A key to business success is knowing what aspects of operations you should take on, and which ones might be best delegated elsewhere. Many companies decide to hire an answering service to take care of certain administrative tasks, which frees resources to focus on other things like growing their business.
What Does an Answering Service Do?
An answering service is a third-party company that answers incoming calls for your business. You can hire a service to handle calls on a 24/7 basis, for calls coming in after hours, as a call overflow solution, or on-demand. The variety of options gives companies great versatility.
The most popular services provided include:
- Call screening
- Answering FAQs
- Client intake
- Appointment scheduling
- Message forwarding
- Calendar management
- Transfer of urgent calls
Benefits of Hiring an Answering Service
The two most common reasons to hire an answering service are that they can be a more cost-effective solution than hiring in-house employees, and answering services can save you time.
Some other benefits include:
- 24/7 availability
- Enhanced customer service
- Faster response times
- Frees up time to focus on running your business
- Gather only the top qualified leads
- Call tracking and analytics
- Multi-language capability
Hiring a third-party answering service can offer a win-win for companies: they save money while providing greater convenience and accessibility to their customers.
How to Pick the Best Answering Service for You
The right call answering service can be a great advantage to your business. Keep the following five questions in mind when choosing an answering service.
1. Can They Meet Your Needs?
Determine exactly what you need an answering service to do for your business: Do you want them to set appointments? Would you like them to answer product/service questions? Are they able to transfer or send urgent messages to you immediately? Do you need around-the-clock or multi-language capabilities?
Once you have dialed in to what you are looking for, you can determine if a company meets your needs.
2. What Solutions Do They Provide?
Consider the value an answering service can offer beyond just answering the phone. Perhaps they can set up new, more effective processes or have the ability to import accurate messages into your customer service database.
Another consideration is whether the answering service can meet your needs as your business grows. Are they able to take care of present demands as well as deliver other solutions in the future?
3. How Do They Ensure Quality?
Most answering services say they provide quality, but you want a partner that actually delivers it, not just talks about it. Ask for client testimonials and carefully study them. Look for recent testimonials; they are a better indicator of current quality. Longer statements can be better than short ones that may have been taken out of context.
Online reviews are another valuable resource. Keep in mind that people sometimes use online review platforms to vent or demand their way. Another thing to look at is if the answering service has won any awards, which can be an indication that they are a high-quality provider.
4. What Industries Do They Have Experience In?
Ideally, you want an answering service that has experience in your industry. This means that they have a built-in understanding of how to provide excellent service, the types of needs your callers face, and how to communicate effectively with them.
5. How Much Does the Answering Service Cost?
Answering services vary, and like most things you often get what you pay for. Make sure any service you’re considering has flexible pricing, rather than a one-size-fits-all rate that may or may not meet your needs. Flexible pricing also gives you room to grow and adjust the service as your needs change.
Choose the Right Answering Service Partner
A quality answering service that fits your needs can promote growth, free you up to focus on other tasks and initiatives, and improve your customers’ experience. ROI Solutions provides comprehensive answering services for companies of all sizes. Experience greater freedom to grow and expand with the right partner at your side. Contact ROI Solutions to discover how our answering services can help your business today.