Receptionists seem to be either too busy or have nothing to do. It’s unreasonable to expect a uniform flow of calls throughout a day; they tend to come in peaks & troughs. Several lines can ring & once but then silence for ages. It’s a risk not answering all your calls as some of them will be customers. At the best it could frustrate them, at the worst loose a sale, so what are virtual assistants?
Many businesses therefore outsource their reception. This gives them a professional team on hand capable of answering the phone, irrespective of how many calls come through. The ‘virtual’ receptionists become a natural extension of the business, answering calls and servicing customers.
Whilst the phone service is quick to set up the team at Whitfield take the time to get to know a business so they can understand the company’s individual ethos and culture. This allows them to embody their goals & values when dealing with their customers. The customer should have the impression that they are speaking to someone within the company. The more that the virtual receptionists work for a company, the better they get to know & understand them. In turn this leads to even better service for that business’ customers.
Receptionists also perform admin duties such as booking appointments, providing sales information, chasing & taking payments, responding to emails or managing social media accounts. They can also direct calls to staff seamlessly or take messages and field annoying sales calls. This leaves a company more time to concentrate on the core business.
Outsourcing can be a cost-effective solution for businesses, particularly for smaller businesses that may not have the budget to hire a large staff. Outsourcing telephone services and administrative tasks can save money on salaries and office space. There is no need to invest in expensive equipment or technology, as Whitfield’s cloud-based systems integrate with any landline, mobile & most popular PC based systems.
A typical virtual receptionist fee costs a fraction of employing a full time assistant, without any of employment challenges; holidays, sickness, recruitment etc. Outsourcing reception therefore allows businesses to pay only for the services they need, when they need them. Contracts are available on a monthly contract so no big commitment and there is a 14 day free trail to test how well it works.
Outsourcing can provide businesses with the flexibility to scale their operations up or down depending on their needs. For example, if a business experiences a sudden increase in call volume or needs additional administrative support during a busy period, outsourcing can provide a quick and flexible solution. Virtual receptionists also allows businesses to easily add or remove services as needed, which can help them adapt to changing market conditions.
Nick Arnott from Wirral business Cars2Go has been utilising the virtual phone services for several years now. Nick said “Being able to outsource our reception function to Whitfield takes a real burden off our staff. It’s great that they’re able to offer a professional front to our customers answering our calls and queries allowing us to carry on repairing cars.”
Looking to the future, the tech team at Whitfield are currently trialing artificial intelligence (AI) voice-bots, which have many advantages; they can run 24/7/365 at the fraction of the cost of a human. They can switch to most popular world languages, thus helping inclusivity. They have API links allowing them to access software platforms to serve customers. They have safety nets to ensure that they refer to a human if they’re unable to help the customer. You may have experienced one if you’ve called your bank or credit card provider recently. Watch this space…
Outsourcing telephone services and virtual assistants can provide numerous benefits for businesses particularly SMEs. Improved customer service, increased productivity, cost savings and flexibility are just a few of the benefits that outsourcing can provide. By outsourcing non-core business activities, businesses can focus on their core competencies and achieve greater success in their markets.
To see how this works Whitfield are offering a free, no obligation 14 day trial. Call (and test) their receptionists on 0151 342 6365 or find out more here.