6 Signs That It’s Time to Hire a Virtual Receptionist

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Virtual receptionists are the employees that answer your calls in an answering service. From helping you answer phone calls to freeing up your time to foster more meaningful relationships with your clients, learn the top 6 signs that you should hire a virtual receptionist and why hiring one could be one of the best investments you’ll make in the growth and stability of your small business.

1. You’re Not Catching Enough Z’s

If you can’t remember when the last time you had a good night’s sleep, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. Getting a good night’s sleep is an essential part of being productive. If you’re up all night worrying about what you couldn’t get done that day, what you have planned for tomorrow, or if your voicemail isn’t capturing all opportunities – all are good indications that you need some extra help. Hiring a virtual receptionist to help take some of the work load off your shoulders is a great way to help ease your mind & it’s better than counting sheep. Since answering services are (usually) available 24/7 to answer your calls, you won’t have to worry about missing calls in the middle of the night and you can stop having those nightmares about missed business opportunities.

2. You Can’t Remember the Last Time You Had a Break

If you can’t remember the last time you took a vacation, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. Taking breaks from work is a necessity. We’re not talking coffee breaks here, but actual time off to relax and re-charge your batteries. If you’re running a one man show, this can seem pretty much impossible. However, virtual assistant services offer whole crews ready to field calls while you’re out, so your customer service will still be on point even while you’re living it up in Margaritaville.

If you’re thinking about hiring extra help only while you’re out of town, then you definitely want to avoid long term contracts. While many answering services require commitments of 12 months or more, others (including SAS) offer short term service. Hiring an answering service temporarily is a cost effective way to help handle calls while you’re out of town, and they can be activated and deactivated quickly. In addition to activating a service when you’re vacationing, other short-term scenarios include:

  • Launching a new product or service: Whenever you launch a new product or service, you’re bound to get more calls than you can handle. From callers asking questions to customers wanting to purchase said product or service, your phones may be ringing off the hook. However, as long as you set up your answering service protocols prior to launching, the operators will certainly be able to answer questions, place orders, or get callers in touch with the right department if they are not able to assist.
  • Airing a charity telethon or pledge drive: Telethons drive up call volume, especially if they are familiar annual events. Temporary receptionist support that can be activated quickly and easily are a great way to ensure none of your callers have to wait on hold during your pledge drive.
  • Handling product recalls: If you manufacture products or sell any consumer goods, you always have to prepare for the worst, which means you have to prepare for recalls. Grabbing virtual receptionists to temporarily field calls is an efficient way to help alleviate the pressure on you and your staff, and can help protect your brand.

3. You’re Not Getting Anything Done

If you’re spinning your wheels every day at work, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. Outsourcing 100% of your customer service, or at the very least just your receptionist duties to an answering service, are easy chores to unload. Once your calls start being answered by anyone but you, you’ll free up time to concentrate on what really matters. Having the extra time to focus on your daily responsibilities will not only allow you to catch up on that stack of work piling up in your corner, but it may also allow you to get your creative juices flowing again.

4. You’re Not Capturing Leads

If you’re missing calls to voicemail, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. When you run a small business, you’re a jack-of-all-trades. You’re probably the one taking calls, scheduling appointments, filing paperwork, processing invoices, and maybe even cleaning the bathrooms. With all of these chores, you might find yourself struggling to catch your breath, let alone answer a phone call. If this sounds familiar, an answering service could be your new best friend. Virtual assistants can help you with:

  • Answering callers questions: A phone call isn’t always a sale, but it can always lead to one. People may call businesses just to ask questions. Instead of pushing those callers to voicemail, or having them eat up your time, have your answering service do the job for you! Simply provide your service with frequently asked questions, and let them take care of the rest.
  • Processing orders: Virtual receptionists can access websites, place orders and take down credit card information.
  • Scheduling appointments: Whether you have your own scheduling platform on your website or use a shared calendar, virtual receptionists should be able to access the system and schedule appointments accordingly.
  • Dispatching urgent calls: Emergencies never happen at a convenient time, which is why a 24/7 answering service can be a huge advantage to an up and coming small business. If your business provides after hours emergency service, but you don’t have anyone to answer calls after hours, how are you going to ever make a profit? By having an emergency answering service to help field and dispatch calls after hours,  you never have to miss another business opportunity.

5. Your Turnover Rate is High

If you’re having trouble keeping employees, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. For a fraction of the cost it takes to hire one full time employee, you can have all of your calls answered by a whole team of virtual receptionists 24/7. With a 24/7 virtual answering service, you never have to worry about employees calling out sick or going on vacation, or having to dish out the extra funds for benefits.

6. You’re Spending More Than You’re Bringing in

If you’re looking to cut costs, you need to hire a virtual receptionist. Running a business is expensive. From buying materials and hiring employees to renting office space and putting money towards advertisements, many small businesses end up bankrupt before they get their feet off the ground. While hiring an answering service sounds like it’s just one more expense, it’s actually incredibly cost effective. If you’re just starting out, you may want to consider skipping actual employees and going straight to virtual. For as little as $1 a day, you could have all of your calls answered by a whole team of operators ensuring that no caller reaches a voicemail.

We all want to run a successful small business. Why not let virtual receptionists get you started in the right direction and spark your internal drive to continue growing your business? After all, while our top 6 reasons to hire a virtual assistant are important, the number-one reason will always be the success of your business.

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Specialty Answering Service is a leading call center company, helping fast-growing businesses close sales and deliver amazing live customer support 24 hours a day. SAS' friendly virtual receptionists and customized call handling create an outstanding virtual office experience. There are thousands of small businesses already using our services. Try SAS for free today.

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