Some people get confused between what call answering services are, and call centers. While call answering services can be beneficial to businesses to help alleviate wait time, they can be confusing to customers.
What Are Call Answering Services?
A call answering service is usually an industry-specific phone answering service, that has specialists to help the customer. Maybe it’s someone who can make appointments for an HVAC company, and answer some basic questions. Maybe it’s someone who answers for a home hospice business, and can help connect the caller with the right doctor or medical professional for the issue at hand. The important thing to remember is that call answering services address quality in complex, specific areas, while call centers address quantity. These are individuals who actually care about the customer and their needs.
Benefit One: Calling Industry Professionals
When you call a plumber, you want someone who understands plumbing. You don’t want to have a leak or overflow or zero water pressure, and be talking to a carpet seller. You also don’t want to be on hold for over an hour – or call and call, leaving messages, but never actually speaking to someone on the phone. With answering services, you can contact an industry-specific professional, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. No need to worry about calling around someone’s lunch break, or calling after hours. There’s always someone who can help on the other side. A doctor, for example, might not want to answer phone calls about booking appointments or what to do to prepare for a physical at all hours of the night, but when someone is having an emergency, needs to be able to have that information relayed to them in a prompt, timely fashion. Call answering services can step in during those off hours, helping to book appointments and address non-emergency questions, while also being able to forward calls to 911 or directly to the doctor, if needed.
Benefit Two: Levels Of Call Answering To Fit The Business’ Needs
There are times when you need to call a business just to figure out the hours. You don’t need to talk to a person, you don’t need to answer questions. You just need to know when they’re open, or where the business is located, or a simple answer. When an answering service company has the right technology, that can happen. There are:
- Automated Services – For example, push one for hours, two for location, three to talk to a person.
- Live Answering Services – Get a real, live person, 100% of the time.
- Internet Answering Services – Auto chat! Instant message the company (especially helpful for car dealers!)
- Call Center – Simple solutions, like ordering a dress in your size or getting a refund for a product you returned.
The best companies come with multiple of the options listed above. Many times as a customer, you won’t even realize you’re speaking with a call answering service – and that means more efficient business for the company. Everyone wins!