In Part One, we talked about why all live answering services must put callers on hold occasionally. In Part Two, we reviewed how most answering services deal with this problem. In this third and final installment, we’ll discuss how Honest Answering deals with this situation.
Our first line of defense is to staff adequately for our call volume on that shift. We actually try to over-staff by one operator when possible, to provide truly first-class service. However, just like every live answering service out there, you will always run into some instances where callers have to wait on a brief hold.
Our system works like this – if a call comes in and is not answered by a live person after 3-4 rings, a customized recording for that particular office will come on. It will say something like “Hello, you’ve reached ABC Services. Please hold for just a moment, and someone will be with you shortly.” As soon as an operator becomes free (even if it’s halfway through playing the above announcement), the caller is immediately connected the operator.
Compared to the alternative (see Part Two in this series), this provides the following benefits. First, it is more efficient. Callers wait on hold less than they would use the alternative system. Second, once a caller gets to an operator, they will have that operator’s undivided attention until they hang up. Stop and read that second one again, it’s a biggy. Finally, because an operator is not “flipping back and forth” in the middle of several calls, between different calls, messages, and accounts, they are much less likely to make a mistake which could result in disconnecting accidentally among other things.
I’ve worked with both systems, and I can’t tell you how much more pleasant our system is for the operators and the callers. Try us out, and let us show you what a great job we can do for you!