Digital technologies have opened the door to all sorts of virtual enhancements. In the business world, we have what is known as the ‘virtual receptionist‘. However, do not assume a virtual receptionist is some sort of digital representation of a reception app. A virtual receptionist is a real, live person who handles reception tasks just as if they were a salaried employee.
Virtual reception is similar to live answering services. The big difference is that a virtual reception service provider does all the things a salary receptionist would do. So it is more than just answering calls and forwarding messages. Of course, a live answering service capable of handling all the required tasks is more than able to fulfill the role of a virtual receptionist.
Ideal for the Smallest of Businesses
What types of companies would use a virtual receptionist? More often than not, you are talking about the smallest of businesses that are not yet big enough to bring a full-time receptionist on staff. Right away we think of HVAC contractors, plumbers, landscapers, and so on. Even small, private medical practices needing help with the phones during the busiest of times could benefit from virtual reception.
Here are some of the more common tasks virtual receptionists handle:
- Answering inbound calls.
- Taking and forwarding messages.
- Scheduling appointments.
- Fielding simple inquiries.
- Explaining services and pricing.
The key to virtual reception is to know how to make a connection with customers. Remember that the receptionist is often the first contact a customer has with a business. So you need the right kinds of people answering the phones.
When to Consider Virtual Reception
Virtual reception makes a lot of sense for small businesses that get more phone calls than ownership is able to reasonably handle. Once again, the smallest of businesses that need help with the phones but cannot yet afford to hire a full-time receptionist are prime candidates.
Is it time for you to consider virtual reception or a live answering service? Ask yourself these questions:
- Am I spending more time on the phone than I really should be?
- Do I get enough daily calls to interfere with my normal work?
- Are phone calls pulling me away from more important matters?
- Am I missing a lot of calls because I cannot always answer?
- Do I spend a lot of time out of the office, forcing me to take calls on my cell?
- Do I have to be available to answer calls after hours?
The answers to each of these questions paint a picture illustrating how well your company currently handles inbound calls. If there is any indication that you are not handling calls as well as you should be, it might be time to start looking at a live answering service or virtual receptionist.
A Customized Menu of Services
We encourage you to check out several live answering services, starting with Apello. We do more than just answer calls and take messages. In fact, you can pick and choose from a variety of services to create your own customized menu. We want you to benefit from the services that are perfectly suited for the way you do business. We don’t want you stuck with services that are either inadequate are not worth the investment.
Virtual reception is not a new idea. However, it has come into its own in recent years. Virtual reception gives small businesses access to receptionist services without having to hire a full-time employee. It is the best of both worlds when you need reception assistance but can’t afford to bring on new staff.