Are Phone Calls Keeping You From Growing Your Business?
The Signs Your Business Needs a Phone System.
Recently I held a brainstorming session with small business owners to learn more about phone systems. Small business people rely exclusively on Cell Phones until they grow into commercial office space. These days technology helps us delay when we need to make that move and so delay that point when a phone system can really start to help us.
Are Phone Calls Keeping You From Growing Your Business? There comes a point in the life of every small business owner when you’re so busy taking calls that you no longer have the time, to do the things, that grow your business. This is one of the main reasons, larger companies have a phone system. Phone system help you defer or re-route calls so you can have dedicated time for the “real work” that generates revenue and adds new customers.
“We want every call to be answered by a live person”. We hear this a lot from small business people and having every call answered within two rings by a live person is very good – but expensive. The alternative is an Auto Attendant or that familiar recorded greeting “Welcome To Helia. If you know the extension of the person…”
If you can answer every phone call thats great. Many busy small business people want to think they can, but callers find themselves going ringing to voicemail. This is far worse travisty than hearing an Auto Attendant. The good news is a small business person can have the best of both worlds. This is what we do for doctors offices; The phone rings twice to give the receptionist the opportunity to answer the phone and then if they’re busy, the caller is routed to the auto attendant.
Why Auto Attendants Are Good for your Business
1) Avoids the “wrong department” transfers we all hate when calling big companies. As you grow, you’re no longer the best person to talk to for every issue. Instead of doing a “I’ll find out”, “I’ll have them call you”, which eats up your time, your auto attendant can include the major departments like accounting, support that go directly to the person(s) best suited to handle it
2) Gives you consistent professional branding for all inbound calls. As an owner, you’re really good at representing your business. Not every employee or subcontractor is. The matter is worse when using a cell phone that covers both business and personal. An auto attendant allows you to consisently greet your callers with a professionally branded message like “Hello and thank you for calling Helia – Ensuring your I.T. continues to just work”.
3) Auto Attendants gives an option beyond ring-to-voicemail. In our opinion, ringing three times then going to voicemail is the worst possible option. Your Auto Attendant and phone system allows more choices. The most common is to ring everyones phone (including cell phones) until somone answers. While your caller is waiting, give them some music and your branded company message. Many companies also include the “Did you know… Helia also does Inventory control for small warehouses and manufacturers”. The second option is the more recent “Request a call back” This is used for larger companies where your phones will continue to ring and when you’re available to answer, your phone system will call the caller back and connect you.
4) Auto Attendants give your customers a single number to call. If your running your business off a bunch of cell phones, your customers may need to have multiple numbers to get a hold of the right person. An Autoattendant gives them a single number and easy access to the employee that can help the best.
Responding to every caller is top-of-list for growing your small business. Your business will grow to the point when you can’t answer every call. Its at this point that you need a phone system – to better server your callers and make better use of your time.
Helia’s Hosted small business solutions allow you to get phone system features without a big upfront phone system price. Your cell phone (like this Dell phone in the above picture) can continue to be used instead of a desk phone, which keeps the transision simple.
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