Telephone English

Useful phrases: Formal telephone conversations

Answering the phone:

Good morning / afternoon / evening, Anderson Steel Company, Ally McPerson speaking. / This is ... speaking / How can I help you?/ Could you speak up, please?/ Who's speaking, please?/ Am I speaking to ...?/ Could you spell that please?/ Who would you like to talk to sir / madam?/ One moment please, I'll see if Mr Fowler is available. / I’ll put you through to extension 37.


Asking for someone:

I'd like to speak to ... please / Could I speak to someone who ... / Could you put me through to Mr Fowler, please?/ Could you please give me her extension number?/ I'm calling about ... / I'm phoning to tell you ... / Could you give her a message, please?/ Let me just repeat that. / Thanks very much for your help.


Problems:

I'm sorry, I don't understand. / I cannot hear you very well. / You must have dialled the wrong number. / I've tried to get through several times, but it's always engaged.


Putting someone through:

I'll put you through to ... / I'll connect you to ... / I'll put ... on the line. / I'm sorry, there's no reply from Mr Fowler.


Putting someone on hold:

Just a moment, please. / Hold on, please. / Hold the line, please.


Asking someone to call back:

Thank you for waiting. I'm afraid Mr Fowler is not in at the moment. / I'm sorry, Mr Fowler is in a meeting. / Can / Could you call back later today?


Taking a message:

Can I take a message?/ Would you like to leave a message?/ Can I give him / her a message?/ I'll tell Mr Fowler that you called. / I'll make sure Mr Fowler rings you as soon as possible. / At what number can you be reached?


Ending a phone call:

Goodbye / Bye (informal)