate on your behalf legally. An LOA does not mean that the new service provider will not hit brick walls or require the other documents. With the confusion in number ownership, sometimes companies themselves don’t realize they own a batch of numbers because they have fallen under a different branch of the organization.