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A Better Answer Blog

How to Meet Customer Needs During a Natural Disaster


Floods, tornadoes and hurricanes, oh my! Natural disasters are a big problem for businesses that communicate regularly with customers—especially if you’re in a disaster-prone area like Tornado Alley or near the coast. Sometimes it seems like a new natural disaster season is always around the corner. So what happens to your business when there’s a natural disaster? If you’re not prepared, you could lose your communication abilities, leading to lost revenue and customers.

Fortunately, at A Better Answer Call Centers, we taken extra precautions against such situations and have formulated emergency call center contingency plans that let us do everything in our power to not only protect ourselves, but meet the communication needs of our customers should any natural disaster take place.

The Benefits of Regional Offices

A tremendous advantage of using a call center with remote offices is that if a natural disaster occurs in one location, the other two bureaus can take over to handle customer calls with shared lines and staff. We have three offices: our corporate office in Dallas/Plano and regional offices in Fort Worth and Houston.

We also utilize remote Telephone Service Representatives (also known as “TSRs”) that operate outside of these areas and can jump in to handle any increased activity due to an influx of concerned callers checking on their families, friends and customers. Also, we’ve found that most of our clients forward their local phone lines using Telco call forwarding. Should that method fall off during a disaster, ABA can help get this reinstated so you don’t lose any calls. 

The Drawbacks of Foreign Call Centers 

ABA is local to many of our customers, so we understand what’s really going on. We safely reroute calls to another location in case you can’t answer— whether that’s for a few minutes, a day or even longer. Our staff is trained to know our geographic areas. Foreign call centers can be at a serious disadvantage in such situations. It can be difficult for them to understand the impact of a local natural disaster and be flexible enough to make the necessary changes to handle the crisis. Business owners and managers deserve to be able to sleep at night knowing that their business calls are going to be answered and that business communications are safe and secure.

Why A Proven Disaster Plan is Essential

Finally, as part of our call center disaster plan, we back up communication with several uninterruptable power supplies, on-site generators and backup contracts with local generator suppliers. In addition, we’ve implemented a vendor “guarantee of redistribution” for all calls if those emergency precautions fail.

With more than 45 years experience taking calls for our customers, A Better Answer is your communication solution for natural disasters. Contact us today to see why we’re your Call Handling Heroes.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2011 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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Topics: Better Service Better Communications