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Today’s consumers have high expectations when it comes to customer service. They have options, and they know it. They’re quick to switch providers at the smallest of slights. Therefore, providing excellent communication services to them is of utmost importance.
While you can provide advanced phone training for your own staff to make sure they handle phone calls properly and meet your customers’ expectations, you probably have better things to do with your time and money. A wiser solution may be to outsource these critical calls to a telephone answering service that specializes in high-quality service.
Here are some of the things you can expect from a professional answering service:
Follow Best Practices: The expectations of customers continually increase. What was a state-of-the-art practice last year, may no longer be the case this year. At one time simply answering the phone was all callers hoped for. Now they assume you will, so you better do it right. Customers expect a person will answer their call, quickly understand their concern, and provide an accurate response. Anything less represents failure.
Today’s professional answering service tracks ever-changing best-practices and implements them. Their clients benefit.
Provide Consistency: An oft-overlooked element of providing excellence to callers is consistency. Inconsistent service comes across as substandard service, and drives customers away. For example, assume Susie answers a call quickly, addresses the caller’s concern, and leaves them feeling pleased. However, Bart answers the phone with a brusque voice, make snide comments, and angers callers. Customers will only remember Bart’s poor service and forget Susie’s excellent service.
One key of a professional answering service is consistency. Regardless of who answers your phone calls, the answering service trains their employees to provide consistent service every time.
Act Professional: Today consumers expect professional interaction over the phone when they call. Rarely does a casual or homey demeanor gain support and merit appreciation.
Answering services excel at professionalism. They provide their staff with weeks of training that cover call center basics to advanced communication skills. Your customers benefit.
Serve With a Smile: A smile makes all the difference. Try it on your next phone call. You will be more engaged, produce a nicer tone, and be more likely to leave the caller feeling pleased.
Professional answering services handle all calls with a smile. It’s what they do.
Cover 24/7: Answering services are available around the clock to take calls from your customers. This relieves you from needing to staff phone personnel for three shifts a day, seven days a week.
While answering services can do this efficiently, you can’t. Answering services aggregate the calls of all their clients to produce an optimal staff schedule, but it’s likely your business will never have enough after-hours traffic to make this feasible.
Conclusion: Professional answering services can do all of this, and more, when they handle your calls. Providing excellence to your customers, often beyond what you could offer with your own staff, is one key reason to outsource your calls to a telephone answering service.
Richard L. Hutcherson is the director of operations for Answering Service One, a new kind of answering service that wants to become your number one resource to handle your communication needs. Contact Richard at 865-505-0456.
Peter Lyle DeHaan is a freelance writer from Southwest Michigan.