Hiring employees is quite the endeavor. Initially there is the cost of advertising or recruiting the candidate. Then add in the cost to human resources to read over resumes, interview, check references, screen candidates and make an offer. The reason that organizations spend so much time, money and effort in the hiring process is because they want a quality employee.
Unfortunately, the same time, money, and effort isn’t always considered when hiring an answering service. Yet the person who answers the phone is representing your business and often, on the very front lines of your organization.
Why Hire an Answering Service?
An answering service is hired when an organization reaches a tipping point that call handling becomes overwhelming. Generally the phones are keeping the business owner or someone else so busy that they are unable to focus on other tasks that are just as important. The reasons organizations hire answering services include:
- 24/7 call handling
- Appointment scheduling
- Customer service
In order to keep costs down, some businesses will opt to go with a less expensive answering service. They are getting the bare minimum of needs met when it comes to answering the phones, so they believe they have made the right choice.
What’s Missing in a Cheap Answering Service?
Customers are demanding more from businesses than the bare minimum. With new startups and businesses increasing year over year, competition is fierce. In order to stay relevant in the mind of the consumer, organizations have to do more.
Lack of training in any business creates a less than quality employee. The reason some answering services are cheap is because they are not investing in their employees. Not investing in employees leads to a lack of…
Employees don’t tend to stick around places where they feel as if the company is trying to spare a dollar by cutting corners. Employees won’t give their all to a company that isn’t investing in them. Do you want an unhappy phone agent answering your calls?
Empathy is an important measure of customer service and client satisfaction. Happy employees and a supportive work environment allow call handlers to engage in a manner that suits the caller. Meeting the caller where they are – calm and urgent in an emergency, helpful in the case of a moment of frustration – goes a long way in ensuring a customer who stays with your business.
Call Performance Standards
A quality answering service will hold their performance to a higher standard than a cheap answering service. They will continually measure, improve, and measure again. You can expect reports of the number of calls received, approximate length of the calls, hold times and other metrics to give you peace of mind that your calls are being answered efficiently.
Who is Answering Your Phones?
Hiring a cheap answering service may seem like a good choice for your business. Considering all the time, money, and effort you put into hiring an employee, would you want someone without adequate training answering your phone? And how much more would you have to spend to hire a replacement if you have a high turnover rate? Do you think you can retain current customers or win new ones with a very unhappy voice on your end of a phone call? These questions are paramount when selecting the company who represents the first line of your business.