In recent months, we have all had to find different ways of adapting to ‘the new normal’, within both our personal and professional lives as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether that means pushing back your dream travel plans that you had saved up for, or even working/operating a business from your bedroom. In fact, remote working saw a dramatic and previously unprecedented rise in popularity towards the start of the year, with around 42% of Americans working from homeWorking from home boasts a unique range of benefits. For example, you get to spend more quality time with your family, rest when necessary, and cut out lengthy and often expensive commutes to and from work. On the other hand, working online can cause a dip in productivity, a lack of communication, and a feeling of isolation from others within the company as you are no longer spending time together face to face. Zoom calls can be efficient, but they are simply not the same as in-person communication.  Furthermore, when you are not in the office space, you are without certain amenities and staff you need in order to complete your job effectively, such as the support offered by a receptionist or an administrative team. That’s where a remote receptionist comes in.


What is a remote receptionist? 


A remote receptionist, provided by companies such as Virtual Headquarters, will function in the exact same way as a normal receptionist. The only difference is that they will answer the calls from a call center, as opposed to your office. They will answer any incoming calls, converse with customers, and can direct any important information your way. As they operate virtually, this is a great way to take advantage of modern technology when operating your business from home. 


In many cases, they will serve as the first point of contact a client has with your company, and as a result, they will operate with the utmost professionalism to leave a lasting (and positive) impression.  Even better, they are available 24/7. 


If you are expecting an influx of calls, perhaps during the Christmas or holiday period, you can hire a team of receptionists to man the phones as opposed to a single receptionist. This means that clients and potential customers will not be kept waiting. After all, a long wait time sometimes means that a customer will hang up the phone, costing you money in the long run.


Can a remote receptionist save your company money?


The short answer is yes. When you hire a company, such as Virtual Headquarters to run your live virtual receptionist service, you are essentially outsourcing staff for your company. Outsourcing can save you valuable money, as you do not have to pay an employee wage or additional costs (such as healthcare, taxes, etc.), which can amount to $50,000+. 


Additionally, if you forgo hiring a receptionist all together, you are likely to waste valuable time answering the phone and liaising with customers yourself. Whether this means you get interrupted in the middle of an important task by a call and completely lose your train of thought, or you spend your day answering frustrating (and pointless) calls from telemarketing campaigners- this time could easily be better spent elsewhere. Spending too much time on the phone is sure to lead to a dip in your overall productivity, as you are not seeing tasks through to completion quickly enough. However, when you hire a virtual receptionist, they ensure that the phone is never left ringing. This frees up your own time significantly, meaning you can focus on your company and earning money, therefore increasing your earning potential significantly. 


If you are a small business, a receptionist team also adds a layer of credibility and professionalism to your company that would otherwise go amiss. When potential clients are speaking to a receptionist first, they are instantly aware that you are taking this venture seriously, it is not just something you are doing as a side hustle, for example. Therefore, spending money hiring a virtual receptionist is a great investment in the development of your business and its reputation. The more credible you are, the more likely people are to invest within you or make a purchase. 


How do I know I can trust a remote receptionist?


Usually, when you welcome a member of staff to your team, you have an understanding of who they are and their previous experiences. Whether you have combed through their resume or interviewed them in person – you know what to expect when they turn up for their first shift. For obvious reasons, this is not always the case with a virtual receptionist. 


However, you need not worry! Virtual headquarters ensure that their receptionists are both highly qualified and professional – they just save you time in interviewing them ahead of time. They undergo a vigorous training process that prepares them for anything and everything they will encounter during their shift. The vast majority of them are already seasoned professionals from the world of administration, meaning you can always expect excellent service.  


Furthermore, you can ensure that the way in which the receptionist interacts with the client matches your brand by establishing a chosen greeting. Whether you want your greeting to be succinct and professional, or light-hearted and personable, the receptionist will strive to meet your demands and make an excellent first impression on a client or customer on your behalf. 


Some final words… 


We are living through a difficult and often confusing time. With many businesses continuing to work from home into 2021, you must stay up to date with technological advances, such as remote receptionists, which allow you to continue to operate as normal, providing excellent service to your clients in the meantime – even if you are working from the comfort of your living room. Hiring a virtual receptionist should be viewed as a necessary investment in your small business or company, helping you take yet another step towards success and solidifying your reputation of excellence across all aspects of business.

P.S. This post is a partner collaboration.