When a customer calls your business, the very first impression they get about your company is the voice which they hear at the other end of the line and how efficiently their call gets routed to the proper destination. If one or the other of these two components is missing or not up to snuff, a potential customer will probably not be as favorably impressed as they might have been, if those components had been optimally handled.
When you think about this for a minute, it’s easy to see that it’s no exaggeration at all to say that the auto attendant for your telephony system can be a critical factor in pleasing and satisfying the vast number of customers calling your company on a daily basis. Here are some of the other reasons why the auto attendant feature on your phone system should be considered critical to your business success.
Professional and Cordial Greeting
While a friendly voice is probably delightful to hear, the greeting should be both professional and cordial in its tone, inspiring confidence in the caller that your company is reliable and friendly. If you have access to someone with a clear voice, they might be the person to use for recording your auto attendant message.
However, if you don’t think anyone has the right kind of voice which you’d like callers to hear every day, it would be worth your while to hire a professional voiceover artist, so you can get the exact expression you’re looking for in a recorded message.
Establish a Call Tree
A call tree is another sign of professionalism from your company. The good thing about having a call tree is that you can look at and review the entire calling network so that it is easy to see any flaws or complications for your callers.
It’s never a good idea to require callers to navigate their way through a large number of selections just to get to a single speaker they’re interested in. Your call tree should point out any such complications so that you have a chance to streamline it and make it much simpler for your callers.
Don’t Forget Zero
It’s very common for callers who get frustrated with having to navigate through complicated menu levels to attempt to break out of the whole construct by pressing ‘zero.’ Your callers are going to get much more frustrated if there is no living, breathing person to talk to who resides at address zero, so it’s important to make sure that a caller selecting zero is directed to a person like a receptionist, who can directly connect them to the desired party.
Pressing zero should not be viewed as a sanctioned circumvention of the menu system, but as a built-in safeguard against callers getting excessively frustrated and hanging up. It’s far better that you have someone available at all times ready to take calls from persons pressing zero than it is to lose those calls entirely. Lost calls mean lost business.
After Hours Setup
Not all of your callers will have the opportunity to call your company in the daytime, during regular business hours. But you don’t want to lose business just because they happen to call after the close of business, so you should take steps to ensure that potentially critical after-hours calls are received and appropriately handled. You need to assure callers that their calls are essential to your company and that they will be followed up on at the earliest opportunity.
The first thing you need for this setup is a specific greeting that contains an after-hours message. It can be very similar to your daytime creating, except that it should also inform callers about your regular business hours, and it should make some comment about returning their call as quickly as possible. The call tree should then be invoked so that any caller can have their message recorded in the voicemail box for an intended party.
The Auto Attendant Uses Less Bandwidth
If there is a significant number of employees in your company who work both remotely and in the office setting it will be worthwhile to have a Voice over IP system supporting your auto attendant. By using a cloud-based Voice over IP system, you’ll waste much less bandwidth on off-site lines, because your telephone system will only use the required bandwidth necessary to hook up those phones physically located in the office.
Consistency Equals Reliability
The fact that your customers can call you any time of day, any day of the week, and have their call adequately received and routed to the appropriate party, says a lot about your company’s consistency. With a pleasant auto attendant in place to manage your telephony system and provide all callers with the most favorable possible impression, your business will be the beneficiary of a lot of positive perception.