The answering service company you choose can have an effect on how well your business is perceived by customers and business partners. If you select the wrong company, the unprofessionalism of the operators could leave a poor impression of your business. Therefore, it is important that you ask the right questions of yourself and the answering service companies before you make your final decision. Here are a few questions to start the process.  

What Are Your Needs? 

Answering service companies offer more than just someone on the other line to answer calls to your business. Some companies offer other services, such as scheduling. You can even find a service that gives out information about your business, such as the office hours and location. In addition to these services, some companies offer more than just phone service. Some even offer text messaging and email.  

Before narrowing down your choices, you need to know which services you need. This could be your chance to expand your current answering options to make it more convenient for customers and business partners to get in touch with you.  

How Does the Company Ensure There Is Staff to Meet Your Needs? 

Once you contract with an answering service company to provide your communications services, whether or not they have staff available to meet your needs is important. If the company has a shortage, the hold times for your customers to speak to an operator could lengthen. The ring time could even increase.  

Even though it is the responsibility of the company to ensure it is staffed to handle your needs, you need to ask whether or not there is a plan in place to handle various conditions. For instance, if your business typically experiences high call volume during the evening hours, does the company have the staff on hand to answer the calls within a reasonable amount of time? 

Does the Company in Compliance With the State and Federal Regulations? 

Depending on the type of business you operate, there might be some state and federal regulations that the answering service company's operators need to meet before they can answer the phones for your business. If the company is not in compliance, you could face legal consequences later.  

For instance, if you are giving access to the business to medical accounts, are the operators certified in HIPPA compliance? If not, will they be trained in time to start handling your calls?

Talk with companies like A Tri-Cities Connection Inc. for more information.