I have a confession to make: I haven’t recorded a new voicemail greeting in nearly a decade. Since then, I’ve (hopefully) become more articulate, poised, and self-assured. But hear my voicemail recording, and you’d think I was still new to the work world, a little unsure of myself — and probably not an authority.
Obviously, I need to update it. And if you haven’t changed your voicemail greeting in over a year, you’re likely in the same boat.
After all, a professional voicemail recording boosts your credibility, makes you seem more competent, and encourages whoever’s listening to it to continue the relationship.
A relatively unprofessional one — like mine, for instance — does the opposite: It encourages prospects, recruiters, and potential connections to run in the other direction.
In this post, I’ll share what makes a good voicemail greeting — and the best voicemail greeting scripts you can use.
Tip: If you’re not sure how to leave a good voicemail, check out the most effective voicemail script ever and how to end a voicemail that keeps the sales conversation open.
What to Say in a Voicemail Greeting
Here’s what you should say in a professional voicemail greeting:
- A greeting
- Your name
- Your company
- A simple explanation for missing the call (e.g. you’re away from the phone or are on holiday)
- A rough estimate of when you’ll get back to the person
- An alternative person to reach out to (if you’re out of office)
- An alternative mode of communication (if you prefer email or text)
- A call-to-action such as “Leave a message” or “Send me an email at [email protected]”
That’s the simple structure of a voicemail greeting. Overall, your greeting should be professional, but the wording can vary depending on the situation. Check out a sample below.
Voicemail Greeting Sample
“Hello, you’ve reached [name] at [company]. I’m unable to come to the phone right now. Leave your name and number, and I’ll return your call as soon as I’m free. Thank you.”
Easy, right? And yet why is it so hard?
I’ve got you covered. I’ve compiled some of the best voicemail greetings you can use for virtually any situation you’ll come across.
Work Voicemail Greetings
These work voicemail greetings are for the work phone that you and only you use. They’re highly effective because they help you establish a relationship straight from the voicemail. Or they help you share an important update in a simple, straightforward way.
1. “Hi, you’ve reached [your name] at [your company]. I’m unavailable right now — probably helping [type of company] get [X results, e.g. ‘double their leads in 60 days,’ ‘hire the best and brightest engineers,’ ‘convert 40% more customers.’] Leave your name and number, and we’ll discuss how your company can see similar results.”
2. “Hi, you’ve reached [name] at [company]. If you need a quick response, please shoot me an email at [insert email address] and I’ll be in touch by EOD tomorrow. If it’s not urgent, leave me a message with your name and number. Have a great day.”
3. “Hey, this is [your name]. If you’re calling for [X reason], please [contact so-and-so] or [go to our website, send me an email]. For all other inquiries, leave your name and a brief message and I’ll call you back within [one, two, three] business day[s].”
4. “Hello, you’ve reached [your name and title]. I’m currently out on parental leave until [date]. In the meantime, please direct all phone calls to [alternate contact name] at [phone number] and emails to [email address]. Thanks, and I’ll see you in [month you’ll be back in the office].”
5. “Hello, [Person’s name] is chasing new adventures and is no longer with [Company name]. Please forward all future requests to [New or interim person’s name] at [phone number]. Thank you!”
Short Voicemail Greetings
Your clients don’t have a lot of time, and neither do you. Use the following short voicemail greetings to get to the point quickly and invite them to leave a message.
6. “Hi, this is [your name]. I’m either on a call or away from my desk. Please leave your name, number, and a brief message and I’ll get back to you. Thank you.”
7. “Hello, this is [your name] at [company]. Thanks for calling. Please leave your name, number, and the reason you’d like to chat, and I’ll get back to you ASAP.”
8. “Hi, you’ve reached [your name]. I’m unable to come to the phone right now. But if you leave your name, number, and a short message, I’ll be sure to call back.”
9. “Hey, this is [your name]. Thanks for reaching out. I’m busy at the moment, but if you leave your name, number, and message, I’ll return your call.”
Business Voicemail Greetings
Are you creating a voicemail greeting for your entire company or team? These business voicemail greetings will do the trick.
10. “Hello, you’ve reached [X company]. We can’t take your call right now, but please leave your name, contact information, and reason for reaching out, and one of our team members will be in touch within 24 hours.”
11. “Hi, you’ve reached [company]. Unfortunately, we’re currently unavailable. But we want to talk to you — so please leave your name and number, as well as your reason for calling, and someone will call back ASAP.”
12. “Hi, you’ve reached [company]. We’re available by phone from [hour] to [hour] [time zone] Monday through Friday [optional: and from hour to hour on the weekends]. You can also contact us by going to our website, [URL], and live-chatting or emailing us. If you’d like us to call you back, please leave your name and number after the tone.”
13. “Hello, you’ve reached [company]. If you’re looking for information on [X], please check out our [Facebook page, company website, etc.] If you want to know more about [Y], take a look at [Z page on our site, our YouTube channel, etc.] Still have more questions, or just want to chat with our team? Leave your name and number, and we’ll return your call straight away.”
14. “Hello, you’ve reached the Sales Department at [Company name]. All of our representatives are currently helping clients [insert goal such as, ‘achieve 40% growth through streamlining HR operations’] and are unable to take your call. Please leave your name, company, and phone number and we’ll give you a call back ASAP. Thank you!”
Funny Voicemail Greetings
A word of warning: These greetings will not do you any favors if you’re in the midst of a job hunt or work in a conservative industry. Always remember your target personas. If there’s a chance they won’t appreciate your sense of humor, opt for a straightforward greeting instead.
15. “This is Bond. James Bond. Okay, it’s really [your last name]. [Your first name] [your last name]. I’ll get back to you as soon as I’m done helping M16 save the world — which will probably be tomorrow at the latest. Have a good day.”
16. “Hmm. Gryffindor … No, Ravenclaw. Yes, you definitely belong in Ravenclaw. *Pause.* Okay, you haven’t reached the Sorting Hat — it’s the voicemail of [your name]. Please leave your name and number (and just for fun, the Harry Potter house you think you belong in) and I’ll return your call as soon as possible.”
17. “Hello! You’ve gotten the voicemail of [your name]. Leave your name, contact info, and the answer to the eternal question ‘Which came first, the chicken or the egg?’ Anyone who gets it right will receive a call back.”
Vacation Voicemail Greetings
Out of town? Your callers should know. Let them know with the following vacation voicemail greetings.
18. “Hi, you’ve reached [your name]. I’m away from [date] to [date]. If you need help with [X] before then, please contact [name] at [phone number]. Everyone else, please leave your name and number and I’ll return your call when I return. Thanks and have a great day.”
19. “Hello, you’ve reached [your name]. I’m currently [exploring Asia, hiking through the jungle in Costa Rica, hanging out on the beach in Bermuda] — or more likely, [recovering from extreme jet lag, googling ‘Are red spiders poisonous,’ or looking for SPF 150 sunscreen] and won’t be back in the office until [date]. Leave your contact info and reason for calling and I’ll get in touch then.”
20. “Hey there, this is [your name] from [your company]. I’m out of the office until [date]. In the meantime, please direct your inquiries to [coworker’s name] at [email address]. They can also be reached at [phone number]. Thank you.”
Holiday Voicemail Greetings
No one should be calling during the holidays, and yet some people do. When you’re out for the holidays, create a voicemail greeting that communicates the cheerfulness of the season while still staying professional.
21. “Hello, you’ve reached [your name, the office of X company]. The team is currently out of the office, but we’ll be back on [date] stuffed with good food and eager to speak with you. Leave your name, number, and — if you’re so inclined — your favorite [holiday dish, Thanksgiving tradition, etc.]”
22. “Hi, you’ve reached [your name, the office of X company]. We’re closed until [date]. Please leave your name and phone number and someone will return your call ASAP. Have a great [New Year’s, Fourth of July, etc.].”
23. “Happy holidays! [I’m, the team at X company is] away until [date]. We’ll make sure to call you back straight away when we return. If your request is urgent, email [emergency contact] at [email address]. Thanks, and have a wonderful day.”
24. “Thank you for calling [company]. We’re closed for [holiday] from [date] until [date]. Please leave your message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. Have a happy holiday season!”
25. “Hello! Thanks for reaching out to [company]. We’re closed today for the holiday, and will reopen tomorrow. If you leave your name, number, and a brief message, we’ll give you a call when we’re back in the office. Thanks again, and have a great day.”
Create a Professional Voicemail Greeting that Keeps the Conversation Going
Creating a voicemail greeting might not be fun, but with the scripts I’ve shared, you should have an easier time. No need to practice time and time again — simply plug in your name, company title, and other details, then read it out loud to your phone’s voicemail greeting recorder. With a professional greeting, you’ll continue nurturing prospects even if you don’t pick up the phone.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in February 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.