Answering Services Explained
Answering services are what business and others used before the phone companies offered voice mail and before there were answering machines. Answering services are businesses that answer the phones and take messages for people, whether they are doctors, lawyers, or other businesses and individuals. Instead of leaving a message at the sound of the tone, you leave your message with a human being who takes down the relevant information and passes it on to their client. These people can answer questions and can usually reach the party you are calling in case of an emergency.
Today, most answering services are located off-shore where labor costs are less. This means they can provide the answering service duties at a lower cost. They are call-centers who function as answering services. Many people who will hang up on an answering machine or voice mail will talk with the human that answers the phone. The advantage for the answering servicesí client is that they donít miss important phone calls for this reason. The answering service has a human who can direct the caller to the appropriate entity in an emergency. This is something that voice mail and answering machines canít do.
Most of these off-shore or out-of-state answering services will deliver message to the client by email or phone. They will fill in for the client and his staff by handling the phone while they are absent from the premises or out of reach in some way. Your business does not lose the big client or big deal because you are out of the office or decide to take a vacation day. You donít have to make special arrangements to have your phone covered by hiring someone on a temporary basis. The answering service can take orders for you. You donít have to worry about your answering machine or voice mail being full from all of the calls because you have a human entity answering the phone.
The disadvantage of an answering service is that you donít have control over the people that are staffing the answering service. You can tell them what to say and hope that they say it but you canít control what they say. There is always the chance that they will say something that they shouldnít say and that may cause some problems.
The individual has to weigh the pros and cons of an answering service to decide if it is the correct move. Off-shore entities make the price attractive.
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