Are you on the fence about working with an answering service?

While the idea of having someone remote answering your phones – and adding another business expense to your ledger – might make you reluctant, there comes a time when you need to outsource in order to grow. Contrary to what you might believe, working with an answering service is just as professional, and even more cost-effective, than hiring an in-house receptionist.

If you’re not sure if your business is ready for an answering service, here are five questions to consider:

  1. Do you have trouble answering all of your calls when they come in?
    If you frequently rely on voicemail in order to answer calls on a day-to-day basis, you’re leaving current and potential customers frustrated. When they call your business line, they expect to reach you or your staff, not a voicemail greeting or a dead end. As your business grows, you’ll see an increase in incoming calls and if you can’t keep up with them, its time to consider an answering service.
  1. Do you need to constantly check voicemail to keep up with customer needs?
    If you’re missing calls and they are going straight to voicemail, then you’re making extra work for yourself throughout the day. You or a staff member will need to check in with voicemail on a regular basis, take notes and return calls. This constant checking interrupts the flow of the workday, and leaves your callers feeling like an afterthought. No one wins!
  1. Is your voicemail always full?
    When you don’t pick up calls and don’t regularly go through voicemail messages, you could be reaching the max limits of your voicemail on a regular basis. What happens when your inbox reaches these limits? If you aren’t picking up calls, your incoming callers could be receiving and automated “inbox full” message – and you’re losing out on potential new business.
  1. Are your employees distracted from their work by answering the phone?
    Having a busy, ringing phone is great news for your business – but if it’s drawing your employees’ attention away from what they need to do, then it’s a problem. Your employees need to focus on helping current customers, not on screening incoming calls. A virtual receptionist team from a professional answering service can free up you and your team’s time so that all of you can concentrate on more important work.
  1. Does your phone over-ring before it is picked up?
    Over-ringing (letting the phone ring excessively before picking up) is just as frustrating to incoming callers as reaching your voicemail inbox. If you and your employees are scrambling to answer the phones, you need help.

If you’ve answered “yes” to any (or more) of these questions, it’s time to get some answering service help. Your business may depend on it!