Most answering service customers forward their phone lines during certain times to a designated line provided by the answering service. In many cases this is a manual process where the customer dials *72 or #72 (depending on the carrier) and then the call forwarding number in order to send the calls to the answering service. If someone forgets to manually forward the phone then the calls do not go to the answering service but ring unanswered in the customer’s office. Contrary to what many people believe, nothing is done on the answering service side when the calls are forwarded (no buttons are pushed, no switches are flipped on the answering service side). So if the office staff forgets to forward for some reason (for example: the office closed early due to weather, a new employee forgets to forward, etc) very often there is a panicked call to the answering service from an office person saying, “Can you please put my phones on forwarding so I don’t have to go back to the office and do it?” Unfortunately there is nothing that can be done if the customer has regular call forwarding.
However, for a few dollars a month ultra call forwarding can be purchased from most carriers (Verizon, Paetec, etc). Ultra call forwarding allows the customer or answering service (if the codes are provided) to forward the office lines from anywhere at anytime. Most answering service customers do not know about it and do not have ultra call forwarding. Ultra call forwarding can save a lot of time, gas and worry even if it is only used a few times a year. Check with your carrier regarding availability.