Technology Has Enabled The Cold Callers
One of the phenomena born out of such an inherent reliance on technology and our ability to be reachable almost 24/7 is call screening. Call screening is the simple process of getting a call and making the decision on whether to answer it, or let it ring out or go to voicemail. This decision can be based on a number of factors but the most common is probably whether you recognise the number calling and if not, whether you think the number looks legitimate. Is it someone contacting you with a genuine need, or is the number spam, seeking only to gain something from you?
A lot of private individuals use this practice every day in regards to their home phone, adopting the policy that unless the caller starts to leave a message on the answering machine, they don’t pick up the phone. It makes it easier to avoid telemarketers and others with agendas you don’t have time or the need for.
According to a recent report by the US Federal Communication Commission, nearly half of calls made to American mobile phones in 2019 were identified as spam. A spam call is defined as “an irrelevant or inappropriate message sent over the phone to a large number of recipients – typically those who have not expressed an interest in receiving the message.” These can also include those all too persistent calls from telemarketers or charities etc. when you’ve engaged with them only a handful of times, where the relationship should be on YOUR terms and not theirs.
Spam Calls Are Rampant in Australia
Spam calls can be incredibly dangerous as they present the perfect front for scams, designed purely with the intention, to steal and manipulate people’s personal information, particularly their finances. This can of course be elevated to a whole other level when these phone calls are being made to an Australian business. Simply, the stakes are higher. More widespread damage can be done if an unwanted individual or party gains access to a business’s highly confidential information, including the records of customers and/or employees for example.
Call screening, once active is an efficient and easy way to manage whether a call is accepted, declined or blocked, something available at its most basic level to anyone using a mobile phone. However, there are certain apps and services with the ability to go a step further and route specific numbers to a place where they can be answered and addressed with the utmost professionalism at any time, irrespective of the constraints of modern work-life balance. This can include services like Ring Central, Google Voice, 8 x 8 and Grasshopper to name a few.
But thanks to modern technology, it doesn’t have to stop at call screening. In 2019, there’s a new phenomenon taking the admin of business by storm: virtual receptionists. These are companies set up to handle the day to day grind of admin, particularly in a small business context, so that you don’t have to. Their main focus is exactly as it sounds, screening, answering, directing and dealing with calls which can be one of the most tedious, time consuming and stressful parts of business life. To give you a more complete and realistic idea of what having a virtual receptionist can entail, so that you can work out whether acquiring such a service may be of benefit to you, allow me to introduce Virtual Headquarters.
Virtual Headquarters - Your Call Screening Partner
Virtual Headquarters is a worldwide live telephone answering service, with over 6,000 businesses as customers across Australia, the United States, Canada and the UK. We are at the forefront of this particular market with the ability to answer calls on behalf of your business 24/7. We also have the ability to work to a script of your choice, so we can greet customers and answer their questions as comfortably as you would, - they’ll never know they were speaking to anyone from an external service and this can be done entirely on your terms. We can simply manage the calls you are unable to take or answer them all, so you never miss the chance for vital communication with existing or prospective customers no matter what is happening in or outside the office walls. Every call we answer can be quickly followed up with a simple text or email, detailing the contents of the call so you’re never out of the loop or waiting on a third party, either.
When you sign up with us for a 7 day free trial, which you are able to cancel at any time with no obligation or cost, we can provide you with a number or you can easily forward calls from an already existing number to us, which we will answer seamlessly with no complication. This number can be used on letterheads, business cards, and in advertising and promotion. In addition to answering the phones, our lively, capable and highly professional team of receptionists can also take messages, make appointments and answer questions customers may have about your business.
Virtual Headquarters services can be set up in minutes and are incredibly cost-effective, with our most basic service available at only $20 a month. We’re incredibly flexible and can be tailored to meet the needs of any budget from start ups and small businesses to large enterprises, franchises and service providers. Whatever your needs, we’ve got you covered.
With the pace and demands of life in 2019 both in and outside of the business world, having the technology to screen calls, protect your business from spam and scams, and never miss a call no matter what, are incredible assets to have. This might just be the thing that gives you that much-needed edge over your competition, elevates your business’s reputation and gives you peace of mind, relieving stress and leaving you better able to do your job and balance your life.