When advertising, many answering services try to dismiss the issue of location. They want clients to believe that this isn’t a factor because technology allows a professional Telephone Service Representative (TSR) to answer calls from anywhere in the world. This makes sense on the surface, but there are some deeper reasons that you should consider location when selecting an answering service to answer calls on behalf of your business.
Minimize Language and Cultural Barriers
How do the cheapest services offer those low prices? It often comes down to lower labor costs achieved by operating outside of the United States. You may appreciate the financial savings until you realize that language barriers are hurting your bottom line.
When your customer struggles to understand what a customer service representative is saying, it extends the length of the call. It also interferes with the operator’s ability to collect important information and resolve problems efficiently.
Cultural differences also get in the way as representatives of your answering service fail to understand the lifestyle and needs of your customer base. A TSR who downplays something of importance to a customer will unintentionally send a message that your business is out of touch or simply doesn’t care.
Lower the Risk of Natural Disruptions
Some regions of the U.S. are at greater risk for hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and other natural disasters. This means heightened risk that your answering service will need to evacuate or may become difficult to reach due to limited manpower in the aftermath of a natural disaster.
When searching for an after-hours answering service, determine the service’s location and research the climate. Ask questions regarding the frequency of evacuations and natural disturbances over the lifetime of the business. Even an occasional disturbance can impact the quality of customer service extended to your clients.
Location Helps Assure the Highest Quality
Centratel is located in Bend, Oregon. Unlike the South, East and Midwest of the U.S. our region seldom suffers violent weather patterns that cause long-term electrical and telephone outages. This means reliability and consistency in service (Centratel’s “uptime” exceeds 99.999999%). Another advantage to our Northwest location is that our Oregon TSR’s are “accent neutral.” This means anyone, anywhere can understand our people clearly. (Yes, this is a challenge for answering services in certain other parts of the world!)
Don’t Underestimate the Power of Location
You trust your answering service with your company’s biggest asset: your customers. When a TSR comes on the line, those customers expect prompt, friendly service that addresses their needs even if it is after-hours. Don’t let an unexpected hurricane or frustrating language barriers interfere with a rewarding customer experience that leads to repeat business and word-of-mouth marketing.