Sometimes we know a red flag when we see one. A date with a wrinkly shirt, getting the ol’ bait and switch at a job interview, or your accountant telling you they’re broke. In business, not all red flags are so obvious. In this article, we’re going to share 5 red flags you should look for when selecting a call answering service.
This applies to call answering services and most businesses in general. The truth is, we all appreciate transparent pricing, so when we feel like a potential partner isn’t disclosing everything it’s a massive red flag. Here are some of the more common fees that are either hidden, or simply in the fine print.
- Technology fee
- Compliance fee
- Statutory holiday fee
Another sneaky fee for call answering services is training costs. Some services will use what’s called a dump account for training agents and allowing them to become experts with your script without chewing up your valuable call minutes. Ask your call answering service if they use an account like this, or if you, the customer, are left to foot the bill for training.
Can't work in your CRM
Your call answering service should do more than simply take calls and messages, they should act as an extension of your business, including administrative tasks like updating customer information in your CRM.
To be totally transparent, a call answering service working within your CRM will cost more than if they are simply taking messages, but the added value and saved time for your employees make it worth it.
We're only open 9-5
For most small businesses, the primary reason for partnering with a call answering service is to be available to customers 24/7. If your call answering service provider or virtual answering service is only open the same regular business hours that you are, it doesn’t really help much.
Most call answering services are open 24/7/365 and this is a moot point, however, it’s still worth double checking during your vetting process. Once you’re finally able to offer that coveted 24/7 service, be sure to measure the lift in appointments booked, customer satisfaction, and calls handled outside regular business hours.
Check the company’s reviews on Google, Facebook, Trust Pilot, and other platforms. What customers (and sometimes more importantly, the employees) say about an organization can tell you everything you need to know.
Now, of course, this applies to all businesses, but it is especially true for call answering services. Along with researching company reviews, you may also want to note of how long the company has been in business. Do you want to gamble with a small startup or choose a time-tested organization with decades of experience?
Slow and outdated setup
If the setup for your account is outdated and slow, chances are the service to your customers will be too. If a fax machine is involved, that’s a major red flag. Choose a call answering service with a smooth and easy online setup. In 2023 you should expect to see digitized documents, modern service options, and a responsive team supporting you along the way.
That’s it! Those are our 5 red flags to look out for when selecting your next call answering service. If you’d like to learn more about the industries Telelink Answering specializes in you can visit our website here.