How To Choose The Best Answering Service For Your Business
An answering service can be an invaluable part of your company's operations -- if you pick the right one. Remember: the people answering the phones on your behalf are representing your business. It's crucial that they're trained and qualified to give callers the best possible impression of your operations.
Before you hire an answering service, read the following tips. They'll suggest what to look for, and help you make the right choice for your company.
Here's what to keep in mind:
- Industry certifications
Do they participate in the ATSI Site Certification program? This process requires meeting 60 critical points demonstrating a high level of proficiency in recovery techniques, good business practices, documentation of procedures, and levels of redundancy necessary for 24 / 7 preparedness.
- Proper staff development
Look for a standardized employee training program -- it's a good sign that your callers will receive consistent service. The best answering services also send their employees to educational and technical programs to help further their skills.
Does the company participate in outside assessment programs such as ATSI's Award of Excellence (AOE)? The AOE recognizes excellence by evaluating test calls, measuring how agents handle calls from beginning to end. The goal is for each caller to believe they are the most important person to the agent.
Can your callers talk to a live person 24 hours a day, 7 days a week…even on holidays? Non-stop availability is one of the main advantages of an answering service. Find one that will provide it.
- Message delivery options
A good answering service will relay your messages to you any way you like -- for example, in an email, a ring-through to your cell phone, or a text message to your pager or cell phone. They should also have technology that supports confirming pages via reply text. Make sure you have these options available, so there's no chance of missing a time-sensitive message.
- Staffing that meets your needs
What happens if you have a special promotion, or if it's a busy time of year? Your answering service needs to be prepared to handle the higher call volume.
Partnering with an answering service may be one of the best business decisions you can make. Use these tips to make sure you choose the right one.
» Learn about answering services from Main Line TeleCommunications.