Virtual Office Featured Article
Outsourcing and Technology Are the Modern Receptionist
Virtual Office Resource Contributor
It’s an old stereotype: a business hires a receptionists (or several of them), and they answer calls and deliver messages, reading a book during quiet times when the phone’s not ringing. They served a purpose at the time: they took messages, transferred calls, booked appointments and reminded managers and executives of their schedules.
Fast-forward to today, and technology already does most of those things for us. We have mobile phones, voice mail, call forwarding, automated messaging, appointment booking and confirmation and more. The days of being able to justify the costs of a human being to engage in these tasks are gone.
The management of communications today is a virtual process and not one that requires a lot of on-staff administrative support. In a recent blog post for Tech.com, Debra Carpenter explains that virtual receptionists are one growing option for automating your business.
“By outsourcing call answering, appointments and booking, call forwarding, and message delivery, you can avoid hiring full time and give yourself additional time to focus on your highest priorities,” she wrote. “Virtual receptionists are trained to answer incoming calls for your business in the manner that you specify. If you work with a reputable virtual receptionist provider, your callers will never know your receptionist took the call from a remote location.”
Outsourcing of communications administration is one choice for cost savings. Another is using technology to literally eliminate most receptionist tasks while still keeping control of messaging, conferencing and other capabilities under your business’ roof.
Business phone service in the cloud such as those offered by Phone.com (News - Alert) are becoming increasingly attractive to small businesses. These solutions provide smaller companies with all the features they require – on an affordable basis – and help them trim office staff that traditionally performed the kind of tasks needed to do business. They’re also easy to use, change and scale to your business’ needs.
With virtual phone service, companies can easily use their existing phone systems, even if they are analog phones (thanks to adapter technologies). Phones purchased directly from the virtual office solution provider generally come pre-configured, ready to work the moment they’re plugged into your network. From there, you simply download the software, and use your computer as your phone extension. The services aren’t just for desktop phones: they’ll also work with any mobile device, which allows you to bring the entire business telecom system onto one easy to manage platform.
As business becomes less centralized and more mobile, global and distributed, the needs for services such as conferencing, unified communications, omnichannel communications, messaging and collaboration will only grow. When they grow in an old-fashioned environment – premise based equipment that uses human beings to connect the channels – they will become increasingly expensive and cumbersome, and make it harder to do business. Modern options such as virtual office and virtual communications, can go a long way toward simplifying business communications and simultaneously bringing down the costs.
Edited by Maurice Nagle
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