Answering ServiceFor your 24/7 business

Front-office, After-hours, office hours overflow, and on-call

Centratel is, statistically, the highest quality answering service in the United States

Perfect Processing

Our most recent Customer Reported Error Rate (April through June, 2018) was 1 customer-reported error for every 10,477 message transactions processed.

Experience

TSR’s have processed literally tens of millions of service calls. Providing unmatched levels of professionalism, accuracy and value, we’re poles apart from the traditional telephone answering service.

People first

Applicants for the TSR position undergo an intensive interviewing/aptitude testing process. We have a zero-tolerance policy regarding substance abuse.

Direct Connection

Your office staff has a direct connection to a specific Customer Service Representative. Our customer service department handles all client issues directly with the Telephone Service Representative staff.

Centratel Facts


0.0009%

Client Reported Error Rate in 2018


6 Years, 6 Months

Average client longevity

The ultimate measure of quality: The “Client Reported Error Rate.”

“Client reported errors” are human inaccuracies in spelling, message relay or other message processing function that are reported by clients. Our most recent Customer Reported Error Rate (April through June, 2018) was 1 customer-reported error for every 10,477 message transactions processed.

"Our clients are people who want flawless performance from their answering service. They realize communication with their customers (and among their own staff) must be superb whether it is on-premise or off-premise; during office hours or after-hours."

Sam Carpenter - Founder, President

More on Centratel


Telephone Service Representative (TSR)

Our Telephone Service Representative (TSR) and customer service personnel are well paid, with up to 35% of their compensation keyed directly to their own personal performance. Every one of our staff members is a full-time, career professional: We don’t employ part-time staff. Full-time career people who are well compensated based on their own personal performance, are people who are very serious about what they do.

Training is continual and rigorous

Our expectations are high. In turn, our TSR staff enjoys wages and benefits in the top 2% of all telephone answering services nationally as they perform in a call center work environment that is both calm and invigorating. We break the stereotype of the telephone answering service industry in which operations personnel are underpaid and overworked.

Absolutely dependable

It’s the job of the Centratel TSR to carefully follow answering service relay instructions to find a balance between needlessly disturbing your on-call personnel and efficiently connecting him or her to people who truly need immediate assistance. Once your answering service relay protocol has been established, it is followed tenaciously by the TSR unless you give us real-time instructions otherwise.

Hard-copy backups

Centratel generates hard-copy backups of all transactions. For routine messages, there are a variety of delivery options available including voice mail, fax and Email. If you use our daytime telephone answering service, messages can be delivered one at a time as they are taken, and/or in batches. All elements of every after-hours on-call contact are delivered hard-copy to your office each morning. We can provide full archiving of answered messages for a period of three years.

Sign up to receive 10 Questions to ask an answering service

Whether you have never used a telephone answering service before and are just beginning your research, or if you have used one for years and are looking for better quality, these 10 questions will help you find the right service for your business.

Price Quote Request


To Apply for Servicefill out the form below. If we receive your request on a non-holiday weekday between the hours of 7am and 4pm PST (10:00am and 7:00pm EST), a member of our sales team will do their best to call you back on the same day. As an alternative to filling out the form, you can call our sales line direct at 1-800-664-7159, or email us at sales@centratel.com.

By clicking on the sections below you will find information regarding prerequisites for service, Centatel’s service guarantee, details of the 30 day free trial, pricing and comparison shopping considerations, determination of cost, an outline of the “human factor” element, the Terms of Service Agreement…and a gift for you.

We are sorry but we do not take applications for new or “start-up” companies. Note also that Centratel does not accept all applications for service. We serve businesses or professional offices that have been in operation over two years, and owners/managers who are clearly searching for quality rather than simply price-shopping. Also, in order to keep our service quality high, we only accept new accounts that fit into one of our ten specialty categories. Note that our average client tenure is approximately seven years.

We do not ask for a term contract for service because we believe our clients should have the opportunity to evaluate their arrangement real-time, without constraint. Our Terms of Service are simple and straight-forward. Accounts are billed on a month-to-month basis. Your first month is free, with no obligation.

Important! At Centratel, we use a “monthly” billing cycle in which invoices are compiled from the first day of the month to the last day of the month. When soliciting quotes from other telephone answering services, be sure to ask if the base rate charges are monthly, or if they are billed on a “28 day billing cycle.” 28 day billing cycles have become popular with many answering services as some customers, without careful consideration, assume 28 days is equal to a month. Customers billed on a 28 day cycle actually receive 13 billings per year and therefore overall costs for service are higher.

Apples and oranges: Comparing pricing from one answering service to another is difficult. There isn’t an industry standard for billing, and each service has its own formula. Also, some services charge by “time,” others by “work units,” while others might combine the two. At Centratel, we charge for the work we do, not by the time we spend. This is important: At no risk to you, the 30 day free trial will not only give you an idea of the quality of our service, but will provide you an accurate estimate of ongoing monthly costs.

In order to provide you with an initial cost estimate for service, it’s helpful for you to provide us the average number of calls you expect Centratel to process in a monthly period, as well as a description of how your current service delivers messages to your office and/or your on-call staff. Please consider that even with this information it will still be impossible to provide you an exact figure. We won’t have a truly accurate estimate of your account’s monthly costs until we have handled your call traffic for at least one month (remember, this first trial month is free, with no obligation).

Remember, the first month of service is at no charge. Whether you decide to stay with Centratel or not, you will NOT pay for this first month of service. During their free trial, many of our new accounts choose to continue to keep their current answering service account active, simply forwarding their phones to us for the duration of the trial. In the unlikely event that Centratel service is not satisfactory, returning to the original answering service is easy, just a matter of forwarding the phone lines back to the original service again. If the new account chooses to switch permanently to Centratel, after one month of paid service, we will credit the monthly base charge billed from the former answering service during the trial.

Answering service quality is 100% dependent on human decision making, and in the course of a day a multitude of human decisions are made by the people who handle the calls, our Telephone Service Representatives (TSRs). Sometimes these are “gray area” judgments. Errors can be made. Also, telecom equipment can fail. But note that Centratel’s error rate is light years ahead of industry standards. Our most recent Customer Reported Error Rate (April through June, 2018) was 1 customer-reported error for every 10,477 message transactions processed.

Here’s a recent testimonial from a new medical client that just finished their 30-day trial:
Hi Angie,
Of course, I love the “per month” amount as it is pretty close to the amount I was allowed by the president of the company. I did tell him that if we did not continue with Centratel, I would resign as the Director of Customer Service and I meant it. I never make those types of statements unless I am ready to be accountable for both options. It’s a great fit, we have had NOT ONE complaint from a client which, as you know, we received daily (with our former answering service). I love how the reports are being generated by first name. Everyone here is just so happy and I don’t know how you do it, but that daily report is in at exactly 9 am; not 9:01 and not 8:59. I keep each one in my Simple Nursing Centratel folder, and it’s a great review for me to make sure all the calls are going to the correct person, and they always are. That part is certainly difficult because the calls can be vague and could easily be sent to the wrong person.

I love you, Centratel and the price. I’m ready to sign whatever documents you require.

Thanks for the great service, the free month, your reliable calls and your willingness to find easier ways to make me happy.

To a great partnership,

-KB, Phoenix

If you talk to us about answering service, we will send you a free hardcover copy of Sam Carpenter’s book Work The System: The Simple Mechanics of Making More and Working Less. There’s more information regarding the book at workthesystem.com. First published in May 2008 and now in its 3rd edition and revised for 2019/2020, the book is also available on Amazon and in your favorite bookstore.