Things to Look For In an Answering Service
Virtual receptionists and answering services are the talk of the town these days, as an increasing number of businesses have started to outsource these tasks to professional answering services. Cost savings and customer service specialization are just a few of the major advantages that these services offer.
Since the rapid rise in demand of professional answering services over the past few years, many services have saturated the market. Not all of them are made equal however, and some virtual telephone services might offer more bang for your buck than others. Here are a few things you should look for when deciding on an answering service.
In an ideal world, message taking should be a standard for all call answering services. Supposing you get an important call that you weren’t able to answer, the service would take the message, create a written draft of the conversation and share it with you via email, text message or fax. This allows you to get updated on trivial matters that might require immediate attention. As a value added feature, the draft could be sent to multiple email addresses so that all stakeholders are briefed.
Many businesses specialize in particular domains within their industry. For example, law firms may specialize in corporate, criminal or matrimonial laws. As such, having a customized script that the answering service follows can be of crucial importance in order to maintain customer loyalty as well as giving off a good impression to new clients. A good answering service is aware of your service areas and designs a script that fits all your requirements accordingly.
With increasing globalization, businesses have transcended from serving small regional areas to multinational clients in another corner of the world. Of course, some of these clients may come from differing cultural backgrounds and might not be comfortable conversing in English. Competent answering services understand that, which is why they offer bilingual services to better service the clients. Speaking the same language as the client forms an air of trust between you and the client that results in a better business relationship.
With all the technological advancements in today’s era, it has become essential for answering services to catch up with the times. Some services have started to realize that, which is why they now offer features such as Google Calendar integration. Calendar integration allows for all your scheduled appointments to be synched with the virtual receptionist who can then decide on when to forward the call or place on hold. This service is especially useful for businesses dealing with a large number of clients.
For law firms, some clients may be higher priority in certain situations, such as close to a hearing date. Good answering services let you define those tiers by priority, letting only those calls through first that require immediate attention. The rest of the calls are handled accordingly depending on their priority. With this feature, businesses can generate more leads and divide their time in the most efficient way possible.
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