Don’t Hire More Administrative Staff — Better Utilize Your Answering Service

Is your administrative staff overwhelmed with work? Before you spend the time and money to hire more administrative staff, consider a different potential asset instead. Which asset? Your professional answering service.

Not sure how to use an answering service to reduce your office staff’s workload? Here are a few ways.

Take Over the Phones

Does your staff provide respite for receptionists or secretarial employees when these go on breaks, leave for lunch, or even take a day off? To coordinate schedules requires time and effort that people could use to stay focused on their own functions. It also means that different staff members must stay trained in different jobs and that you often pay multiple salaried employees to cover one job.

Instead, turn over the phones and certain other jobs to a qualified operator so that your other staff can stay on track for their own roles even when the receptionist has to leave. This costs a fraction of the salary and benefits you’d pay for your people to route calls for a short while.

Route Calls for Secretarial Staff

Secretaries may spend a large portion of their time answering and routing calls within their particular department. If you have a remote operator take care of incoming calls, though, administrative staff won’t be interrupted every few minutes to answer the phone.

Give the answering service information on who does what within the department, how to route common phone inquiries, or when to honor requests for particular staff members. If they experience an inquiry or call that they haven’t been trained to route, the secretary can still serve as a backup plan and source of guidance.

Fill Simple Orders or Services

Look for an answering service that provides order-taking services. You can generally determine what types of simple transactions and recurring orders or refills can be handled without bothering any of your own staff.

Anything that could be done on a simple form can often be done by an operator whom you have provided the right script. This might include setting appointments, calling for non-emergency service calls, reordering existing supplies, or renewing subscriptions or prescriptions.
If you outsource basic ordering requirements, administrative staff have more time to devote to unhappy customers, complex orders, or wooing customers.

Answer Phones During Busy Hours

Assess the staff’s busy times during the day, week, or month. When are they bombarded by the most outside phone calls? What are they trying to accomplish at the same time? When could it be the most useful to remove the ringing phones from the equation?

Do customers call for appointments as soon as your daily office hours begin, for instance? Then you may want to leave the answering service in charge of receiving calls while your employees get their day started. Do you get a lot of customer inquiries on Friday afternoon just before closing? This is another good time to turn over the phones so everyone in-house can focus on wrapping up their other duties.
In addition to daily and weekly cycles, think about special events or situations that might alter phone usage. Do you have a higher call volume after a product is launched? Then arrange for phone orders or sales inquiries to be routed to the answering service instead. During winter storms, might a medical practice get increased calls canceling appointments or asking about your hours? Have a service handle simple requests.
At Professional Answering Service, our trained operators are ready to help take the burden off your employees. We offer a variety of customized services, including to meet the needs of any size company. Call today to make an appointment to learn more.
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