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Topic # 57493 15-Feb-2010 15:52
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Not sure if I'll find advice to this here, but I really get the impression that our vodafone business rep is making this sound a whole lot simpler than it really is, and have no idea who else to ask.

Basically our company has changed hands, and my new employers are alot more streamlined than my previous ones.

They have requested that I ring Vodafone and give permission to transfer my personal (and only) account and number into the company's name. The reasoning being free calls between company numbers, and I would say a wee tax incentive.

The reason why they want to do this instead of giving me a new number is that I have always used my personal mobile for work (I hardly use it for work), and the number is printed on some 6000 business cards.

So my queries, which the account manager say are "Sweet as" are:
1. If I leave the company, how easy is the process of getting my number back?
2. I will be in the market for a smart phone this year, and possibly the contract that goes with it. Could I be limited to this should my employer not like the idea?

I dunno if I'm being a bit over protective about it. But this is the number I've had for 4 years. And the only number that many of my family and friends have.

Ta
Aaron

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  Reply # 299130 15-Feb-2010 15:55
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Its not that simple there is paper work

The transfer of the connection its self is very simple in the system

You need to do a transfer of title

John

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  Reply # 299133 15-Feb-2010 16:02
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and leaving the company and keeping the number is up to the company

Get something signed that you can take it when you leave

John

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 299137 15-Feb-2010 16:05
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Once you transfer the number to your company, it's theirs. You want a new handset and resign a contract to get a discount? Too bad, it's theirs and if they don't want to resign you have no option. You want to leave the company and want to have the phone number back? Too bad if they don't want to pay any early termination fees that might apply.

Get a new phone and account - theirs and keep your personal number yours.




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  Reply # 299142 15-Feb-2010 16:27

As has been said, once you sign over ownership of your mobile number it becomes the property of your company.

If you're happy with that, it's a straightforward process but (BUT) you must be aware that you have no rights to that number should you leave.

Most companies are more than happy to give you back your number, but we have had the occasional problem where companies have declined to do that/required the customer to pay any ETCs on the account/kept the hardware etc.

The rep is quite right - it is an easy and straightforward process if that's what you want to do.

Cheers

Paul




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http://forum.vodafone.co.nz


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  Reply # 299160 15-Feb-2010 17:54
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PaulBrislen: Most companies are more than happy to give you back your number, but we have had the occasional problem where companies have declined to do that/required the customer to pay any ETCs on the account/kept the hardware etc.



Paul,


When I transferred my phone number to my employer I was lead to believe that I could terminate my employment and take my phone number with me before the end of our three year term contract provided that the company honour the remaining balance of the three year contract with a new phone number assigned. However it appears to be very difficult to get absolute confirmation that this is indeed correct.


I understand that the company needs to formally consent to giving my phone number back to me, but I'm confident that they will have no reservations in doing that provided that they can be reassured that they are not going to be left with any hefty early termination charges. 

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  Reply # 299177 15-Feb-2010 19:03
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freitasm: Once you transfer the number to your company, it's theirs. You want a new handset and resign a contract to get a discount? Too bad, it's theirs and if they don't want to resign you have no option. You want to leave the company and want to have the phone number back? Too bad if they don't want to pay any early termination fees that might apply.

Get a new phone and account - theirs and keep your personal number yours.


100% agree with this above... you never know how things will work out, so either get a signed contract from your employer that says you will keep the number if you quit or are made redundant etc OR get a new work number and keep your personal number youself.

Companies have a vested interest in keeping cell phone numbers especially if you have any involvement in sales.

It gives companies nightmares that their clients might call your number directly after you've moved to work for a competitor.. and with good reason!

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  Reply # 299194 15-Feb-2010 19:44

alasta:
PaulBrislen: Most companies are more than happy to give you back your number, but we have had the occasional problem where companies have declined to do that/required the customer to pay any ETCs on the account/kept the hardware etc.



Paul,


When I transferred my phone number to my employer I was lead to believe that I could terminate my employment and take my phone number with me before the end of our three year term contract provided that the company honour the remaining balance of the three year contract with a new phone number assigned. However it appears to be very difficult to get absolute confirmation that this is indeed correct.


I understand that the company needs to formally consent to giving my phone number back to me, but I'm confident that they will have no reservations in doing that provided that they can be reassured that they are not going to be left with any hefty early termination charges. 


The simple matter of it is that whoever owns the number gets to make the call. You've handed ownership of that number to your employer - whether you've made an agreement with the employer as to what happens on termination is entirely up to you and them...

Typically what happens is the employee who is leaving mid-way through a contract period either picks up the ETCs (if they're dumping the account, for example, but want to keep the number) or transfers the existing contract over to their name and carries on paying.

So long as you're worked out with the employer ahead of time, you should be fine. I'd get it in writing or at least a strong verbal assurance from them because, at the end of the day, if things go pear-shaped, you'll be wanting your number back with as few hassles as possible.

Cheers

Paul




Paul Brislen
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http://forum.vodafone.co.nz




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  Reply # 299201 15-Feb-2010 19:53
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Thanks everyone.

Your feedback confirms what I was thinking. Not so much a potential problem with VF (or whatever carrier) but more a reliance and trust with the employer.

"It gives companies nightmares that their clients might call your number directly after you've moved to work for a competitor.. and with good reason!"

Pretty much sums it up. I see a pretty bright future with my employers, but who knows what could happen?

I've decided to keep things simple and thank my employer for the offer, but humbly decline.

Cheers again guys
Aaron


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  Reply # 299209 15-Feb-2010 19:59
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PaulBrislen: The simple matter of it is that whoever owns the number gets to make the call. You've handed ownership of that number to your employer - whether you've made an agreement with the employer as to what happens on termination is entirely up to you and them... 



Yes, I entirely understand this but I was intending to pose my question under the assumption that the employer is happy and wiling to formally surrender the phone number to the departing employee.




Typically what happens is the employee who is leaving mid-way through a contract period either picks up the ETCs (if they're dumping the account, for example, but want to keep the number) or transfers the existing contract over to their name and carries on paying.



Your "typically what happens" comment really emphasises the murkiness around this issue. If the employer were to approach Vodafone and say "there's 18 months left to run on this contract and we're going to give the departing employee their phone number back so we'll need you to assign us a new number so that we can see out that 18 months without getting hit with an ETC" then would Vodafone cooperate with that request or not? It seems to be very difficult to get a straight answer to this.


In my particular case it might not necessarily be a problem for me personally to take over the balance of the contract, but with me being an individual and the plan being a business one I wonder if that would actually be possible.

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  Reply # 299295 15-Feb-2010 21:19
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its not always easy getting the number back after it has been handed over to a company. a friend signed a form to get her number back but she was only allowed to transfer it from company X to a personal pre-pay plan, or personal on account plan. this was because of some agreement between company x and vodafone. once the phone got cut over to pre-pay, we were then told that it then couldnt be re-assigned to another company - company Y - because vodafone wasnt able to move it from prepay to on account. perhaps this is possible now, but it certainly messed everything up back then. we ended up moving it to another network!




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  Reply # 299305 15-Feb-2010 21:37

@alasta there shouldn't be any murkiness in that it's very simple: your employer will own "your" number and what happens to it is entirely up to them.

You can't transfer an account to another individual - they start a new account (albeit with the same number) and the old account must first be closed out. So if there's time left on the contract or ETCs left owing, that's up to you and your employer to sort out. Also, the company contract may well be unavailable to an individual so you could end up with a number that's available to you, but on terms you're unwilling to take.

This can lead to quite a lot of frustration.

Definitely something to think about carefully before handing over the number.

Cheers

Paul




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  Reply # 299320 15-Feb-2010 21:55
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alasta:

Typically what happens is the employee who is leaving mid-way through a contract period either picks up the ETCs (if they're dumping the account, for example, but want to keep the number) or transfers the existing contract over to their name and carries on paying.



Your "typically what happens" comment really emphasises the murkiness around this issue. If the employer were to approach Vodafone and say "there's 18 months left to run on this contract and we're going to give the departing employee their phone number back so we'll need you to assign us a new number so that we can see out that 18 months without getting hit with an ETC" then would Vodafone cooperate with that request or not? It seems to be very difficult to get a straight answer to this.


In my particular case it might not necessarily be a problem for me personally to take over the balance of the contract, but with me being an individual and the plan being a business one I wonder if that would actually be possible.


I think this is pretty typical of Vodafone.  I have been able to achieve this on Telecom however Vodafone's provisioning system seems to be pretty much locked into Phone Number & Account for on Account's.

I tried the same thing 6 months ago when I had a phone under a 24 month contract, wanted to transfer the existing plan onto my wives phone number.  It just "couldn't be done" as per the many conversations i had with numerous Vodafone folks.  In the end it was cheaper and easier to port both numbers over to 2Degrees and take the hit Termination fees.  Never looked back myself.

Telecom on the otherhand seemed able to do it, as the account and phone numbers seem to be able to spin independently.  As I was able to take my old number which was on Telecom over to Vodafone and not have an Termination fee being applied to my old employers Telecom account, as long as we transferred a new number onto the handset.

Otherwise if you know the Vodafone account number its moving to for your employer, then just port the number out to 2Degrees or Telecom as that is more often far easier to do than trying to move the number onto another account while on Vodafone, and then the ETC's aren't your problem ;).  With 2Degrees it can all be done online, so if you have the account number you're sweet ;)





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  Reply # 299332 15-Feb-2010 22:08
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Don't do it. Even if you've got an aggreement in writing if the company changes it's mind you won't have any recourse short of going to court. I've seen a few people get caught like this and it never ends well, especially if you have a sales role.

No company in it's right mind ever lets someone leave with their number, especially if they're going to a competitor. In fact a lot of companies have specific policies not allowing employess to take numbers with them.

There are always ways that this can go wrong - eg the company changes hands and the new owner doesn't let you keep the number, it's a corporate and the new policy leaves you screwed etc.

If they want you to have a mobile they should either provide you with one or pay for yours via an expense claim.

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  Reply # 299336 15-Feb-2010 22:14
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BarTender: Otherwise if you know the Vodafone account number its moving to for your employer, then just port the number out to 2Degrees or Telecom as that is more often far easier to do than trying to move the number onto another account while on Vodafone, and then the ETC's aren't your problem ;).  With 2Degrees it can all be done online, so if you have the account number you're sweet ;)



Now there's a can of worms. Does the 'owner' of a phone number have to provide formal consent in order for it to be ported out to a different provider? If not then what's to stop someone from porting a phone number between providers in order to take possession of a number that they have no right to?

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  Reply # 299340 15-Feb-2010 22:18
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You have to sign a form (with Vodafone and Telecom) and provide a photo ID.




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