Having worked as an Account Manager in telecoms for years, it has always been a personal bugbear when people put spaces in the middle of phone numbers. My annoyance stems from the amount of time I spend each day deleting said spaces that I have copied and pasted from client emails. I have to do this because our internal systems do not recognise numbers with spaces. 

After discovering that virtually all of my colleagues have the same frustration, I wondered whether I could get away with kindly asking our customers to compose their requests without the use of these tedious invisible irritants? I reckon that I spend around 5-10 minutes each day deleting spaces so if you spread that across the company, that is a few hours that we can add to our combined productivity. Surely this is a reasonable request?

Unfortunately, after further investigation, it turns out that there are actual reasons as to why people put spaces to break up phone numbers (see below) so I have ruled out my first solution.

As Outlook cannot automatically get rid of them (I have checked), I guess my only hope is for our systems to be developed to account for them.

If anyone else has a viable solution, I'm eager to hear it!