Of course, you know this: For the past 18 months veterinarians and animal hospitals have been intensively looking for help as they struggle to keep up with ever-rising pet care demands amidst a changing workplace environment. While many factors have contributed to this, the COVID fiasco is widely viewed as the cause. No question, patients spending more time at home and around their pets are demanding more professional attention than ever before. Veterinarians adjusting to new regulations aren’t able to see as many patients in a day as they once could. Combined with the ongoing shortage of qualified veterinary doctors and staff leaves the veterinary industry in difficult, uncharted territory. The following article found here, recently published by the American Veterinary Medical Association, speaks to the current climate of the industry in great detail. It presents valuable insights into how the pandemic has affected pet ownership and veterinary operations, and perhaps most importantly, how best to adapt.
With an understanding of the factors at play, and with no indication that major changes are afoot, what can be done to help alleviate the burdens many veterinary clinics and animal hospitals face? One smart solution referenced in the AVMA article, is to partner with an elite veterinary answering service. So how can this make a difference?
The benefits to using an elite answering service are many-fold, but at the core is the premise that by outsourcing basic tasks, like fielding incoming calls during and after-hours, staff time can be reallocated to improved customer service and greater patient satisfaction. Below are some of the immediate benefits veterinarians will achieve with the use of an elite veterinary answering service:
- Improved workplace Productivity and Efficiency: Use trained and specialized staff where they’re needed most, with patients. No more fielding calls for appointment changes or prescription refills, or any other non-urgent and basic request that pulls staff away from more important priorities. Call -capture and messaging by live agents who are kind and professional ensures immediate delivery of every message to office staff. And it makes you look good.
- Greater Customer Service and Patient Satisfaction: Immediately address patient complaints about long hold times or not getting through at all. A “live “ answering service ensures incoming calls are answered promptly and professionally, alleviating the burden on staff to manage calls during busy business hours while providing customers with the service they expect. Calls get handled precisely according to your own emergency protocols, with live agents taking messages and immediately routing them to staff. Emergency messages are escalated for immediate attention while non urgent calls are routed to staff for later follow up.
- Improved Staff Morale: Provide much needed relief for staff who are tackling 5 things at once.
- Cost savings. All the above can be yours for a fraction of the cost of another full-time administrative staff member.
For veterinary clinics and animal hospitals that are struggling, looking for ways to remove the pressure, one thing remains clear: a strong partnership with an elite veterinary answering service is a viable, time-tested and immediate solution that will help alleviate some of today’s most aggravating challenges. In the U.S. literally tens of thousands of vet offices use this most basic service.
Centratel is an elite national telephone answering service located in Bend, Oregon. Centratel’s Veterinary Answering Service assists hundreds of veterinary businesses during and after-hours, throughout the United States and is, by a variety of statistics, the highest quality answering service available among the approximately 800 services nationwide.