How-to AWS Tutorial

Porting Your Existing Phone Numbers to Amazon Connect

Migrating to Amazon Connect? Want to keep your existing phone numbers? Here’s your guide to everything you need to know about porting phone numbers to Amazon Connect.

Migrating your existing phone numbers to Amazon Connect can vary in complexity depending on factors such as the location and type of the numbers (Toll-free or DID). The process is already well documented by AWS, who have provided some helpful resources on phone number porting and considerations.

But take it from someone who has helped many companies port their phone numbers from their existing providers to Amazon Connect – there can be some unexpected hang-ups to watch out for along the way. Here’s what you need to know.  

Can I port my phone numbers to Amazon Connect?

Amazon supports a wide geographic span of phone numbers, however requirements and porting availability can vary by country. Before beginning your number porting, check AWS’ regional requirements for porting phone numbers.

How much does it cost to port my phone numbers?

There is no cost from Amazon for the process of porting your phone number, however, the level of response from the AWS team is dependent on your AWS Support plan. Once your phone number has been ported, the standard costs for the number will apply as detailed at https://aws.amazon.com/connect/pricing/.

Note: Your existing carrier may charge fees to port your phone number. You should check this with them before beginning the porting process.

How long does it take to port phone numbers to Amazon Connect?

Generally, Amazon does not commit to a timeline for porting until they have all the information and the number porting process is underway. General guidelines are 2-4 weeks for the US and Canada and 2-6 months for everywhere else, once all porting documentation and information has been received. For more details, visit https://docs.aws.amazon.com/connect/latest/adminguide/how-long-for-number-porting.html

As an interim measure, you may want to consider claiming new numbers on your Amazon Connect instance and forwarding your calls from your current provider to the newly claimed numbers in Amazon Connect until your old numbers are ported. This can serve to maintain your existing customer experience quality and negate the need to advertise new numbers while migrating to Connect. This may result in additional costs for forwarding calls from your existing carrier and for the standard consumption based costs on Amazon Connect, so make sure to factor this in when considering options and timeframes for porting your phone numbers and beginning to use Amazon Connect.

If you want to display your existing phone number(s) when making outbound calls, Amazon Connect can support this. However, you may need to provide proof of ownership for a number that is not yet ported, and geographic restrictions apply, as detailed at https://docs.aws.amazon.com/connect/latest/adminguide/queues-callerid.html.

I’m ready to port my phone numbers. What next?

Before you raise a support ticket to port your phone number(s), you should consider the following:

  • How many carriers and types of phone numbers do you have? You will need to raise a different support request for each type of phone number (Toll-Free (TFN) or DID) and for each carrier. For example, if you have 4 numbers – 1 TFN with carrier A, 1 DID with carrier A, 1 TFN with carrier B, and 1 DID with carrier B – you will need to raise 4 different porting requests. However, if you have 4 DIDs with the same carrier, you can add all under a single request.
  • Have details of the numbers to be ported handy as well as the authorized signatory for your Letter of Authorization (LOA). A Letter of Authorization is a form that Amazon provides when you raise your porting request. You will need to complete this and ensure that a person authorized to make changes and port phone numbers signs the LOA before submission.
  • You will need a bill / invoice from your existing carrier showing the numbers to be ported (account information can be redacted before submission, if preferred).

Raising a Support Ticket for Number Porting

In order to begin the number porting process, you will need to raise a ticket with AWS. Here are my top tips for raising a number porting ticket.

  1. You will need to ensure you have access in your AWS Account to Support. Support is the service in the AWS Console used to raise all support tickets.
  2. Navigate to Support (search for Support in the search bar of the Console for easy access)
  3. Once in Support, select Create Case and you will then be presented with options to raise support tickets.Porting Phone Numbers to Amazon Connect - Create Case
  4. I recommend using Technical Support as your email updates will reflect the subject line of the ticket, however access to Technical Support will be dependent on your AWS Support Plan. Service Limit Increase can be used as easily as Technical Support, however, the subject line of email updates will all have ‘[Case Number] Limit Increase’ as the subject line, whereas Technical Support will use the Subject Line you choose, meaning you can get more detail without going into each case number.
  5. Complete the support details, including the ARN of your instance, making sure to include as much detail as possible and to attach any relevant documentation.Porting Phone Numbers to Amazon Connect - Case Details
  6. When completing the Contact Options section, be sure to add in the email addresses (see image below) of anyone that needs to receive updates on the status of the ticket (if email is your preferred contact option). If you do not include additional email addresses here, the support responses will only be sent to the email associated with the account and may be missed.Porting Phone Numbers to Amazon Connect - Contact Options
  7. Note that all responses will need to be managed via the AWS Support Service so any updates, additional attachments etc. will require access to the console.
  8. If you have an AWS Technical Account Manager (TAM) assigned to your account, include them in updates as they are a helpful point of contact in managing the porting process.

Questions Amazon will ask when you raise your porting request

Once you have raised your porting request support ticket and Amazon has the information they need from the LOA and any supporting information, they will also likely ask for the following:

  • The target date for porting phone numbers. Amazon cannot always commit to the dates, so you will need to work with them on agreeing to a date once everything is in progress. Consider the Amazon guidelines for timeframes when considering your dates.
  • The exact name of the Amazon Connect contact flow the number needs to be linked to on porting. This is to ensure the calls will be routed correctly when the number is ported. Failing to provide this will result in the number being ported but it will not route.

Top Tips

  1. Use your TAM: If you have an Enterprise Support plan with AWS, you should keep your designated Technical Account Manager (TAM) engaged in the process as they can often help unblock delays or clarify details on any additional information required.
  2. Monitor your Porting Date: Once a date and time for porting numbers is agreed on, you will need to ensure you monitor the numbers appearing on your Amazon Connect instance and do the following:
    1. Validate they are linked to the correct Amazon Connect contact flow
    2. Place test calls to ensure they connect
    3. You can also use the Contact Search in Amazon Connect reports to view or filter on the System Phone Number to see calls from the ported number reaching your Connect instance.
  3. Release unwanted numbers: If you claimed additional numbers in Amazon Connect for testing or forwarding calls to while your numbers were being ported, you should release them in order to avoid additional costs for the numbers on your Connect Instance.
  4. Update your Routing Logic: If you have any logic in your Connect flows that routes based on the phone number dialed, you will need to ensure this is set up for your ported phone numbers. This is more common in situations where numbers have been claimed on Amazon Connect temporarily. For example, if the call comes in on Number A, then set it to the Sales Queue and route accordingly; if on Number B, then set to Support Queue and route accordingly. This will depend entirely on how you have set up your Connect Instance and Contact Flows.
  5. Get someone in country to test your TFNs: Testing Toll-Free numbers from out of country may result in a dead tone, even if the number has been ported. Some countries do not support dialing Toll-Free numbers from outside the country, so you may need to get a local team to validate that the Toll-Free number has been ported.
  6. Set your outbound display number dynamically: If you want to display your existing phone number(s) when making outbound calls, Amazon Connect can support this, however you may need to provide proof of ownership for a number that is not yet ported, and geographic restrictions apply. For details, visit https://docs.aws.amazon.com/connect/latest/adminguide/queues-callerid.html

What can cause delays in the number porting process?

  • Incomplete LOAs
  • LOA not signed by an authorized signatory
  • Delays in responding to Amazon requests for additional information such as local addresses, identification requirements, etc. This will vary by region and phone number type for where the number is being ported.

Conclusion

The process for porting your numbers can be seamless, as long as you are prepared with all the necessary information and you’ve checked that you can port your phone numbers ahead of time. When working with the VoiceFoundry team, we will be on hand to guide you through the process and ensure your numbers successfully find their new home on Amazon Connect.