After Hours Small Business Telephone Answering Service
My first series of posts here was basically “Why Your Small Business Needs an Answering Service.” However, all the posts were really geared towards why you need us to replace and/or supplement your receptionist. Another really strong pull for a service like ours is the need to have something like a “dispatcher” available after hours to discriminate between urgent and non-urgent calls, and make sure those urgent ones are relayed in a timely manner. This is really the “other half of the coin” when it comes to the sorts of clients we have. Our clients usually fall into the “business day” or the “after hours” camps, and the two groups have very different needs.
If you are already using a great answering service for after hours — hang on to them! Great answering services are hard to find. If, however, you’ve been getting by forwarding to your cell phone, or maybe putting your cell phone number on a recording for people to call, please hear me out.
The dangers with giving your clients direct access to your cell phone are numerous. First, you must go to sleep, get in the shower, and change a flat tire on the side of the road, etc., on occasion. You just CAN’T be available 24/7 like we can. This means that sometimes, your most important client will call you at that moment when they are in a panic and need you… and you are A) half asleep, B) just jumped out of the shower, or C) standing next to a busy highway with a tire iron in your hand. You just aren’t going to make a great impression on them. If we answer, it will be promptly and with a competent person. They will get the details; advise the caller we will call someone immediately. Once we get the message to you, you will have a chance to gather your thoughts, grab a pen and paper, and call them back. Don’t you think that will lead to a more professional impression on your client?
Second, using your cell phone is risky. You could put it on silent while you’re at your child’s school play, and then leave it on silent. Your battery could die. You could leave the cell in your truck when you get home, then go to sleep. I think computer networking types call this a vulnerable single point of failure.
With a 24/7 answering service , we are always here and available. If we don’t get you on your cell, we can call your home number; call a back up person, etc. We’ll make sure the call gets through!
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