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A proper voicemail greeting can make a positive impression on your callers or it can alienate them before you even speak to them. Put yourself in your caller’s place and ask yourself “How would I want to be treated if I couldn’t immediately talk to the person that I called? What would I want to know from the voicemail greeting? What should I do?”

Depending upon the phone system you have at your office or company, there may be different options for the type of voicemail greetings you are allowed to compose. These include:

  • General Voicemail Greeting

This is used as a default greeting if no other greeting type is set-up

  • Internal Voicemail Greeting

This is used to greet people who call you from within your own company

  • External Voicemail Greeting

This greeting will be played for people who call from outside the company. Your telephone’s system automated attendant may play a general company greeting that all external callers will hear. If your company’s name is mentioned in that greeting, you do not need to say it again in your greeting.

  • Temporary or “Out of Office”

The temporary or out of the office voicemail greeting is set when you will be out of the office for a predetermined amount of time. Most voicemail systems will allow you to set an expiration date and time so you don’t have to remember to turn it off when you return.

  • On the Phone (Busy)

This greeting is used to inform callers that you are in the office but you can’t take their call right now because you are on the phone with another caller.

Basic Elements of Good Voicemail Greeting

  • Greeting
  • Your Name
  • Your Company Name and Department Name
  • Statement that you cannot take their call right now
  • Invitation to leave a message
  • When they can expect a return call
  • Who they can contact for immediate assistance (if applicable)
  • No longer than 20-25 seconds (good rule of thumb)
  • Avoid giving out too much information and making an overly long greeting

Sample Good Voicemail Greetings

  • Hi! This is Tom Turner at TTCS Solutions. I can’t take your call right now, but I would like to return it as soon as I can. So, please leave me a detailed confidential message after the tone. If you need immediate assistance, please call my assistant, Sharon Smith at extension 3333. Thanks for your call!
  • Hello! You have reached Justin Porras from TTCS Solutions. I will be out of the office until Thursday, July 24th and I will be checking my voicemail occasionally. If you would like to leave me a message please do so after the tone and I will return your call as soon as I can. If you need immediate assistance, please call my admin a, Susan Taylor at 703-444-4444. Thanks for your call.
  • Hello! You have reached the Accounting department. The department is currently closed. Our normal hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 8AM until 5PM. Please leave us a message after the tone and somebody will return your call as soon as possible. Thank you.

Bad Voicemail Greeting

  • Hi! This is Joe. Leave me a message.
  • (Music playing for extended period of time) Hey! Talk to me.
  • Hi! You have reached the XYZ Company. Please leave us a message.
  • Hello! You have reached the office of Joe Smith at XYZ Company. I will be out of the office having surgery and will return on Thursday, August 25th at 8AM. I will be in some pain so I will not be checking my voicemail at all. If you would like to leave me a message do so after the tone. Yu can leave a detailed and confidential message and I will return your call as soon as I can. If you need immediate assistance, please call my secretary, Sally Johnson at ext. 1212. Thank you for your call and I will get back to you when I return and I am feeling better.
  • The office is closed. Please leave a message after the tone.
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