Maybe you do business from 8 am to 5 pm – but that doesn’t mean that your customers’ problems or issues always arise during normal business hours.

If you care about maintaining high levels of customer service, but don’t want to be at the office or tied to your phones around the clock, an after-hours answering service is the right choice for you.

What is an After-Hours Answering Service?

An after-hours answering service allows you to replace your voicemail greeting with a live receptionist who can direct callers to where they need to go. After-hours answering services are designed to help you extend your business hours even if your main office isn’t open. Such a service gives current clients and prospects access to your company around the clock.

When customers call when your business closes, and you aren’t there, you can lose out on considerable opportunities for new business. A 2011 Consumer Reports survey showed that customers who could not reach a human on the other end of a business line rated their irritability at an 8.9 out of 10. Without an after-hours answering service, you’re risking your reputation with your customers and limiting your businesses’ earning potential.

The possibility that you might lose out on business multiplies if those customers are in any kind of emergency situation. If the call is an emergency type call, your after hours answering service receptionist can direct the caller where they need to go – including paging you directly for help.

Who Can Benefit from an After Hours Answering Service?

If your business has a large possibility of receiving incoming calls after hours, you should consider an after-hours service. While all business types can benefit from answering services, certain industries need to rely on after-hours services in order to capture more business.

Some industries that need after hours answering services include:

  • Medical offices and health care clinics – Healthcare needs don’t stop at 5 pm. If you want to keep your patients supported and taken care of, you need after hours answering services and a medical answering service.
  • Contractors and home care professionals – Whether it’s a fallen tree branch or a sudden crack in a wall, your clients need to know you’ll be there for them around the clock.
  • Plumbers and electricians – When emergencies happen for your clients, they need to reach a real person and not a voicemail. If your business line doesn’t pick up, they are going to move on and work with someone else who can stop their overflowing toilet or blown fuse box.

After-hours answering services can give you around the clock coverage for less than it takes to hire a full-time employee. Whether you deal with emergencies situations or just want to provide excellent customer service, an after hours answering service is the right move.