cloud phone  •  Calling and Mobility

Call forwarding

Forward phone calls with ease and never miss a call again.

Call forwarding as part of RingEX™

Enjoy advanced call forwarding as part of your RingEX. With call forwarding, you can route inbound business calls to all your devices anytime, anywhere. 
RingCentral lets you customize your call forwarding features to handle all incoming calls. Whether you want them to ring sequentially or simultaneously, route calls based on criteria, or even send them to voicemail, RingEX can help your business be available twenty-four-seven.
Strengthen your staff’s availability with RingCentral. Discover how our VoIP phone system's call forwarding feature works.
Take your business anywhere
Business calls are essential to keep your company's operations going. For productivity's sake, everyone wants an instant response whenever they decide to call a specific person or a department that can cater to their concern. But with so much going on, some calls are missed and unanswered. 
Every missed call is also a missed opportunity–for both caller and receiver–especially if it involves a client who decided to contact another brand just because you could not answer on time. 
How can you turn this around? The answer is within your RingEX phone system.
Via its call forwarding service, you can minimize or even avoid lost opportunities because you could not pick up on time. Now, even if you're on out of the office, there's a system in place to handle calls coming to your number.
Call forwarding is a business phone system feature that allows you to route incoming and unanswered calls to another number. Whether you're out of the office, or it's after hours so no one can physically pick up, or just when you're on vacation, a call forwarding service can help you to still cater to inbound calls and reroute them to another number.
Since call forwarding is just an aspect of an effective business phone system, it pays to check out good VoIP phone services and communications platforms with a call forwarding service included in their offer.
These are the following criteria you need to consider in choosing the appropriate call forwarding solution for your business:
  • Automatically forward phone calls to any phone number, such as your office, home, or even a personal mobile number, to ensure your calls always get answered.
  • Forward calls to any extension, phone number, group, or department simultaneously or sequentially.
  • You can specify the number of times each phone rings before the calls get forwarded to the assigned telephone number.
A call center unit uses the RingCentral app to manage their calls

What is Call Forwarding?

Call forwarding is a popular business phone system feature that redirects incoming calls to an alternative phone number on a given condition, such as after business hours, on vacation, or when engaged on another call. 
Widely used in call centers to cater to business calls and other inquiries, employees turn on their forwarding service, so all incoming calls get answered and can is automatically redirected to a colleague's office phone. 
Advanced VoIP phone systems can allow you to configure its various call forwarding settings to best suit your needs. For instance, your calls may be automatically forwarded if you don't hear a dial tone, if there's a busy signal, or if the call comes from a different area code. 

The Benefits of Call Forwarding (What does call forwarding do?)

Eliminate missed calls and ensure all calls are answered

Don't lose another client to a busy phone line anymore. With a call forwarding service, you can redirect calls to a colleague or your personal business phone number. This way, you can cater to the needs of your clients, and close more sales, even if you're not at your office desk. 
A diagram of how clients can experience how RingCentral Call forwarding works

Offer a better caller experience

Easily forward any incoming call to an extension, business phone number, or even your phone number, so you don't keep your callers waiting. When you're not available to pick up the call, you can transfer the call to your colleague or assistant and ensure that each call is answered and served.

A screenshot of a call happening in a RingCentral app on a mobile phone

Makes it easy for employees to travel

Travel is part of work for most employees. However, calls can still come even while you're driving, while on a plane, or even during a commute. That's why a call forwarding service is relevant. Even if you have incoming calls, you can configure your call forwarding settings to redirect them to your mobile phone or to a colleague, so you can travel with ease without worrying about missed calls.

A woman taking a phone call from her mobile phone

Gives small businesses an opportunity to scale

When you have a VoIP system with an efficient call forwarding system, you make your business become more professional and ready to scale for growth. You can accommodate more inquiries, and you can even configure your call forwarding settings, such as screening by caller ID, from business hours or the number of rings before it will be redirected. 
Call center agents waiting for their call assignment

Have better after-hours coverage

Not all businesses can operate non-stop. At some point, there are after-hours for businesses. But not with your call management platform with a call forwarding service. You can program a call routing rule wherein you can redirect callers to voicemail or to your personal mobile phone number.
A female writes down a note from a caller

Call Forwarding Options: How to Use Call Forwarding

Call forwarding can be used in many instances. It helps manage your incoming calls, and instead of missing calls, you can configure your settings to redirect them to a colleague or to voicemail so you can respond to them later. The following are call-forwarding options you can use to better manage your incoming calls.

Always Call Forward

Always forward your calls, no matter the instance.

Selective Call Forwarding

Customize your call forwarding settings to suit your need.

Call Forward When Busy

Automatically forward calls as soon as callers hear the busy signal.

Call Forwarding When Unanswered

Transfer calls when callers receive no answer after a couple of rings.

Advanced Call Forwarding

Configure your call forwarding settings for your business calls.

Call Forward When Unreachable

Forwarding calls to a new number when your telephone number is unavailable.

Why Choose RingCentral as Your Call Forwarding Service

Not all business phone solutions are created equal. Some offer the essentials, even just a change of hold music. But there are advanced communications platforms that can help you with both basic call forwarding options and complete call forwarding features activation. These features include advanced call forwarding services such as configuring custom call forwarding settings (based on caller ID and area code), call waiting, and other call forwarding features in a single mobile app, whether iPhone or Android phones.

All-in-one cloud communications

RingCentral isn't just an ordinary business phone system; it's an all-in-one cloud communications platform that caters to all your business calls, business text, video, fax, voicemail, and more.
A male using his laptop and mobile to work from home

Easy Management

Manage your calls via the RingCentral App on your mobile device, desktop, laptop, or desk phone, anytime, anywhere.

The RingCentral app opened on a desktop, laptop, mobile phone and conference phone.

Advanced Virtual Phone System Features

RingCentral leverages virtual PBX technology–auto attendant, advanced call routing, and virtual extensions, minus the need to for expensive hardware.

The RingCentral app opened on a desktop, laptop, mobile phone and conference phone.

International Phone Services

True to our promise of helping you grow, RingCentral enables you to make calls internationally. We offer extensive coverage to over 45 countries and inbound virtual numbers in 105+ countries, so you don't have to install separate business phone systems to cater to complicated international calling and phone numbers.
a web illustration of international callers handled by the RingCentral app

Analytics & Reporting

For ultimate productivity, you can gain in-depth insights about your calls via the RingCentral advanced administrative and analytics tools. You can customize your dashboards, generate reports, and apply instant troubleshooting to avoid repeat steps that may hinder the efficiency of your phone system.
A screenshot of the RingCentral app Analytics dashboard

Call forwarding FAQs

To set up call forwarding, you can use an administrator or a user account. For an admin account, you need to sign in to your RingCentral account, access your profile for the navigation path in the Admin Portal, navigate to Users > Manage Users, select the extension to configure, then Call Forwarding and Voicemail. Meanwhile, for a user account, go to Settings, then Call Forwarding and Voicemail. 

Work Hours

For this feature, you can set up how you'd like to answer calls during work hours for Incoming Calls. You can also rearrange which business phone number to receive the call first and form your own Ring Group. You can set them up in two: ring in order or ring at once. For ring in order, the system will forward the calls to the numbers to your preferred order, as you can have as many as ten numbers to forward your calls to. On the other hand, for the ring at once, you can forward all incoming calls to all assigned numbers simultaneously. 

After Hours

With RingCentral, you can configure a different way on how your call forwarding service can handle after-office hours. To configure, visit "Setting up your call forwarding for after work hours" so you can access the controls.

Custom Rules

Because we understand there are specific instances where you need to make a special rule, here comes Custom Rules. You can use this when you have a one-time unique arrangement, which will be activated each time that requirement occurs. To activate, check out "Configuring your custom Answering Rules" for more information.


You could configure Settings and make your Incoming Call Information to provide details about the received inbound call, even if it was forwarded to a user extension. But if you want to activate the transfer of a live call from phone to phone without any interruption to the call, head to the Call Flip settings.

Sign up for a demo to get a detailed walkthrough on how to set up your call forwarding today.

If needed, you can add up to 10 forwarding numbers for each extension assigned. You can also configure for these numbers to ring sequentially (Ring in order)  or simultaneously (Ring at once).

As RingCentral can be easily accessed via your phone app, you can change the settings at any time using your smartphone, tablet, or computer. You can set up and change your own phone number's call forwarding rules or for entire departments in just a few clicks. Users can also configure individual forwarding rules to suit their work habits and schedules. For example, you can temporarily bypass your regular settings to forward your calls to a new number and then select your previous settings to switch back during holidays, vacations, or special events.

There can be two ways how callers experience a call forward. When activated, the Auto-Receptionist will ask the caller to state their name so that the receiver can hear the caller's name first. Otherwise, the general set-up callers will hear the company greeting or, for direct numbers, the individual's greeting. Then the RingCentral Auto-Receptionist will ask callers to hold while the call is connected.

Yes, you can. To forward calls to an external number, you need to log in to your account, go to the Work Hours Tab, and click the "Add Number or Coworker" under the Name column. Input the desired number or coworker to forward the calls, click the toggle on, and click save.

Yes. Call forwarding lets you send calls to any international number using RingCentral's low international rates. We offer unified and secure cloud communications solutions with global PBX services in most countries, including international phone numbers in over 100 countries. This is budget-friendly regional and international calling plans and service localization in 18 languages.

Call forwarding and simultaneous ring are connected in terms of function but not synonymous. Call forwarding is a feature of call management where incoming calls are forwarded to a specific number or department once the receiver of the incoming call is unavailable. On the other hand, a simultaneous ring is a type of call forwarding, wherein if inbound calls are flocking a phone number and can't be answered by the receiver, then it's directed to other phone numbers assigned to handle the influx of calls, all at the same time. With RingCentral, the simultaneous ring function is called "Ring all at once."

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